Working Group 1

Working Group 1: Exposure Assessment
Lead: Prof. Dr. Thomas Göen
Co-Lead: Assoc. Prof. Dr. Joakim Pagels

Working Group Members:

Working Group 1
Exposure assessment is a main task for diagnosis, monitoring and prevention of exposure related disease. Often the exposure assessment task is overseen, and it is often the weakest part in epidemiological studies. Biomarkers and modeling of exposure with Geographical Information Systems (GIS) are key tools for monitoring exposure in the general environment, with a rapid development over the last years, but still systematically used in rather few European countries. WG1 will increase the exchange of experience of these techniques between the involved research groups, offer exchange in training in the techniques. There is a decline in conventional air sampling at the workplaces, which is only partly compensated for by other approaches, while at the same time exposure conditions are increasingly diversified even within the same sector and new complex exposures (green jobs, nanotechnology, biofuels) are introduced at a high pace. New technologies permit new approaches to closing this knowledge-doing gap through exposure assessment which is less demanding with regard to expert resources, including exposure modelling, biomonitoring, passive sampling, new sensors, and self-administered sampling by the workers. WG 1 will compile information on different approaches to asses specific occupational exposures of key importance for exposure-related diseases, suggest step-by-step approaches to inform practice and strengthen research capacity, and train the COST-participants in new techniques. WP1 will compile a list of possible biomarkers of exposure including sampling media and sampling time to be used for environmental and occupational exposure assessment, available information on „normal“ levels including geographical, ethnic, and other differences. WP1 will compile a list of possible exposure modelling methods for environmental and occupational exposure and the basic information needed for good performance. WP1 will jointly develop an agenda for development of different approaches how to validate the exposure assessment methods. WP1 will identify important key gaps with regard to exposure assessment for externally caused diseases (performance, availability, usability, feasibility).