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Sample records for predicting environmental chemical

  1. Prediction of Estrogenic Bioactivity of Environmental Chemical Metabolites.

    PubMed

    Pinto, Caroline L; Mansouri, Kamel; Judson, Richard; Browne, Patience

    2016-09-19

    The US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program (EDSP) is using in vitro data generated from ToxCast/Tox21 high-throughput screening assays to assess the endocrine activity of environmental chemicals. Considering that in vitro assays may have limited metabolic capacity, inactive chemicals that are biotransformed into metabolites with endocrine bioactivity may be missed for further screening and testing. Therefore, there is a value in developing novel approaches to account for metabolism and endocrine activity of both parent chemicals and their associated metabolites. We used commercially available software to predict metabolites of 50 parent compounds, out of which 38 chemicals are known to have estrogenic metabolites, and 12 compounds and their metabolites are negative for estrogenic activity. Three ER QSAR models were used to determine potential estrogen bioactivity of the parent compounds and predicted metabolites, the outputs of the models were averaged, and the chemicals were then ranked based on the total estrogenicity of the parent chemical and metabolites. The metabolite prediction software correctly identified known estrogenic metabolites for 26 out of 27 parent chemicals with associated metabolite data, and 39 out of 46 estrogenic metabolites were predicted as potential biotransformation products derived from the parent chemical. The QSAR models estimated stronger estrogenic activity for the majority of the known estrogenic metabolites compared to their parent chemicals. Finally, the three models identified a similar set of parent compounds as top ranked chemicals based on the estrogenicity of putative metabolites. This proposed in silico approach is an inexpensive and rapid strategy for the detection of chemicals with estrogenic metabolites and may reduce potential false negative results from in vitro assays.

  2. EPA'S TOXCAST PROGRAM FOR PREDICTING TOXICITY AND PRIORITIZING ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS

    EPA Science Inventory

    ToxCast is a research program to predict or forecast toxicity by evaluating a broad spectrum of chemicals and effects; physical-chemical properties, predicted bioactivities, HTS and cell-based assays, and genomics. Data will be interpretively linked to known or predicted toxicol...

  3. Evaluation of a multimedia model for predicting the environmental fate of organic chemicals in Canada

    SciTech Connect

    Kane, D.M.; Mackay, D.

    1995-12-31

    Health Canada is required to assess human health risks associated with the introduction of new chemicals for commercial use in Canada. An important initial step in this assessment process is the estimation of expected concentrations of a particular new chemical in various environmental media such as air, water, sail, and sediment. These concentrations can then form the basis for subsequent calculations of human exposure. A fugacity-based multimedia exposure model (CHEMCAN3) was developed for these assessments which describes the chemical`s fate in the environment based on its physical chemical properties, reactivity, transport characteristics and emissions. This paper presents the results of a validation exercise comparing the predictions of the model against measured data. CHEMCAN3 was applied to the prediction of the environmental fate of a set of 10 organic chemicals. The predictions were then compared to available environmental monitoring data for these chemicals, The test set included 5 industrial chemicals and 5 commonly used pesticides; benzene, chlorobenzene, hexachlorobenzene, toluene, dichloromethane, di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, atrazine, dinoseb, lindane, parathion, and 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid. The Southern Ontario region of Canada was used as the environment for the model predictions. The results show that the model successfully predicts the environmental behavior of the chemicals, with 82% agreement within one order of magnitude between predicted and measured values. This result lends confidence to the use of this model, and similar models, for prediction of environmental fate and as a basis for exposure assessment.

  4. Predictive In Vitro Screening of Environmental Chemicals – The ToxCast Project

    EPA Science Inventory

    ToxCast, the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s chemical prioritization research program, is developing methods for utilizing computational chemistry and bioactivity profiling to predict potential for toxicity and prioritize limited testing resources (www.epa.gov/toc...

  5. Use of QSARs in international decision-making frameworks to predict ecologic effects and environmental fate of chemical substances.

    PubMed Central

    Cronin, Mark T D; Walker, John D; Jaworska, Joanna S; Comber, Michael H I; Watts, Christopher D; Worth, Andrew P

    2003-01-01

    This article is a review of the use, by regulatory agencies and authorities, of quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARs) to predict ecologic effects and environmental fate of chemicals. For many years, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has been the most prominent regulatory agency using QSARs to predict the ecologic effects and environmental fate of chemicals. However, as increasing numbers of standard QSAR methods are developed and validated to predict ecologic effects and environmental fate of chemicals, it is anticipated that more regulatory agencies and authorities will find them to be acceptable alternatives to chemical testing. PMID:12896861

  6. A unified algorithm for predicting partition coefficients for PBPK modeling of drugs and environmental chemicals

    SciTech Connect

    Peyret, Thomas; Poulin, Patrick; Krishnan, Kannan

    2010-12-15

    The algorithms in the literature focusing to predict tissue:blood PC (P{sub tb}) for environmental chemicals and tissue:plasma PC based on total (K{sub p}) or unbound concentration (K{sub pu}) for drugs differ in their consideration of binding to hemoglobin, plasma proteins and charged phospholipids. The objective of the present study was to develop a unified algorithm such that P{sub tb}, K{sub p} and K{sub pu} for both drugs and environmental chemicals could be predicted. The development of the unified algorithm was accomplished by integrating all mechanistic algorithms previously published to compute the PCs. Furthermore, the algorithm was structured in such a way as to facilitate predictions of the distribution of organic compounds at the macro (i.e. whole tissue) and micro (i.e. cells and fluids) levels. The resulting unified algorithm was applied to compute the rat P{sub tb}, K{sub p} or K{sub pu} of muscle (n = 174), liver (n = 139) and adipose tissue (n = 141) for acidic, neutral, zwitterionic and basic drugs as well as ketones, acetate esters, alcohols, aliphatic hydrocarbons, aromatic hydrocarbons and ethers. The unified algorithm reproduced adequately the values predicted previously by the published algorithms for a total of 142 drugs and chemicals. The sensitivity analysis demonstrated the relative importance of the various compound properties reflective of specific mechanistic determinants relevant to prediction of PC values of drugs and environmental chemicals. Overall, the present unified algorithm uniquely facilitates the computation of macro and micro level PCs for developing organ and cellular-level PBPK models for both chemicals and drugs.

  7. A unified algorithm for predicting partition coefficients for PBPK modeling of drugs and environmental chemicals.

    PubMed

    Peyret, Thomas; Poulin, Patrick; Krishnan, Kannan

    2010-12-15

    The algorithms in the literature focusing to predict tissue:blood PC (P(tb)) for environmental chemicals and tissue:plasma PC based on total (K(p)) or unbound concentration (K(pu)) for drugs differ in their consideration of binding to hemoglobin, plasma proteins and charged phospholipids. The objective of the present study was to develop a unified algorithm such that P(tb), K(p) and K(pu) for both drugs and environmental chemicals could be predicted. The development of the unified algorithm was accomplished by integrating all mechanistic algorithms previously published to compute the PCs. Furthermore, the algorithm was structured in such a way as to facilitate predictions of the distribution of organic compounds at the macro (i.e. whole tissue) and micro (i.e. cells and fluids) levels. The resulting unified algorithm was applied to compute the rat P(tb), K(p) or K(pu) of muscle (n=174), liver (n=139) and adipose tissue (n=141) for acidic, neutral, zwitterionic and basic drugs as well as ketones, acetate esters, alcohols, aliphatic hydrocarbons, aromatic hydrocarbons and ethers. The unified algorithm reproduced adequately the values predicted previously by the published algorithms for a total of 142 drugs and chemicals. The sensitivity analysis demonstrated the relative importance of the various compound properties reflective of specific mechanistic determinants relevant to prediction of PC values of drugs and environmental chemicals. Overall, the present unified algorithm uniquely facilitates the computation of macro and micro level PCs for developing organ and cellular-level PBPK models for both chemicals and drugs.

  8. In Silico Prediction of Physicochemical Properties of Environmental Chemicals Using Molecular Fingerprints and Machine Learning.

