Biomonitoring is an assessment of chemical exposure in humans and wildlife. Chemical exposure can be determined by measuring contaminants and their metabolites in samples such as tissue, blood, milk and urine.
Most of these samples will have detectable levels of chemical contaminants due to the extreme sensitivity of the analytical instrumentation and ubiquitous exposure to chemicals. Therefore, elevated chemical exposure can only be determined in comparison to reference or control samples. Chemistry Matters understands the analytical chemistry, the chemical contaminant behavior, and the statistical controls necessary for a successful biomonitoring investigation.
The experts at Chemistry Matters assist clients to determine chemical exposure by:
- Providing litigation quality study designs using most appropriate analytical methods
- Understanding chemical behavior in the environment and in biological systems
- Selecting appropriate indicator species and sample media
- Assessing chemical absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion (ADME) in biomarker selection
- Controlling species size and weight and normalizing factors such as creatinine or lipids
- Determining a sufficient number of control and exposed population samples
- Providing legal sampling chain of custody from sample collection to laboratory reporting
- Selecting robust analytical methods for comparability to established reference studies
- Ensuring high quality data that can potentially withstand legal scrutiny
- Interpreting data with statistical analysis and data visualization tools
- Communicating results to interested parties and stakeholders with data-supported conclusions
When hiring Chemistry Matters, you are hiring a multi-discipline team of scientists, chemists and statisticians. Confident results lead to confident decisions. At Chemistry Matters, we know that the details matter and we have the in-depth experience to design and execute an effective biomonitoring program.
- Legal Sampling
- Chain of Custody
- Study Design
- Data Analysis and Visualization
- Data Wrangling
- Multivariate Statistical Analysis
- Principle Component (PCA), Hierarchical Cluster (HCA)
- Science Communication
- Data Science/Big Data
- GCxGC Analysis
- Fate and Transport
- Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)
- Incidental PCBs
- Polychlorinated Dibenzo-p-Dioxins and Polychlorinated Cibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs, Dioxins)
- Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs)
- Petroleum Hydrocarbons (PHC)
- Crude Oil
- Extended Metals
- Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)
- Persistent Pesticides/ Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs)
- Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)
Presentations Relevant to Biomonitoring
Photos from the Field
For human biomonitoring, using established databases such as the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) can be used as reference concentrations. The NHANES provides contaminant concentrations for the United States general population and is updated every two years. In order to compare to the NHANES data, laboratory procedures for analysis must be very similar to those used by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In addition, data must be statistically analyzed using population statistics and methods. Therefore, experience with CDC analytical methods and statistical methods is imperative for proper comparisons and validated conclusions.
Chemistry Matters has in depth knowledge of NHANES data including capability of statistical interpretation of sub-population reference groups – customized to age, gender, ethnicity where appropriate.
Ideally, Chemistry Matters should be contacted at the planning stage. Experimental and study design is paramount in an effective biomonitoring program. A sufficient number of samples from control and exposed populations are required to make conclusive determination of exposure. In addition, the right analytical methods and assessment of covariates (for example, lipid content or creatinine concentrations) are required for sample to sample comparison purposes. Selecting the appropriate indicator species (non-migratory, limited movement) and controlling for factors such as size and weight help make the data more comparable and provide results that are more conclusive.
If data has already been collected, it’s not too late to contact the experts at Chemistry Matters. We have the expertise to manage large datasets, perform data quality checks, and statistically analyze the data for confident interpretation and communication of results.