Developing human biomonitoring as a 21st century toolbox within the European exposure science strategy 2020-2030

2022-08-28

Human biomonitoring (HBM) is a crucial approach for exposure assessment, as emphasised in the European Commission’s Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability (CSS). HBM can help to improve chemical policies in five major key areas: (1) assessing internal and aggregate exposure in different target populations; 2) assessing exposure to chemicals across life stages; (3) assessing combined exposure to multiple chemicals (mixtures); (4) bridging regulatory silos on aggregate exposure; and (5) enhancing the effectiveness of risk management measures. In this strategy paper we propose a vision and a strategy for the use of HBM in chemical regulations and public health policy in Europe and beyond. We outline six strategic objectives and a roadmap to further strengthen HBM approaches and increase their implementation in the regulatory risk assessment of chemicals to enhance our understanding of exposure and health impacts, enabling timely and targeted policy interventions and risk management. These strategic objectives are: 1) further development of sampling strategies and sample preparation; 2) further development of chemical-analytical HBM methods; 3) improving harmonisation throughout the HBM research life cycle; 4) further development of quality control / quality assurance throughout the HBM research life cycle; 5) obtain sustained funding and reinforcement by legislation; and 6) extend target-specific communication with scientists, policymakers, citizens and other stakeholders. HBM approaches are essential in risk assessment to address scientific, regulatory and societal challenges. HBM requires full and strong support from the scientific and regulatory domain to reach its full potential in public and occupational health assessment and in regulatory decision-making.

Authors: Maryam Zare Jeddi, Nancy B Hopf, Henriqueta Louro, Susana Viegas, Karen S Galea, Robert Pasanen-Kase, Tiina Santonen, Vicente Mustieles, Mariana F Fernandez, Hans Verhagen, Stephanie K Bopp, Jean Philippe Antignac, Arthur David, Hans Mol, Robert Barouki, Karine Audouze, Radu-Corneliu Duca, Peter Fantke, Paul Scheepers, Manosij Ghosh, An Van Nieuwenhuyse, Joana Lobo Vicente, Xenia Trier, Loïc Rambaud, Clémence Fillol, Sebastien Denys, André Conrad, Marike Kolossa-Gehring, Alicia Paini, Jon Arnot, Florian Schulze, Kate Jones, Ovnair Sepai, Imran Ali, Lorraine Brennan, Emilio Benfenati, Francesco Cubadda, Alberto Mantovani, Alena Bartonova, Alison Connolly, Jaroslav Slobodnik, Yuri Bruinen de Bruin, Jacob van Klaveren, Nicole Palmen, Hubert Dirven, Trine Husøy, Cathrine Thomsen, Ana Virgolino, Martin Röösli, Tim Gant, Natalie von Goetz, Jos Bessems
; Full Source: Environment international 2022 Aug 28;168:107476. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2022.107476.