    PubMed

    Zang, Qingda; Mansouri, Kamel; Williams, Antony J; Judson, Richard S; Allen, David G; Casey, Warren M; Kleinstreuer, Nicole C

    2017-01-23

    There are little available toxicity data on the vast majority of chemicals in commerce. High-throughput screening (HTS) studies, such as those being carried out by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ToxCast program in partnership with the federal Tox21 research program, can generate biological data to inform models for predicting potential toxicity. However, physicochemical properties are also needed to model environmental fate and transport, as well as exposure potential. The purpose of the present study was to generate an open-source quantitative structure-property relationship (QSPR) workflow to predict a variety of physicochemical properties that would have cross-platform compatibility to integrate into existing cheminformatics workflows. In this effort, decades-old experimental property data sets available within the EPA EPI Suite were reanalyzed using modern cheminformatics workflows to develop updated QSPR models capable of supplying computationally efficient, open, and transparent HTS property predictions in support of environmental modeling efforts. Models were built using updated EPI Suite data sets for the prediction of six physicochemical properties: octanol-water partition coefficient (logP), water solubility (logS), boiling point (BP), melting point (MP), vapor pressure (logVP), and bioconcentration factor (logBCF). The coefficient of determination (R(2)) between the estimated values and experimental data for the six predicted properties ranged from 0.826 (MP) to 0.965 (BP), with model performance for five of the six properties exceeding those from the original EPI Suite models. The newly derived models can be employed for rapid estimation of physicochemical properties within an open-source HTS workflow to inform fate and toxicity prediction models of environmental chemicals.

  9. Toxicity challenges in environmental chemicals: Prediction of human plasma protein binding through quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) models

    EPA Science Inventory

    The present study explores the merit of utilizing available pharmaceutical data to construct a quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) for prediction of the fraction of a chemical unbound to plasma protein (Fub) in environmentally relevant compounds. Independent model...

  10. THE INTEGRATED USE OF COMPUTATIONAL CHEMISTRY, SCANNING PROBE MICROSCOPY, AND VIRTUAL REALITY TO PREDICT THE CHEMICAL REACTIVITY OF ENVIRONMENTAL SURFACES

    EPA Science Inventory

    In the last decade three new techniques scanning probe microscopy (SPM), virtual reality (YR) and computational chemistry ave emerged with the combined capability of a priori predicting the chemically reactivity of environmental surfaces. Computational chemistry provides the cap...

  11. EPA's ToxCast Program for Predicting Hazard and Prioritizing the Toxicity Testing of Environmental Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    An alternative is to perform a set of relatively inexpensive and rapid high throughput screening (HTS) assays, derive signatures predictive of effects or modes of chemical toxicity from the HTS data, then use these predictions to prioritize chemicals for more detailed analysis. T...

  12. A Rat α-Fetoprotein Binding Activity Prediction Model to Facilitate Assessment of the Endocrine Disruption Potential of Environmental Chemicals.

    PubMed

    Hong, Huixiao; Shen, Jie; Ng, Hui Wen; Sakkiah, Sugunadevi; Ye, Hao; Ge, Weigong; Gong, Ping; Xiao, Wenming; Tong, Weida

    2016-03-25

    Endocrine disruptors such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), diethylstilbestrol (DES) and dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) are agents that interfere with the endocrine system and cause adverse health effects. Huge public health concern about endocrine disruptors has arisen. One of the mechanisms of endocrine disruption is through binding of endocrine disruptors with the hormone receptors in the target cells. Entrance of endocrine disruptors into target cells is the precondition of endocrine disruption. The binding capability of a chemical with proteins in the blood affects its entrance into the target cells and, thus, is very informative for the assessment of potential endocrine disruption of chemicals. α-fetoprotein is one of the major serum proteins that binds to a variety of chemicals such as estrogens. To better facilitate assessment of endocrine disruption of environmental chemicals, we developed a model for α-fetoprotein binding activity prediction using the novel pattern recognition method (Decision Forest) and the molecular descriptors calculated from two-dimensional structures by Mold² software. The predictive capability of the model has been evaluated through internal validation using 125 training chemicals (average balanced accuracy of 69%) and external validations using 22 chemicals (balanced accuracy of 71%). Prediction confidence analysis revealed the model performed much better at high prediction confidence. Our results indicate that the model is useful (when predictions are in high confidence) in endocrine disruption risk assessment of environmental chemicals though improvement by increasing number of training chemicals is needed.

  13. A Rat α-Fetoprotein Binding Activity Prediction Model to Facilitate Assessment of the Endocrine Disruption Potential of Environmental Chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Huixiao; Shen, Jie; Ng, Hui Wen; Sakkiah, Sugunadevi; Ye, Hao; Ge, Weigong; Gong, Ping; Xiao, Wenming; Tong, Weida

    2016-01-01

    Endocrine disruptors such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), diethylstilbestrol (DES) and dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) are agents that interfere with the endocrine system and cause adverse health effects. Huge public health concern about endocrine disruptors has arisen. One of the mechanisms of endocrine disruption is through binding of endocrine disruptors with the hormone receptors in the target cells. Entrance of endocrine disruptors into target cells is the precondition of endocrine disruption. The binding capability of a chemical with proteins in the blood affects its entrance into the target cells and, thus, is very informative for the assessment of potential endocrine disruption of chemicals. α-fetoprotein is one of the major serum proteins that binds to a variety of chemicals such as estrogens. To better facilitate assessment of endocrine disruption of environmental chemicals, we developed a model for α-fetoprotein binding activity prediction using the novel pattern recognition method (Decision Forest) and the molecular descriptors calculated from two-dimensional structures by Mold2 software. The predictive capability of the model has been evaluated through internal validation using 125 training chemicals (average balanced accuracy of 69%) and external validations using 22 chemicals (balanced accuracy of 71%). Prediction confidence analysis revealed the model performed much better at high prediction confidence. Our results indicate that the model is useful (when predictions are in high confidence) in endocrine disruption risk assessment of environmental chemicals though improvement by increasing number of training chemicals is needed. PMID:27023588

  14. Essential Set of Molecular Descriptors for ADME Prediction in Drug and Environmental Chemical Space

    EPA Science Inventory

    Historically, the disciplines of pharmacology and toxicology have embraced quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR) and quantitative structure-property relationships (QSPR) to predict ADME properties or biological activities of untested chemicals. The question arises ...

  15. Development and Application of In Vitro Models for Screening Drugs and Environmental Chemicals that Predict Toxicity in Animals and Humans

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Development and Application of In Vitro Models for Screening Drugs and Environmental Chemicals that Predict Toxicity in Animals and Humans (Presented by James McKim, Ph.D., DABT, Founder and Chief Science Officer, CeeTox) (5/25/2012)

  16. The US EPAs ToxCast Program for the Prioritization and Prediction of Environmental Chemical Toxicity

    EPA Science Inventory

    To meet the need for evaluating large numbers of chemicals for potential toxicity, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has initiated a research project call ToxCast that makes use of recent advances in molecular biology and high-throughput screening. These technologies have ...

  17. An Online Prediction Platform to Support the Environmental Sciences (American Chemical Society)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Historical QSAR models are currently utilized across a broad range of applications within the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). These models predict basic physicochemical properties (e.g., logP, aqueous solubility, vapor pressure), which are then incorporated into expo...

  18. From consumption to harvest: Environmental fate prediction of excreted ionizable trace organic chemicals.

    PubMed

    Polesel, Fabio; Plósz, Benedek Gy; Trapp, Stefan

    2015-11-01

    Excreted trace organic chemicals, e.g., pharmaceuticals and biocides, typically undergo incomplete elimination in municipal wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) and are released to surface water via treated effluents and to agricultural soils through sludge amendment and/or irrigation with freshwater or reclaimed wastewater. Recent research has shown the tendency for these substances to accumulate in food crops. In this study, we developed and applied a simulation tool to predict the fate of three ionizable trace chemicals (triclosan-TCS, furosemide-FUR, ciprofloxacin-CIP) from human consumption/excretion up to the accumulation in soil and plant, following field amendment with sewage sludge or irrigation with river water (assuming dilution of WWTP effluent). The simulation tool combines the SimpleTreat model modified for fate prediction of ionizable chemicals in a generic WWTP and a recently developed dynamic soil-plant uptake model. The simulation tool was tested using country-specific (e.g., consumption/emission rates, precipitation and temperature) input data. A Monte Carlo-based approach was adopted to account for the uncertainty associated to physico-chemical and biokinetic model parameters. Results obtained in this study suggest significant accumulation of TCS and CIP in sewage sludge (1.4-2.8 mg kgDW(-1)) as compared to FUR (0.02-0.11 mg kgDW(-1)). For the latter substance, more than half of the influent load (60.1%-72.5%) was estimated to be discharged via WWTP effluent. Specific emission rates (g ha(-1) a(-1)) of FUR to soil via either sludge application or irrigation were up to 300 times lower than for TCS and CIP. Nevertheless, high translocation potential to wheat was predicted for FUR, reaching concentrations up to 4.3 μg kgDW(-1) in grain. Irrigation was found to enhance the relative translocation of FUR to plant (45.3%-48.9% of emission to soil), as compared to sludge application (21.9%-27.6%). A comparison with peer-reviewed literature showed

  19. Environmental toxicological fate prediction of diverse organic chemicals based on steady-state compartmental chemical mass ratio using quantitative structure-fate relationship (QSFR) models.

