The relevance of particle size distribution and bioaccessibility on human health risk assessment for trace elements measured in indoor dust

Israel N. Y. Doyi*, Vladimir Strezov, Cynthia F. Isley, Tahereh Yazdanparast, Mark Patrick Taylor

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

[Graphic abstract presents]

Trace metal contaminants in indoor dust pose a significant potential exposure risk to people because of the time spent indoors and the readily ingested and inhaled fine-grained composition of indoor dusts. However, there is limited trace metal data available on the specific interaction of dust particle size fraction and their respective bioaccessibility/bioavailability and its consequent effect on health risk assessment. This study addresses this knowledge gap by examining bioaccessible and bioavailable trace element concentrations (As, Cr, Cu, Mn, Ni, Pb, Zn) in 152 discrete size fractions from 38 indoor vacuum samples from a larger dataset (n = 376) of indoor dust from Sydney, Australia. Arsenic, Cu, Ni, Pb and Zn were most concentrated in the 90–150 μm fraction with Cr and Mn being more concentrated in < 45 μm fraction. Dust particle size fractions < 45 μm, 45–90 μm, 90–150 μm and 150–250 μm were analysed for their individual gastric phase (G-alone) in vitro trace element bioaccessibilities. Lead exposure risk was estimated using the United States Environmental Protection Agency's Integrated Exposure Uptake Biokinetic (IEUBK) children's model. Mean Pb bioaccessibility was 59.6%, 42%, 62% and 62.2% for < 45 μm, 45–90 μm, 90–150 μm, and 150–250 μm, respectively. Mean Pb absolute bioavailability (ABA) was lower at 26.2%, 18.4%, 27.2% and 27.3% for size fractions < 45 μm, 45–90 μm, 90–150 μm, and 150–250 μm, respectively. The predicted blood Pb (PbB) levels for a hypothetical child aged 1 to 3 years for each of the dust particle size fractions was > 5 μg/dL. Lead concentrations measured in the selected dust samples show a potential for adverse health impacts on young children with the greatest risk being from indoor dust sized 90–150 μm.

Original languageEnglish
Article number137931
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Volume733
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2020

Keywords

  • Dust particle size
  • Bioaccessibility
  • Public health
  • Trace metals
  • IEUBK
  • Environmental toxicology

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