Dermal transfer of chlorpyrifos residues from residential surfaces: comparison of hand press, hand drag, wipe, and polyurethane foam roller measurements after broadcast and aerosol pesticide applications. (1/136)

Indoor residential pesticide applications present the potential for human exposures, particularly for small children. Personal contact with target and nontarget surfaces can result in transfer of pesticides to the skin, but the magnitude of such transfer is uncertain. This research compared surface sampling techniques [wipe and polyurethane foam (PUF) roller] with the removal ability of human skin following broadcast and total aerosol release applications of Dursban (Dow Elanco, Midland, MI), a residential formulation containing the insecticide chlorpyrifos. Hands were washed immediately after surface contact, following a protocol that included a laboratory-generated adjustment factor to account for incomplete removal of chlorpyrifos from skin. Chlorpyrifos transfer was similar for hand press and hand drag techniques, averaging approximately 1-6 ng/cm2 of carpet contacted. These amounts represented < 1% of the amount of chlorpyrifos deposited on the surfaces 3.5 hr earlier. Chlorpyrifos transfer from carpet to skin was 23-24 times lower than for wipe sampling and 33-36 times lower than for PUF roller sampling (p = 0.0007 and p = 0.0006 for broadcast and aerosol applications, respectively). Hand press sampling removed approximately 4.5 times less chlorpyrifos from nontarget furniture surfaces (12 ng/cm2) than did wipe sampling (56 ng/cm2; p = 0.009). Chlorpyrifos residues on carpet were substantially higher after broadcast applications than after aerosol applications, but residues on such nontarget surfaces as furniture were substantially higher for the aerosol application. This study indicates that human skin removes substantially less residue from carpets and furniture than either conventional wipe or PUF roller sampling methods following residential pest control applications of chlorpyrifos. Although this paper focuses on quantifying residue transfer from surface to skin using different surface sampling techniques, no attempt is made to quantify the amount of chlorpyrifos residue that is subsequently absorbed.  (+info)

Increased levels of markers of microbial exposure in homes with indoor storage of organic household waste. (2/136)

As part of environmental management policies in Europe, separate collection of organic household waste and nonorganic household waste has become increasingly common. As waste is often stored indoors, this policy might increase microbial exposure in the home environment. In this study we evaluated the association between indoor storage of organic waste and levels of microbial agents in house dust. The levels of bacterial endotoxins, mold beta(1-->3)-glucans, and fungal extracellular polysaccharides (EPS) of Aspergillus and Penicillium species were determined in house dust extracts as markers of microbial exposure. House dust samples were collected in 99 homes in The Netherlands selected on the basis of whether separated organic waste was present in the house. In homes in which separated organic waste was stored indoors for 1 week or more the levels of endotoxin, EPS, and glucan were 3.2-, 7.6-, and 4. 6-fold higher, respectively (all P < 0.05), on both living room and kitchen floors than the levels in homes in which only nonorganic residual waste was stored indoors. Increased levels of endotoxin and EPS were observed, 2.6- and 2.1-fold (P < 0.1), respectively, when separated organic waste was stored indoors for 1 week or less, whereas storage of nonseparated waste indoors had no effect on microbial agent levels (P > 0.2). The presence of textile floor covering was another major determinant of microbial levels (P < 0.05). Our results indicate that increased microbial contaminant levels in homes are associated with indoor storage of separated organic waste. These increased levels might increase the risk of bioaerosol-related respiratory symptoms in susceptible people.  (+info)

Modeling of exposure to carpet-cleaning chemicals preceding irritant-induced asthma in one patient. (3/136)

42-year-old woman experienced an acute asthma attack, seizures, and unconsciousness immediately after a carpet-cleaning and deodorizing job was conducted in her home. Exposure modeling estimates that she was exposed to approximately 3.4-17 mg/m(3) of sodium tripolyphosphate and more than 14 mg/m(3) volatile organic compounds immediately after the cleaning. I derived two separate exposure models for these estimates that evidenced good consistency of exposure estimates. Asthmatics and carpet-cleaning companies should be advised about safety during carpet-cleaning operations, including adequate warnings about excess risk for asthmatics, temporary removal from the home, reduced detergent levels within cleaners, and reduced overall levels of cleaning solutions used within the home. Further studies of carpet-cleaning exposures are indicated.  (+info)