    PubMed

    Pramanik, Subrata; Roy, Kunal

    2013-07-01

    Four quantitative prediction models for steady-state compartmental chemical mass concentrations (Wn,g) were obtained from structural information, physiochemical properties, degradation rate and transport coefficients of 455 diverse organic chemicals using chemometric tools in a quantitative structure-fate relationship (QSFR) study. The mass ratio assessment of environmentally prevalent organic chemicals may be helpful to predict their toxicological fate in the ecosystems. Four sets of mass ratios [(1) log(Wair) from water emissions (water to air compartment), (2) log(Wair) from air emissions (within different zones of the air compartment), (3) log(Wwater) from water emissions (within different zones of the water compartment) and (4) log(Wwater) from air emissions (air to water compartment)] have been used. The developed models using genetic function approximation followed by multiple linear regression (GFA-MLR) and subsequent partial least squares (PLS) treatment identify only four descriptors for log(Wair) from water emission, six descriptors for log(Wair) from air emission, five descriptors for log(Wwater) from water emission and seven descriptors for log(Wwater) from air emission for predicting efficiently a large number of test set chemicals (ntest=182). The conclusive models suggest that descriptors such as partition coefficients (Kaw, Kow and Ksw), degradation parameters (Ksoil,Kwater and Kair), vapor pressure (Pv), diffusivity (Dwater), spatial descriptors (Jurs-WNSA-1, Jurs-WNSA-2, Jurs-WPSA-3, Jurs-FNSA-3 and Density), thermodynamic descriptors (MolRef and AlogP98), electrotopological state indices (S_dsN, S_ssNH and S_dsCH) are important for predicting the chemical mass ratios. The developed models may be applicable in toxicological fate prediction of diverse chemicals in the ecosystems.

  20. Chemical and Environmental Technology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sheather, Harry

    The two-year curriculum in chemical technology presented in the document is designed to prepare high school graduates for technical positions in the chemical industry. Course outlines are given for general chemistry, chemical calculations, quantitative analysis, environmental chemistry, organic chemistry 1 and 2, instrumental analysis, and…

  1. The Environmental Fate Simulator: A tool for predicting the degradation pathways of organic chemicals in groundwater aquifers

    EPA Science Inventory

    Development of the Environmental Fate Simulator (EFS): • High throughput computational system for providing molecular and environmental descriptors for consumption by EF&T models Requires:  Knowledge of the process science controlling chemical fate and transport  The abil...

  2. Prediction of hydrolysis pathways and kinetics for antibiotics under environmental pH conditions: a quantum chemical study on cephradine.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Haiqin; Xie, Hongbin; Chen, Jingwen; Zhang, Shushen

    2015-02-03

    Understanding hydrolysis pathways and kinetics of many antibiotics that have multiple hydrolyzable functional groups is important for their fate assessment. However, experimental determination of hydrolysis encounters difficulties due to time and cost restraint. We employed the density functional theory and transition state theory to predict the hydrolysis pathways and kinetics of cephradine, a model of cephalosporin with two hydrolyzable groups, two ionization states, two isomers and two nucleophilic attack directions. Results showed that the hydrolysis of cephradine at pH = 8.0 proceeds via opening of the β-lactam ring followed by intramolecular amidation. The predicted rate constants at different pH conditions are of the same order of magnitude as the experimental values, and the predicted products are confirmed by experiment. This study identified a catalytic role of the carboxyl group in the hydrolysis, and implies that the carboxyl group also plays a catalytic role in the hydrolysis of other cephalosporin and penicillin antibiotics. This is a first attempt to quantum chemically predict hydrolysis of an antibiotic with complex pathways, and indicates that to predict hydrolysis products under the environmental pH conditions, the variation of the rate constants for different pathways with pH should be evaluated.

  3. Prediction of Cytochrome P450 Profiles of Environmental Chemicals with QSAR Models Built from Drug-like Molecules

    EPA Science Inventory

    The human cytochrome P450 (CYP450) enzyme family is involved in the biotransformation of many environmental chemicals. As part of the U.S. Tox21 effort, we profiled the CYP450 activity of ~2800 chemicals predominantly of environmental concern against CYP1A2, CYP2C19, CYP2C9, CYP2...

  4. EPAS TOXCAST PROGRAM FOR PREDICTING HAZARD AND PRIORITIZING TOXICITY TESTING OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS(S).

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPAs National Center for Computational Toxicology is developing methods that apply computational chemistry, high-throughput screening (HTS) and genomic technologies to predict potential toxicity and prioritize the use of limited testing resources.

  5. Application of Quantum Chemical Approximations to Environmental Problems: Prediction of Water Solubility for Nitro Compounds

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-11-10

    V Laboratory of Theoretical Chemistry, Department of Molecular Structure, A.V. Bogatsky Physical-Chemical Institute, National Academy of Sciences of...Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Odessa, Ukraine V I C T O R E . K U Z ’ M I N Laboratory of Theoretical Chemistry, Department of Molecular Structure...A.V. Bogatsky Physical-Chemical Institute, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Odessa, Ukraine M O H A M M A D Q A S I M U.S. Army ERDC, Vicksburg

  6. Development of Short Term Immunotoxicological Assays for Prediction of Chronic Toxicological Responses Induced by Environmental Chemicals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-11-25

    dexamethasone, M,~ synthesis , humoral immunity, inmmunotoxicolov,,, mouqe, Lrichloroethvtlene, mixed lymphocytr! reaction, * rye lophosphamide, microsor~al...over the exposure period. Als in this tier was the effect of chemicals on DNA synthesis . For Tier 2, the "lymphocyte response to a T and a B cell...Cell DNA Synthesis ....... .................. 13 Spleen Cell Response to Mitvgens (Tier 2). . . .. ........ 20 Spleen Cell Response to Concanavalin A

  7. Informing the Human Plasma Protein Binding of Environmental Chemicals by Machine Learning in the Pharmaceutical Space: Applicability Domain and Limits of Predictability.

    PubMed

    Ingle, Brandall L; Veber, Brandon C; Nichols, John W; Tornero-Velez, Rogelio

    2016-11-28

    The free fraction of a xenobiotic in plasma (Fub) is an important determinant of chemical adsorption, distribution, metabolism, elimination, and toxicity, yet experimental plasma protein binding data are scarce for environmentally relevant chemicals. The presented work explores the merit of utilizing available pharmaceutical data to predict Fub for environmentally relevant chemicals via machine learning techniques. Quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) models were constructed with k nearest neighbors (kNN), support vector machines (SVM), and random forest (RF) machine learning algorithms from a training set of 1045 pharmaceuticals. The models were then evaluated with independent test sets of pharmaceuticals (200 compounds) and environmentally relevant ToxCast chemicals (406 total, in two groups of 238 and 168 compounds). The selection of a minimal feature set of 10-15 2D molecular descriptors allowed for both informative feature interpretation and practical applicability domain assessment via a bounded box of descriptor ranges and principal component analysis. The diverse pharmaceutical and environmental chemical sets exhibit similarities in terms of chemical space (99-82% overlap), as well as comparable bias and variance in constructed learning curves. All the models exhibit significant predictability with mean absolute errors (MAE) in the range of 0.10-0.18Fub. The models performed best for highly bound chemicals (MAE 0.07-0.12), neutrals (MAE 0.11-0.14), and acids (MAE 0.14-0.17). A consensus model had the highest accuracy across both pharmaceuticals (MAE 0.151-0.155) and environmentally relevant chemicals (MAE 0.110-0.131). The inclusion of the majority of the ToxCast test sets within the AD of the consensus model, coupled with high prediction accuracy for these chemicals, indicates the model provides a QSAR for Fub that is broadly applicable to both pharmaceuticals and environmentally relevant chemicals.

