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Tuesday, January 25, 2022

House dust from 35 countries reveals our global toxic contaminant exposure and health risk - The Conversation AU

Last updated Tuesday, January 4, 2022 14:11 ET , Source: NewsService

Everyone’s home gets dusty, but is yours the same as house dust in China or the US? Researchers around the world have united to capture the world’s first trans-continental data on household dust.

People from 35 countries vacuumed their homes and sent their dust to universities in different countries, where it was tested for potentially toxic trace metals. Researchers gathered data on the human and household factors that might affect how much humans are exposed to these contaminants.

This is the first effort to collect global data of this type in a single study. It shed new light on the sources and risks associated with trace metal exposure, which can lead to concerning neurocognitive effects in people of all ages.

The study shows it doesn’t matter whether you live in a high or low income country, are rich or poor – we’re all exposed to contaminants via dust.

Differences between countries

Local environmental factors and contamination histories can make a difference.

In New Caledonia, elevated chromium, nickel and manganese were evident, due to local rock, soil and nickel smelters. These may be linked to increased lung and thyroid cancers in New Caledonia.

In New Zealand, arsenic concentrations are naturally high. One in three New Zealand homes exceeded the acceptable health risk for children under two, set by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Australia has concerning levels of arsenic and lead contamination in house dust. One in six Australian homes exceeded the US...



Read Full Story: https://theconversation.com/house-dust-from-35-countries-reveals-our-global-toxic-contaminant-exposure-and-health-risk-172499

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