Workers' dermal exposure to UV-curable acrylates in the furniture and Parquet industry. (4/136)

The use of ultraviolet radiation-curable coatings (UV-coatings) has increased rapidly in the parquet and furniture industry. Work with UV-coatings involves risk from skin exposure to chemically reactive, concentrated acrylates that are known skin contact irritants and sensitizers. Yet, the methods and tools for measuring and quantifying dermal exposure from hazardous chemicals directly on the skin are limited and methods to measure skin exposure to UV-coatings in occupational or environmental settings have been lacking. Skin exposure to UV-coatings was measured employing a quantitative tape stripping method that we have developed for this purpose. A pilot study was performed at three workplaces. In the main study, workers' skin exposure to uncured UV-coatings was measured at seven workplaces and on two separate workdays (rounds 1 and 2) within a six-month period to determine exposure variation. Skin exposure was measured at four standardized sites on the hand, 3-4 times per work shift. The forehead was sampled once. A questionnaire was carried out with the workers in both rounds to find out factors that can affect skin exposure to UV-coatings. The pilot study indicated that both skin and surface contamination to TPGDA-containing UV-coatings were common and varied up to 2110 microgram on the sampling area of 10cm(2). In the main study skin contamination due to TPGDA was found on 16 of 23 workers, at 6 out of the 7 workplaces, and from 36 (5. 4%) of the 664 samples. In round one 8.6% (n=383) of the samples contained TPGDA and in round two 1.1 % (n=281). The average TPGDA mass on all the positive samples (n=36) was 30.4+/-77.0 microgram for the first and second rounds alone this mass was 30.6+/-80 (n=33) and 28.3+/-16.5 microgram (n=3), respectively. Despite the limited sampling area and sampling sites, we could find residues of TPGDA at all sampling times, even at the beginning of the work shift. This may be due to transfer of UV-coatings through contaminated equipment, shoes and surfaces. Our study indicates that there is a risk of harmful skin exposure to UV-coatings in the furniture and parquet industry.  (+info)

Slip resistance of industrial floor surfaces: development of an elastomer suited to in-situ measurement. (5/136)

Slips contribute to 12% of occupational accidents. A slip resistant floor is a mean to prevent slipping accidents occurring in workshops. Floor slip resistance is often evaluated by measuring a friction index, proportional to the force opposing slipping of a reference elastomer on the floor surface under test. When implementing a portable appliance, slip resistance measurements carried out on lubricated floors were not stabilized. The authors advanced the hypothesis of oil impregnating the elastomer. A new elastomer suited to in-situ measurement has been developed to achieve stable measuring conditions. This study highlights the fact that the nature and characteristics of a reference elastomer must be specified when slip resistance measurements are carried out.  (+info)

Allergen avoidance: does it work? (6/136)

The first recorded example of allergen avoidance in the treatment of allergic disorders dates from the 16th century. The Italian physician Gerolamo Cardano (1501-1576) was invited to Scotland by John Hamilton, Archbishop of St Andrews (and brother of the Regent), to give advice on the treatment of his asthma. Cardano recommended that the Archbishop should get rid of his feather bedding, which was followed by a 'miraculous' remission of otherwise troublesome symptoms. The first controlled attempts to treat asthma by environmental manipulation date to the beginning of 20th century. In 1925, the Leopold brothers treated patients with asthma and other allergic disorders by moving them into a dust free room. Storm van Leeuwen created a 'climate' chamber in The Netherlands in 1927 and demonstrated that asthmatic patients improved when moved from their homes into the chamber. One year later, Dekker observed that measures aimed at reducing the amount of dust in bedrooms had a beneficial effect on asthma symptoms in patients allergic to house dust. Van Leeuwen wrote: 'In our endeavours to find the cause of the attack ... we utilised the known fact that the environment of the asthmatic patient is, as a rule, of primary importance in determining the intensity and frequency of his attacks'. Nowadays, more than ever, it is essential to address the environmental influences on the increasing prevalence of asthma and allergic disorders.  (+info)