  8. Epigenetics and environmental chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Baccarelli, A; Bollati, V.

    2011-01-01

    Purpose of the review Epigenetics investigates heritable changes in gene expression occurring without changes in DNA sequence. Several epigenetic mechanisms, including DNA methylation, histone modifications, and microRNA (miRNA) expression, can change genome function under exogenous influence. Here, we review current evidence indicating that epigenetic alterations mediate toxicity from environmental chemicals. Recent findings In-vitro, animal, and human investigations have identified several classes of environmental chemicals that modify epigenetic marks, including metals (cadmium, arsenic, nickel, chromium, methylmercury), peroxisome proliferators (trichloroethylene, dichloroacetic acid, trichloroacetic acid), air pollutants (particulate matter, black carbon, benzene), and endocrine-disrupting/reproductive toxicants (diethylstilbestrol, bisphenol A, persistent organic pollutants, dioxin). Most studies conducted so far have been centered on DNA methylation, whereas only a few investigations have studied environmental chemicals in relation to histone modications and miRNA. Summary For several exposures, it has been proved that chemicals can alter epigenetic marks and that the same or similar epigenetic alterations can be found in patients with the disease of concern or in diseased tissues. Future prospective investigations are needed to determine whether exposed subjects develop epigenetic alterations over time and, in turn, which such alterations increase the risk of disease. Also, further research is needed to determine whether environmental epigenetic changes are transmitted transgenerationally. PMID:19663042

  9. Coal Extraction - Environmental Prediction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cecil, C. Blaine; Tewalt, Susan J.

    2002-01-01

    Coal from the Appalachian region has supplied energy to the Nation for more than 200 years. Appalachian coal fueled America through a civil war and helped win two world wars. Appalachian coal has also provided fuel for keeping America warm in the winter and cool in the summer and has served as the basis for the steel, automobile, organic chemicals, chlorine, and aluminum industries. These benefits have not come without environmental costs, however. Coal extraction and utilization have had significant environmental impacts.

  10. Prediction of Cytochrome P450 Profiles of Environmental Chemicals with QSAR Models Built from Drug-like Molecules

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Hongmao; Veith, Henrike; Xia, Menghang; Austin, Christopher P.; Tice, Raymond R.; Huang, Ruili

    2012-01-01

    The human cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzyme family is involved in the biotransformation of many xenobiotics. As part of the U.S. Tox21 Phase I effort, we profiled the CYP activity of approximately three thousand compounds, primarily those of environmental concern, against human CYP1A2, CYP2C19, CYP2C9, CYP2D6, and CYP3A4 isoforms in a quantitative high throughput screening (qHTS) format. In order to evaluate the extent to which computational models built from a drug-like library screened in these five CYP assays under the same conditions can accurately predict the outcome of an environmental compound library, five support vector machines (SVM) models built from over 17,000 drug-like compounds were challenged to predict the CYP activities of the Tox21 compound collection. Although a large fraction of the test compounds fall outside of the applicability domain (AD) of the models, as measured by k-nearest neighbor (k-NN) similarities, the predictions were largely accurate for CYP1A2, CYP2C9, and CYP3A4 ioszymes with area under the receiver operator characteristic curves (AUC-ROC) ranging between 0.82 and 0.84. The lower predictive power of the CYP2C19 model (AUC-ROC = 0.76) is caused by experimental errors and that of the CYP2D6 model (AUC-ROC = 0.76) can be rescued by rebalancing the training data. Our results demonstrate that decomposing molecules into atom types enhanced the coverage of the AD and that computational models built from drug-like molecules can be used to predict the ability of non-drug like compounds to interact with these CYPs. PMID:23459712

  11. Predicting biological effects of environmental mixtures using exposure:activity ratios (EAR) derived from US EPA’s ToxCast data: Retrospective application to chemical monitoring data

    EPA Science Inventory

    Chemical monitoring has been widely used in environmental surveillance to assess exposure to environmental contaminants which could represent potential hazards to exposed organisms. However, the ability to detect chemicals in the environment has rapidly outpaced assessment of pot...

  12. Environmental Chemicals in Breast Milk

    EPA Science Inventory

    Most of the information available on environmental chemicals in breast milk is focused on persistent, lipophilic chemicals; the database on levels of these chemicals has expanded substantially since the 1950s. Currently, various types of chemicals are measured in breast milk and ...

  13. Informing the Human Plasma Protein Binding of Environmental Chemicals by Machine Learning in the Pharmaceutical Space: Applicability Domain and Limits of Predictability

    EPA Science Inventory

    The free fraction of a xenobiotic in plasma (Fub) is an important determinant of chemical adsorption, distribution, metabolism, elimination, and toxicity, yet experimental plasma protein binding data is scarce for environmentally relevant chemicals. The presented work explores th...

  14. Toxicokinetic Triage for Environmental Chemicals.

    PubMed

    Wambaugh, John F; Wetmore, Barbara A; Pearce, Robert; Strope, Cory; Goldsmith, Rocky; Sluka, James P; Sedykh, Alexander; Tropsha, Alex; Bosgra, Sieto; Shah, Imran; Judson, Richard; Thomas, Russell S; Setzer, R Woodrow

    2015-09-01

    Toxicokinetic (TK) models link administered doses to plasma, blood, and tissue concentrations. High-throughput TK (HTTK) performs in vitro to in vivo extrapolation to predict TK from rapid in vitro measurements and chemical structure-based properties. A significant toxicological application of HTTK has been "reverse dosimetry," in which bioactive concentrations from in vitro screening studies are converted into in vivo doses (mg/kg BW/day). These doses are predicted to produce steady-state plasma concentrations that are equivalent to in vitro bioactive concentrations. In this study, we evaluate the impact of the approximations and assumptions necessary for reverse dosimetry and develop methods to determine whether HTTK tools are appropriate or may lead to false conclusions for a particular chemical. Based on literature in vivo data for 87 chemicals, we identified specific properties (eg, in vitro HTTK data, physico-chemical descriptors, and predicted transporter affinities) that correlate with poor HTTK predictive ability. For 271 chemicals we developed a generic HT physiologically based TK (HTPBTK) model that predicts non-steady-state chemical concentration time-courses for a variety of exposure scenarios. We used this HTPBTK model to find that assumptions previously used for reverse dosimetry are usually appropriate, except most notably for highly bioaccumulative compounds. For the thousands of man-made chemicals in the environment that currently have no TK data, we propose a 4-element framework for chemical TK triage that can group chemicals into 7 different categories associated with varying levels of confidence in HTTK predictions. For 349 chemicals with literature HTTK data, we differentiated those chemicals for which HTTK approaches are likely to be sufficient, from those that may require additional data.

  15. Environmental chemical exposures and human epigenetics

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Lifang; Zhang, Xiao; Wang, Dong; Baccarelli, Andrea

    2012-01-01

    Every year more than 13 million deaths worldwide are due to environmental pollutants, and approximately 24% of diseases are caused by environmental exposures that might be averted through preventive measures. Rapidly growing evidence has linked environmental pollutants with epigenetic variations, including changes in DNA methylation, histone modifications and microRNAs. Environ mental chemicals and epigenetic changes All of these mechanisms are likely to play important roles in disease aetiology, and their modifications due to environmental pollutants might provide further understanding of disease aetiology, as well as biomarkers reflecting exposures to environmental pollutants and/or predicting the risk of future disease. We summarize the findings on epigenetic alterations related to environmental chemical exposures, and propose mechanisms of action by means of which the exposures may cause such epigenetic changes. We discuss opportunities, challenges and future directions for future epidemiology research in environmental epigenomics. Future investigations are needed to solve methodological and practical challenges, including uncertainties about stability over time of epigenomic changes induced by the environment, tissue specificity of epigenetic alterations, validation of laboratory methods, and adaptation of bioinformatic and biostatistical methods to high-throughput epigenomics. In addition, there are numerous reports of epigenetic modifications arising following exposure to environmental toxicants, but most have not been directly linked to disease endpoints. To complete our discussion, we also briefly summarize the diseases that have been linked to environmental chemicals-related epigenetic changes. PMID:22253299

  16. Human health and the environment: Predicting plasma protein binding and metabolic clearance rates of environmentally relevant chemicals.

    EPA Science Inventory

    In silico methods provide a rapid, inexpensive means of screening a wide array of environmentally relevant pollutants, pesticides, fungicides and consumer products for further toxicity testing. Physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models bridge the gap between in vitro as...

