1st Edition

Essentials of Toxic Chemical Risk
Science and Society

ISBN 9780415248518
Published April 7, 2010 by CRC Press
212 Pages 30 B/W Illustrations

USD $140.00

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Book Description

A contribution to the ongoing debate about how to manage the growing risks of anthropogenic chemicals in the environment, Essentials of Toxic Chemical Risk weaves together coverage of the science that underlies toxic chemical risk assessment, the physiological and molecular bases of chemical toxicity, the process of assessing toxic chemical risk to human health and the environment, and the strategies employed in managing it. The book links toxic chemical risk to the real world of people and communities confronted with the vexing problem of how to deal with products that make their lives better but that also harbor a potential for harm.

The book introduces the basics of toxicology from a risk assessment perspective, using a jargon-free, journalistic style that makes scientific concepts accessible to a wide audience without "dumbing down" the science. It covers the fate and transport of chemicals in the environment, dose-effect, animal toxicity testing, human epidemiology, the uptake, distribution, and elimination of toxic chemicals including first-order rate constants and calculations of body burdens, and the cellular basis of cancer and other diseases that can be caused by toxic chemicals. The book also introduces risk management and discusses the balance between precaution and socio-economic benefits, as embodied by the Toxic Substances Control Act, the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, and the European Union’s innovative REACH directive (Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of chemicals).

Putting equal emphasis on the twin issues of risk assessment and risk management, the author has carefully selected topics that shed light on risk management decisions and cover ecotoxicolocy and organismic toxicology. The book provides a thorough introduction to the science of toxicology and to the policy debates and scientific uncertainties that make risk management a work in progress.

Table of Contents

Toxic Chemical Risk as Science and Social Discourse
The Science of Toxicology
Chemical Hazard, Risk Assessment, and Risk Management
How This Book Is Organized
Environmental Pathways of Toxic Chemicals
Advective Transport
Chemical Transformation
Bioconcentration, Bioaccumulation, and Biomagnification
Ecosystems and Biogeochemical Cycles
The Hydrologic Cycle
Assessing and Managing Exposure
Dose-Effect: The Foundation of Toxicological Science
Ethical Dilemmas and the Protection of Public Health
Preliminary Investigations of Toxicity
The Quantal Dose-Effect Relationship: The Workhorse of Risk Assessment
The Graded Dose-Effect Relationship
Human Populations at Risk
Law and Loopholes
After the Fact
The Null Hypothesis and Statistical Power
Proof of Causation
Designing an Epidemiological Study: Cohort vs. Case Control
Level I, II, and III Epidemiological Studies
The Cornerstone of Risk Assessment: Toxicity Testing in Animals
Designing a Toxicity Test
Descriptions of Toxicity Tests and Their Products
The Probit Plot
Information Derived from Toxicity Testing
Toxicity Investigations in Individual Organisms vs. Populations
Using Animals to Screen Personal-Care Products: Local Irritation and Sensitization Tests
Reducing the Use of Animals in Toxicity Testing
The Body’s Defenses against Chemical Toxicity
Exposure and Bioavailability
The Cell Membrane
Elimination by the Kidneys
Excretion, Elimination, and Weak Acids and Bases
The Kinetics of Single-Dose Exposure: Uptake, Distribution, and Elimination
The Kinetics of Repeated-Dose Exposure
Mechanisms of Chemical Disease
Noncancer Health Effects
Human Health Risk Assessment
The Process of Risk Assessment
Hazard Identification
Analysis of Exposure
Analysis of Effects
Risk Characterization
Ecological Risk Assessment
Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment
The EPA’s Ecological Risk-Assessment Process
Environmental Impact Statement
Managing Chemical Risk in North America and Europe
Costs of Toxic Chemicals to Society
Core Concepts of Risk Management
General Strategies for Managing Toxic Chemical Risk
Environmental Laws in North America and Europe

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Stephen Penningroth was educated at a German Gymnasium, did his undergraduate work at Brown University and the Columbia University School of General Studies, and earned a Ph.D. in  Biochemical Sciences from Princeton University in 1977. He served as an assistant and associate professor at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-School of Osteopathic Medicine, teaching pharmacology and toxicology to second-year medical and osteopathic students and performing basic research on cell motility with grant support from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.

Following a sabbatical leave, he shifted focus to science education, resigning from the medical school and moving to Cornell University as an adjunct faculty member in 1993. While at Cornell he designed and taught undergraduate courses in environmental, regulatory and reproductive toxicology and also acted as a technical advisor to three citizens groups at Superfund toxic waste sites in New York and New Jersey. Since 2000 he has served as Executive Director of the not-for-profit Community Science Institute communityscience.org in Ithaca, NY, which partners with citizen volunteers to address risks to water in the Finger Lakes region.