Enhanced detection of surface-associated bacteria in indoor environments by quantitative PCR. (7/136)

Methods for detecting microorganisms on surfaces are needed to locate biocontamination sources and to relate surface and airborne concentrations. Research was conducted in an experimental room to evaluate surface sampling methods and quantitative PCR (QPCR) for enhanced detection of a target biocontaminant present on flooring materials. QPCR and culture analyses were used to quantitate Bacillus subtilis (Bacillus globigii) endospores on vinyl tile, commercial carpet, and new and soiled residential carpet with samples obtained by four surface sampling methods: a swab kit, a sponge swipe, a cotton swab, and a bulk method. The initial data showed that greater overall sensitivity was obtained with the QPCR than with culture analysis; however, the QPCR results for bulk samples from residential carpet were negative. The swab kit and the sponge swipe methods were then tested with two levels of background biological contamination consisting of Penicillium chrysogenum spores. The B. subtilis values obtained by the QPCR method were greater than those obtained by culture analysis. The differences between the QPCR and culture data were significant for the samples obtained with the swab kit for all flooring materials except soiled residential carpet and with the sponge swipe for commercial carpet. The QPCR data showed that there were no significant differences between the swab kit and sponge swipe sampling methods for any of the flooring materials. Inhibition of QPCR due solely to biological contamination of flooring materials was not evident. However, some degree of inhibition was observed with the soiled residential carpet, which may have been caused by the presence of abiotic contaminants, alone or in combination with biological contaminants. The results of this research demonstrate the ability of QPCR to enhance detection and enumeration of biocontaminants on surface materials and provide information concerning the comparability of currently available surface sampling methods.  (+info)

Risk of exposure to house dust pyroglyphid mites in Poland. (8/136)

During the period of 1989-2000, 335 house dust samples were collected from dwellings at 27 different localities in Poland. Mite allergen exposure was measured in house dust samples collected by performing of mite taxa determination and measuring of the mite allergen levels by a semiquantitative guanine method (Acarex(R) test). Mites were found in 158 of the samples examined (47.2%). A total 3,714 mites were isolated and 15 species identified, including four species from the family Pyroglyphidae (house dust mites). Among them, Dermatophagoides farinae (DF) was predominant (approximately 67% of the total count), followed by D. pteronyssinus (DP) (17.6%) and Euroglyphus maynei (EM) (1.6%). Hirstia chelidonis (HCh) was found for the first time in house dust samples in Poland. DF was predominant in Iwonicz-Zdroj (96.6%), Katowice (91.8%), Sosnowiec (89.4%), Chorzow (94.8%), Bytom (50.9%), Swietochlowice (96.7%) and generally in Upper Silesia (88.2%), whereas DP dominated in Lod (92.9%), Wodzislaw (80.9%), Krakow (45.6%) and Bielsko-Biala (24.8%). Only 14.3% of the mites collected were alive. Total mean number of domestic mites per gram of dust (in all samples examined) was 204.1 +/- 1079.8. The greatest number of mites per 1 gram of dust was 14,971.4. Mite densities and levels of mite allergens (expressed as Acarex test steps) in samples from beds, floors and upholstery furnitures at particular localities in Poland, and in dwellings of atopic versus non-atopic subjects were compared. Highest mite concentrations were usually found in dust from beds, carpets and shutters. D. farinae was distinctly more abundant both per 1 gram of dust and per 1 sample than the species D. pteronyssinus. Other pyroglyphid mites, E. maynei and H. chelidonis, occurred in very small numbers. No significant differences were found between the counts of mites (total and live) in the dwellings of atopic and non-atopic persons. Approximately 49.5% of samples showed positive levels of the mite allergens (Acarex test steps). An influence of some abiotic indoor factors on the mite prevalence in the examined dwellings was analysed separately in relation to samples of bed dust, floor dust and dust from upholstery furnitures. The density of mites was influenced mainly by the type of heating, temperature, type of sleeping accommodation, type of floor or furniture, sampling method, and type of building, whereas levels of the mite allergens were associated with the mite density, relative humidity, month, sampling method, type of building and type of heating.  (+info)