  17. Predicted no effect concentration derivation as a significant source of variability in environmental hazard assessments of chemicals in aquatic systems: an international analysis.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Thorsten; Diamond, Jerry; Dobson, Stuart; Howe, Paul; Kielhorn, Janet; Koennecker, Gustav; Lee-Steere, Chris; Mangelsdorf, Inge; Schneider, Uwe; Sugaya, Yoshio; Taylor, Ken; Dam, Rick Van; Stauber, Jenny L

    2014-01-01

    Environmental hazard assessments for chemicals are carried out to define an environmentally "safe" level at which, theoretically, the chemical will not negatively affect any exposed biota. Despite this common goal, the methodologies in use are very diverse across different countries and jurisdictions. This becomes particularly obvious when international scientists work together on documents with global scope, e.g., in the World Health Organization (WHO) International Program on Chemical Safety. In this article, we present a study that describes the extent of such variability and analyze the reasons that lead to different outcomes in deriving a "safe level" (termed the predicted no effect concentration [PNEC] throughout this article). For this purpose, we chose 5 chemicals to represent well-known substances for which sufficient high-quality aquatic effects data were available: ethylene glycol, trichloroethylene, nonylphenol, hexachlorobenzene, and copper (Cu). From these data, 2 data sets for each chemical were compiled: the full data set, that contained all information from selected peer-review sources, and the base data set, a subsample of the full set simulating limited data. Scientists from the European Union (EU), United States, Canada, Japan, and Australia independently carried out hazard assessments for each of these chemicals using the same data sets. Their reasoning for key study selection, use of assessment factors, or use of probabilistic methods was comprehensively documented. The observed variation in the PNECs for all chemicals was up to 3 orders of magnitude, and this was not simply due to obvious factors such as the size of the data set or the methodology used. Rather, this was due to individual decisions of the assessors within the scope of the methodology used, especially key study selection, acute versus chronic definitions, and size of assessment factors. Awareness of these factors, together with transparency of the decision-making process, would

  18. Assessment of in vitro high throughput pharmacokinetic data to predict in vivo pharmacokinetic data of environmental chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    Assessing the health risks of the thousands of chemicals in use requires both toxicology and pharmacokinetic (PK) data that can be generated more quickly. For PK, in vitro clearance assays with hepatocytes and serum protein binding assays provide a means to generate high throughp...

  19. Coal extraction - environmental prediction

    SciTech Connect

    C. Blaine Cecil; Susan J. Tewalt

    2002-08-01

    To predict and help minimize the impact of coal extraction in the Appalachian region, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is addressing selected mine-drainage issues through the following four interrelated studies: spatial variability of deleterious materials in coal and coal-bearing strata; kinetics of pyrite oxidation; improved spatial geologic models of the potential for drainage from abandoned coal mines; and methodologies for the remediation of waters discharged from coal mines. As these goals are achieved, the recovery of coal resources will be enhanced. 2 figs.

  20. Prediction of Chemical Function: Model Development and ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Exposure Forecaster (ExpoCast) project is developing both statistical and mechanism-based computational models for predicting exposures to thousands of chemicals, including those in consumer products. The high-throughput (HT) screening-level exposures developed under ExpoCast can be combined with HT screening (HTS) bioactivity data for the risk-based prioritization of chemicals for further evaluation. The functional role (e.g. solvent, plasticizer, fragrance) that a chemical performs can drive both the types of products in which it is found and the concentration in which it is present and therefore impacting exposure potential. However, critical chemical use information (including functional role) is lacking for the majority of commercial chemicals for which exposure estimates are needed. A suite of machine-learning based models for classifying chemicals in terms of their likely functional roles in products based on structure were developed. This effort required collection, curation, and harmonization of publically-available data sources of chemical functional use information from government and industry bodies. Physicochemical and structure descriptor data were generated for chemicals with function data. Machine-learning classifier models for function were then built in a cross-validated manner from the descriptor/function data using the method of random forests. The models were applied to: 1) predict chemi

  1. Chemical-gene interaction networks and causal reasoning for biological effects prediction and prioritization of contaminants for environmental monitoring and surveillance

    EPA Science Inventory

    Evaluating the potential human health and ecological risks associated with exposures to complex chemical mixtures in the environment is one of the main challenges of chemical safety assessment and environmental protection. There is a need for approaches that can help to integrat...

  2. Environmental benefits of chemical propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hayes, Joyce A.; Goldberg, Benjamin E.; Anderson, David M.

    1995-01-01

    This paper identifies the necessity of chemical propulsion to satellite usage and some of the benefits accrued through monitoring global resources and patterns, including the Global Climate Change Model (GCM). The paper also summarized how the satellite observations are used to affect national and international policies. Chemical propulsion, like all environmentally conscious industries, does provide limited, controlled pollutant sources through its manufacture and usage. However, chemical propulsion is the sole source which enables mankind to launch spacecraft and monitor the Earth. The information provided by remote sensing directly affects national and international policies designed to protect the environment and enhance the overall quality of life on Earth. The resultant of chemical propulsion is the capability to reduce overall pollutant emissions to the benefit of mankind.

  3. Toxicokinetic Triage for Environmental Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    Toxicokinetic (TK) models are essential for linking administered doses to blood and tissue concentrations. In vitro-to-in vivo extrapolation (IVIVE) methods have been developed to determine TK from limited in vitro measurements and chemical structure-based property predictions, p...

  4. Prediction of Chemical Function: Model Development and Application

    EPA Science Inventory

    The United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Exposure Forecaster (ExpoCast) project is developing both statistical and mechanism-based computational models for predicting exposures to thousands of chemicals, including those in consumer products. The high-throughput (...

  5. High-Throughput Pharmacokinetics for Environmental Chemicals (SOT)

    EPA Science Inventory

    High throughput screening (HTS) promises to allow prioritization of thousands of environmental chemicals with little or no in vivo information. For bioactivity identified by HTS, toxicokinetic (TK) models are essential to predict exposure thresholds below which no significant bio...

  6. THE TOXCAST PROGRAM FOR PRIORITIZING TOXICITY TESTING OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is developing methods for utilizing computational chemistry, high-throughput screening (HTS) and various toxicogenomic technologies to predict potential for toxicity and prioritize limited testing resources towards chemicals...

  7. Prediction of rodent carcinogenicity for 30 chemicals

    SciTech Connect

    Ashby, J.

    1996-10-01

    Predictions of carcinogenic activity are made for 30 chemicals currently being assessed for rodent carcinogenicity by the U.S. National Toxicology Program. The predictions are based upon the chemical structure, the anticipated or reported mutagenicity, and the reported sub-chronic toxicity of each chemical. It is predicted that 13 chemicals will be noncarcinogenic to rodents, that 7 will be genotoxic carcinogens, and that 10 may show some evidence of presumed nongenotoxic rodent carcinogenesis. 3 refs., 1 fig.

  8. Integrating Biological and Chemical Data for Hepatotoxicity Prediction (SOT)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. EPA ToxCastTM program is screening thousands of environmental chemicals for bioactivity using hundreds of high-throughput in vitro assays to build predictive models of toxicity. A set of 677 chemicals were represented by 711 bioactivity descriptors (from ToxCast assays),...

  9. Learning to predict chemical reactions.

    PubMed

    Kayala, Matthew A; Azencott, Chloé-Agathe; Chen, Jonathan H; Baldi, Pierre

    2011-09-26

    Being able to predict the course of arbitrary chemical reactions is essential to the theory and applications of organic chemistry. Approaches to the reaction prediction problems can be organized around three poles corresponding to: (1) physical laws; (2) rule-based expert systems; and (3) inductive machine learning. Previous approaches at these poles, respectively, are not high throughput, are not generalizable or scalable, and lack sufficient data and structure to be implemented. We propose a new approach to reaction prediction utilizing elements from each pole. Using a physically inspired conceptualization, we describe single mechanistic reactions as interactions between coarse approximations of molecular orbitals (MOs) and use topological and physicochemical attributes as descriptors. Using an existing rule-based system (Reaction Explorer), we derive a restricted chemistry data set consisting of 1630 full multistep reactions with 2358 distinct starting materials and intermediates, associated with 2989 productive mechanistic steps and 6.14 million unproductive mechanistic steps. And from machine learning, we pose identifying productive mechanistic steps as a statistical ranking, information retrieval problem: given a set of reactants and a description of conditions, learn a ranking model over potential filled-to-unfilled MO interactions such that the top-ranked mechanistic steps yield the major products. The machine learning implementation follows a two-stage approach, in which we first train atom level reactivity filters to prune 94.00% of nonproductive reactions with a 0.01% error rate. Then, we train an ensemble of ranking models on pairs of interacting MOs to learn a relative productivity function over mechanistic steps in a given system. Without the use of explicit transformation patterns, the ensemble perfectly ranks the productive mechanism at the top 89.05% of the time, rising to 99.86% of the time when the top four are considered. Furthermore, the system

  10. Learning to Predict Chemical Reactions

    PubMed Central

    Kayala, Matthew A.; Azencott, Chloé-Agathe; Chen, Jonathan H.

    2011-01-01

    Being able to predict the course of arbitrary chemical reactions is essential to the theory and applications of organic chemistry. Approaches to the reaction prediction problems can be organized around three poles corresponding to: (1) physical laws; (2) rule-based expert systems; and (3) inductive machine learning. Previous approaches at these poles respectively are not high-throughput, are not generalizable or scalable, or lack sufficient data and structure to be implemented. We propose a new approach to reaction prediction utilizing elements from each pole. Using a physically inspired conceptualization, we describe single mechanistic reactions as interactions between coarse approximations of molecular orbitals (MOs) and use topological and physicochemical attributes as descriptors. Using an existing rule-based system (Reaction Explorer), we derive a restricted chemistry dataset consisting of 1630 full multi-step reactions with 2358 distinct starting materials and intermediates, associated with 2989 productive mechanistic steps and 6.14 million unproductive mechanistic steps. And from machine learning, we pose identifying productive mechanistic steps as a statistical ranking, information retrieval, problem: given a set of reactants and a description of conditions, learn a ranking model over potential filled-to-unfilled MO interactions such that the top ranked mechanistic steps yield the major products. The machine learning implementation follows a two-stage approach, in which we first train atom level reactivity filters to prune 94.00% of non-productive reactions with a 0.01% error rate. Then, we train an ensemble of ranking models on pairs of interacting MOs to learn a relative productivity function over mechanistic steps in a given system. Without the use of explicit transformation patterns, the ensemble perfectly ranks the productive mechanism at the top 89.05% of the time, rising to 99.86% of the time when the top four are considered. Furthermore, the system

  11. ENVIRONMENTAL ENGINEERING AND ENDOCRINE DISRUPTING CHEMICALS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Endocrine disruptors are a class of chemicals of growing interest to the environmental community. USEPA's Risk Assessment Forum defined an endocrine disrupting chemical (EDC) as "an exogenous agent that interferes with the synthesis, secretion, transport, binding, action, or elim...

  12. Predicting skin permeability from complex chemical mixtures

    SciTech Connect

    Riviere, Jim E. . E-mail: Jim_Riviere@ncsu.edu; Brooks, James D.

    2005-10-15

    Occupational and environmental exposure to topical chemicals is usually in the form of complex chemical mixtures, yet risk assessment is based on experimentally derived data from individual chemical exposures from a single, usually aqueous vehicle, or from computed physiochemical properties. We present an approach using hybrid quantitative structure permeation relationships (QSPeR) models where absorption through porcine skin flow-through diffusion cells is well predicted using a QSPeR model describing the individual penetrants, coupled with a mixture factor (MF) that accounts for physicochemical properties of the vehicle/mixture components. The baseline equation is log k {sub p} = c + mMF + a{sigma}{alpha} {sub 2} {sup H} + b{sigma}{beta} {sub 2} {sup H} + s{pi} {sub 2} {sup H} + rR {sub 2} + vV {sub x} where {sigma}{alpha} {sub 2} {sup H} is the hydrogen-bond donor acidity, {sigma}{beta} {sub 2} {sup H} is the hydrogen-bond acceptor basicity, {pi} {sub 2} {sup H} is the dipolarity/polarizability, R {sub 2} represents the excess molar refractivity, and V {sub x} is the McGowan volume of the penetrants of interest; c, m, a, b, s, r, and v are strength coefficients coupling these descriptors to skin permeability (k {sub p}) of 12 penetrants (atrazine, chlorpyrifos, ethylparathion, fenthion, methylparathion, nonylphenol, {rho}-nitrophenol, pentachlorophenol, phenol, propazine, simazine, and triazine) in 24 mixtures. Mixtures consisted of full factorial combinations of vehicles (water, ethanol, propylene glycol) and additives (sodium lauryl sulfate, methyl nicotinate). An additional set of 4 penetrants (DEET, SDS, permethrin, ricinoleic acid) in different mixtures were included to assess applicability of this approach. This resulted in a dataset of 16 compounds administered in 344 treatment combinations. Across all exposures with no MF, R{sup 2} for absorption was 0.62. With the MF, correlations increased up to 0.78. Parameters correlated to the MF include refractive

  13. DESIGNING ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY CHEMICAL PROCESSES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The design of a chemical process involves many aspects: from profitability, flexibility and reliability to safety to the environment. While each of these is important, in this work, the focus will be on profitability and the environment. Key to the study of these aspects is the ...

  14. HUMAN HEALTH IMPACT OF ENVIRONMENTAL ESTROGENIC CHEMICALS

    EPA Science Inventory

    HUMAN HEALTH IMPACT OF ENVIRONMENTAL ESTROGENIC CHEMICALS.

    Robert J. Kavlock, Reproductive Toxicology Division, NHEERL, ORD, US Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC USA.

    Over the past several decades a hypothesis has been put forth that a numb...

  15. Environmental Chemicals and Nervous System Dysfunction 1

    PubMed Central

    Damstra, Terri

    1978-01-01

    Selected examples of associations between nervous system diseases and exposures to occupational and environmental chemicals have been reviewed. Recent outbreaks of human neurotoxicity from both wellknown and previously unknown toxicants reemphasize the need for the medical community to give increased attention to chemical causes of nervous system dysfunction. PMID:87062

  16. The Toxicity Data Landscape for Environmental Chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Judson, Richard; Richard, Ann; Dix, David J.; Houck, Keith; Martin, Matthew; Kavlock, Robert; Dellarco, Vicki; Henry, Tala; Holderman, Todd; Sayre, Philip; Tan, Shirlee; Carpenter, Thomas; Smith, Edwin

    2009-01-01

    Objective Thousands of chemicals are in common use, but only a portion of them have undergone significant toxicologic evaluation, leading to the need to prioritize the remainder for targeted testing. To address this issue, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other organizations are developing chemical screening and prioritization programs. As part of these efforts, it is important to catalog, from widely dispersed sources, the toxicology information that is available. The main objective of this analysis is to define a list of environmental chemicals that are candidates for the U.S. EPA screening and prioritization process, and to catalog the available toxicology information. Data sources We are developing ACToR (Aggregated Computational Toxicology Resource), which combines information for hundreds of thousands of chemicals from > 200 public sources, including the U.S. EPA, National Institutes of Health, Food and Drug Administration, corresponding agencies in Canada, Europe, and Japan, and academic sources. Data extraction ACToR contains chemical structure information; physical–chemical properties; in vitro assay data; tabular in vivo data; summary toxicology calls (e.g., a statement that a chemical is considered to be a human carcinogen); and links to online toxicology summaries. Here, we use data from ACToR to assess the toxicity data landscape for environmental chemicals. Data synthesis We show results for a set of 9,912 environmental chemicals being considered for analysis as part of the U.S. EPA ToxCast screening and prioritization program. These include high-and medium-production-volume chemicals, pesticide active and inert ingredients, and drinking water contaminants. Conclusions Approximately two-thirds of these chemicals have at least limited toxicity summaries available. About one-quarter have been assessed in at least one highly curated toxicology evaluation database such as the U.S. EPA Toxicology Reference Database, U.S. EPA Integrated

  17. Environmental chemicals and microRNAs

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Lifang; Wang, Dong; Baccarelli, Andrea

    2013-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are short single-stranded non-coding molecules that function as negative regulators to silence or suppress gene expression. Aberrant miRNA expression has been implicated in a several cellular processes and pathogenic pathways of a number of diseases. Evidence is rapidly growing that miRNA regulation of gene expression may be affected by environmental chemicals. These environmental exposures include those that have frequently been associated with chronic diseases, such as heavy metals, air pollution, bisphenol A, and cigarette smoking. In this article, we review the published data on miRNAs in relation to the exposure to several environmental chemicals, and discuss the potential mechanisms that may link environmental chemicals to miRNA alterations. We further discuss the challenges in environmental-miRNA research and possible future directions. The cumulating evidence linking miRNAs to environmental chemicals, coupled with the unique regulatory role of miRNAs in gene expression, makes miRNAs potential biomarkers for better understanding the mechanisms of environmental diseases. PMID:21609724

  18. Prioritizing Environmental Chemicals for Obesity and Diabetes ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Background: Diabetes and obesity are major threats to public health in the US and abroad. Understanding the role chemicals in our environment play in the development of these conditions is an emerging issue in environmental health, although identifying and prioritizing chemicals for testing beyond those already implicated in the literature is a challenge. This review is intended to help researchers generate hypotheses about chemicals potentially contributing to diabetes and obesity-related health outcomes by summarizing relevant findings from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ToxCast high-throughput screening (HTS) program. Objectives: To develop new hypotheses around environmental chemicals of potential interest for diabetes- or obesity-related outcomes using high throughput screening data. Methods: Identify ToxCast assay targets relevant to several biological processes related to diabetes and obesity (insulin sensitivity in peripheral tissue, pancreatic islet and beta cell function, adipocyte dierentiation, and feeding behavior) and present chemical screening data against those assay targets to identify chemicals of potential interest. Discussion: Results of this screening-level analysis suggest that the spectrum of environmental chemicals to consider in research related to diabetes and obesity is much broader than indicated from research papers and reviews published in the peer-reviewed literature. Testing of hypotheses based on ToxCast data will a

  19. Validated predictive modelling of the environmental resistome

    PubMed Central

    Amos, Gregory CA; Gozzard, Emma; Carter, Charlotte E; Mead, Andrew; Bowes, Mike J; Hawkey, Peter M; Zhang, Lihong; Singer, Andrew C; Gaze, William H; Wellington, Elizabeth M H

    2015-01-01

    Multi-drug-resistant bacteria pose a significant threat to public health. The role of the environment in the overall rise in antibiotic-resistant infections and risk to humans is largely unknown. This study aimed to evaluate drivers of antibiotic-resistance levels across the River Thames catchment, model key biotic, spatial and chemical variables and produce predictive models for future risk assessment. Sediment samples from 13 sites across the River Thames basin were taken at four time points across 2011 and 2012. Samples were analysed for class 1 integron prevalence and enumeration of third-generation cephalosporin-resistant bacteria. Class 1 integron prevalence was validated as a molecular marker of antibiotic resistance; levels of resistance showed significant geospatial and temporal variation. The main explanatory variables of resistance levels at each sample site were the number, proximity, size and type of surrounding wastewater-treatment plants. Model 1 revealed treatment plants accounted for 49.5% of the variance in resistance levels. Other contributing factors were extent of different surrounding land cover types (for example, Neutral Grassland), temporal patterns and prior rainfall; when modelling all variables the resulting model (Model 2) could explain 82.9% of variations in resistance levels in the whole catchment. Chemical analyses correlated with key indicators of treatment plant effluent and a model (Model 3) was generated based on water quality parameters (contaminant and macro- and micro-nutrient levels). Model 2 was beta tested on independent sites and explained over 78% of the variation in integron prevalence showing a significant predictive ability. We believe all models in this study are highly useful tools for informing and prioritising mitigation strategies to reduce the environmental resistome. PMID:25679532

  20. Human Stem Cell Derived Cardiomyocytes: An Alternative Model to Evaluate Environmental Chemical Cardiac Safety and Development of Predictive Adverse Outcome Pathways

    EPA Science Inventory

    Chemical spills and associated deaths in the US has increased 2.6-fold and 16-fold from 1983 to 2012, respectfully. In addition, the number of chemicals to which humans are exposed to in the environment has increased almost 10-fold from 2001 to 2013 within the US. Internationally...

  1. Toxicokinetic Triage for Environmental Chemicals | Science ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Toxicokinetic (TK) models are essential for linking administered doses to blood and tissue concentrations. In vitro-to-in vivo extrapolation (IVIVE) methods have been developed to determine TK from limited in vitro measurements and chemical structure-based property predictions, providing a less resource–intensive alternative to traditional in vivo TK approaches. High throughput TK (HTTK) methods use IVIVE to estimate doses that produce steady-state plasma concentrations equivalent to those producing biological activity in in vitro screening studies (e.g., ToxCast). In this study, the domain of applicability and assumptions of HTTK approaches were evaluated using both in vivo data and simulation analysis. Based on in vivo data for 87 chemicals, specific properties (e.g., in vitro HTTK data, physico-chemical descriptors, chemical structure, and predicted transporter affinities) were identified that correlate with poor HTTK predictive ability. For 350 xenobiotics with literature HTTK data, we then differentiated those xenobiotics for which HTTK approaches are likely to be sufficient, from those that may require additional data. For 272 chemicals we also developed a HT physiologically-based TK (HTPBTK) model that requires somewhat greater information than a steady-state model, but allows non-steady state dynamics and can predict chemical concentration time-courses for a variety of exposure scenarios, tissues, and species. We used this HTPBTK model to show that the

  2. ToxCast: Developing Predictive Signatures of Chemically Induced Toxicity (Developing Predictive Bioactivity Signatures from ToxCasts HTS Data)

    EPA Science Inventory

    ToxCast, the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s chemical prioritization research program, is developing methods for utilizing computational chemistry, bioactivity profiling and toxicogenomic data to predict potential for toxicity and prioritize limited testing resour...

  3. High throughput heuristics for prioritizing human exposure to environmental chemicals.

    PubMed

    Wambaugh, John F; Wang, Anran; Dionisio, Kathie L; Frame, Alicia; Egeghy, Peter; Judson, Richard; Setzer, R Woodrow

    2014-11-04

    The risk posed to human health by any of the thousands of untested anthropogenic chemicals in our environment is a function of both the hazard presented by the chemical and the extent of exposure. However, many chemicals lack estimates of exposure intake, limiting the understanding of health risks. We aim to develop a rapid heuristic method to determine potential human exposure to chemicals for application to the thousands of chemicals with little or no exposure data. We used Bayesian methodology to infer ranges of exposure consistent with biomarkers identified in urine samples from the U.S. population by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). We performed linear regression on inferred exposure for demographic subsets of NHANES demarked by age, gender, and weight using chemical descriptors and use information from multiple databases and structure-based calculators. Five descriptors are capable of explaining roughly 50% of the variability in geometric means across 106 NHANES chemicals for all the demographic groups, including children aged 6-11. We use these descriptors to estimate human exposure to 7968 chemicals, the majority of which have no other quantitative exposure prediction. For thousands of chemicals with no other information, this approach allows forecasting of average exposure intake of environmental chemicals.

  4. Health and environmental effects of complex chemical mixtures: proceedings

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1985-01-01

    The Office of Health and Environmental Research (OHER) of the Department of Energy supports a broad long-term research program on human health and environmental effects from potential exposure to energy-related complex chemical mixtures. The program seeks basic mechanistic data on the effects of complex mixtures at the cellular, molecular, and whole animal levels to aid in predicting human health effects and seeks ecological data on biological and physical transformations in the mixtures, concentrations of the mixtures in various compartments of the environment, and potential routes for human exposure to these mixtures (e.g., food chain). On June 17-18, 1985, OHER held its First Annual Technical Meeting on the Complex Chemical Mixtures Program in Chicago, IL. The primary purpose of the meeting was to enable principal investigators to report the research status and accomplishments of ongoing complex chemical mixture studies supported by OHER. To help focus future research directions round table discussions were conducted.

  5. The chemical and environmental property space of REACH chemicals.

    PubMed

    Öberg, Tomas; Iqbal, M Sarfraz

    2012-05-01

    The European regulation on chemicals, REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals), came into force on 1 June 2007. With pre-registration complete in 2008, data for these substances may provide an overview of the expected chemical space and its characteristics. In this paper, using various in silico computation tools, we evaluate 48782 neutral organic compounds from the list to identify hazardous and safe compounds. Two different classification schemes (modified Verhaar and ECOSAR) identified between 17% and 25% of the compounds as expressing only baseline toxicity (narcosis). A smaller portion could be identified as reactive (19%) or specifically acting (2.7%), while the majority were non-assigned (61%). Overall environmental persistence, bioaccumulation and long-range transport potential were evaluated using structure-activity relationships and a multimedia fugacity-based model. A surprisingly high proportion of compounds (20%), mainly aromatic and halogenated, had a very high estimated persistence (>195 d). The proportion of compounds with a very high estimated bioconcentration or bioaccumulation factor (>5000) was substantially less (6.9%). Finally, a list was compiled of those compounds within the applicability domain of the models used, meeting both persistence and bioaccumulation criteria, and with a long-range transport potential comparable to PCB. This list of 68 potential persistent organic pollutants contained many well-known compounds (all halogenated), but notably also five fluorinated compounds that were not included in the EINECS inventory. This study demonstrates the usability of in silico tools for identification of potentially environmentally hazardous chemicals.

  6. Chemical shift prediction for denatured proteins.

    PubMed

    Prestegard, James H; Sahu, Sarata C; Nkari, Wendy K; Morris, Laura C; Live, David; Gruta, Christian

    2013-02-01

    While chemical shift prediction has played an important role in aspects of protein NMR that include identification of secondary structure, generation of torsion angle constraints for structure determination, and assignment of resonances in spectra of intrinsically disordered proteins, interest has arisen more recently in using it in alternate assignment strategies for crosspeaks in (1)H-(15)N HSQC spectra of sparsely labeled proteins. One such approach involves correlation of crosspeaks in the spectrum of the native protein with those observed in the spectrum of the denatured protein, followed by assignment of the peaks in the latter spectrum. As in the case of disordered proteins, predicted chemical shifts can aid in these assignments. Some previously developed empirical formulas for chemical shift prediction have depended on basis data sets of 20 pentapeptides. In each case the central residue was varied among the 20 amino common acids, with the flanking residues held constant throughout the given series. However, previous choices of solvent conditions and flanking residues make the parameters in these formulas less than ideal for general application to denatured proteins. Here, we report (1)H and (15)N shifts for a set of alanine based pentapeptides under the low pH urea denaturing conditions that are more appropriate for sparse label assignments. New parameters have been derived and a Perl script was created to facilitate comparison with other parameter sets. A small, but significant, improvement in shift predictions for denatured ubiquitin is demonstrated.

  7. Predicting chemical impacts on vertebrate endocrine systems.

    PubMed

    Nichols, John W; Breen, Miyuki; Denver, Robert J; Distefano, Joseph J; Edwards, Jeremy S; Hoke, Robert A; Volz, David C; Zhang, Xiaowei

    2011-01-01

    Animals have evolved diverse protective mechanisms for responding to toxic chemicals of both natural and anthropogenic origin. From a governmental regulatory perspective, these protective responses complicate efforts to establish acceptable levels of chemical exposure. To explore this issue, we considered vertebrate endocrine systems as potential targets for environmental contaminants. Using the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid (HPT), hypothalamic-pituitary-gonad (HPG), and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axes as case examples, we identified features of these systems that allow them to accommodate and recover from chemical insults. In doing so, a distinction was made between effects on adults and those on developing organisms. This distinction was required because endocrine system disruption in early life stages may alter development of organs and organ systems, resulting in permanent changes in phenotypic expression later in life. Risk assessments of chemicals that impact highly regulated systems must consider the dynamics of these systems in relation to complex environmental exposures. A largely unanswered question is whether successful accommodation to a toxic insult exerts a fitness cost on individual animals, resulting in adverse consequences for populations. Mechanistically based mathematical models of endocrine systems provide a means for better understanding accommodation and recovery. In the short term, these models can be used to design experiments and interpret study findings. Over the long term, a set of validated models could be used to extrapolate limited in vitro and in vivo testing data to a broader range of untested chemicals, species, and exposure scenarios. With appropriate modification, Tier 2 assays developed in support of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program could be used to assess the potential for accommodation and recovery and inform the development of mechanistically based models.

  8. Priority Environmental Chemical Contaminants in Meat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brambilla, Gianfranco; Iamiceli, Annalaura; di Domenico, Alessandro

    Generally, foods of animal origin play an important role in determining the exposure of human beings to contaminants of both biological and chemical origins (Ropkins & Beck, 2002; Lievaart et al., 2005). A potentially large number of chemicals could be considered, several of them deserving a particular attention due to their occurrence (contaminations levels and frequencies) and intake scenarios reflecting the differences existing in the economical, environmental, social and ecological contexts in which the “from-farm-to-fork” activities related to meat production are carried out (FAO - Food and Agriculture Organization, 2008).

  9. Predicting the bioconcentration factor of highly hydrophobic organic chemicals.

    PubMed

    Garg, Rajni; Smith, Carr J

    2014-07-01

    Bioconcentration refers to the process of uptake and buildup of chemicals in living organisms. Experimental measurement of bioconcentration factor (BCF) is time-consuming and expensive, and is not feasible for a large number of chemicals of regulatory concern. Quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) models are used for estimating BCF values to help in risk assessment of a chemical. This paper presents the results of a QSAR study conducted to address an important problem encountered in the prediction of the BCF of highly hydrophobic chemicals. A new QSAR model is derived using a dataset of diverse organic chemicals previously tested in a United States Environmental Protection Agency laboratory. It is noted that the linear relationship between the BCF and hydrophobic parameter, i.e., calculated octanol-water partition coefficient (ClogP), breaks down for highly hydrophobic chemicals. The parabolic QSAR equation, log BCF=3.036 ClogP-0.197 ClogP(2)-0.808 MgVol (n=28, r(2)=0.817, q(2)=0.761, s=0.558) (experimental log BCF range=0.44-5.29, ClogP range=3.16-11.27), suggests that a non-linear relationship between BCF and the hydrophobic parameter, along with inclusion of additional molecular size, weight and/or volume parameters, should be considered while developing a QSAR model for more reliable prediction of the BCF of highly hydrophobic chemicals.

  10. Alterations in macrophage functions by environmental chemicals.

    PubMed Central

    Gardner, D E

    1984-01-01

    The establishment of infectious diseases is rarely entirely attributed to a single entity, but instead is the result of a primary stress and one or more secondary factors that interfere with homeostasis and the ability of the host to cope with the primary etiologic assault. Any environmental chemical that can suppress the normal functioning of the host's body defenses would be expected to increase the risk of the host to such diseases. Within the lung, the alveolar macrophages are the crucial elements responsible for defending the body against such airborne viable agents. The effects of inhaled gases and particulates on these defense cells are a major concern of the environmental health scientist since such chemicals have the capability of adversely affecting the integrity and functioning of these pulmonary defense cells. The objective of this report is to provide an overview that will improve our understanding of how a variety of environmental chemicals can alter the biochemical, physiological and immunological functioning of these cells. PMID:6376106

  11. Multiple Classes of Environmental Chemicals are Associated ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Biomonitoring of human tissues and fluids has shown that virtually all individuals, worldwide, carry a “body burden” of synthetic chemicals (Thornton et al. 2002; CDC 2009). Although the measurement of an environmental chemical in a person’s tissues or fluids is an indication of exposure, it does not by itself mean that the chemical or the exposure concentration is sufficient to cause a disease or an adverse effect. However, since humans are exposed to multiple chemicals, there may be a combination effect (e.g., additive, synergistic) on health risks associated with exposure even at low levels (Kortenkamp 2008). Further, biomonitoring studies show that humans carry a body burden of multiple classes of contaminants which are often not studied together. We used the 2003-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey to evaluate the relationship between alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and 53 environmental contaminants across six classes (metals; perfluorinated compounds [PFCs]; phthalates; phenols; coplanar and non-dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls [PCBs]) using a novel method.

  12. INTERSPECIES CORRELATION ESTIMATES PREDICT PROTECTIVE ENVIRONMENTAL CONCENTRATIONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental risk assessments often use multiple single species toxicity test results and species sensitivity distributions (SSDs) to derive a predicted no-effect concentration in the environment, typically the 5th percentile of the SSD, termed the HC5. The shape and location of...

  13. Predicting hepatotoxicity using ToxCast in vitro bioactivity and chemical structure

    EPA Science Inventory

    Background: The U.S. EPA ToxCastTM program is screening thousands of environmental chemicals for bioactivity using hundreds of high-throughput in vitro assays to build predictive models of toxicity. We represented chemicals based on bioactivity and chemical structure descriptors ...

  14. Use of the Chemical Transformation Simulator as a Parameterization Tool for Modeling the Environmental Fate of Organic Chemicals and their Transformation Products

    EPA Science Inventory

    A Chemical Transformation Simulator is a web-based system for predicting transformation pathways and physicochemical properties of organic chemicals. Role in Environmental Modeling • Screening tool for identifying likely transformation products in the environment • Parameteri...

  15. Influences of Environmental Chemicals on Atopic Dermatitis

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Atopic dermatitis is a chronic inflammatory skin condition including severe pruritus, xerosis, visible eczematous skin lesions that mainly begin early in life. Atopic dermatitis exerts a profound impact on the quality of life of patients and their families. The estimated lifetime prevalence of atopic dermatitis has increased 2~3 fold during over the past 30 years, especially in urban areas in industrialized countries, emphasizing the importance of life-style and environment in the pathogenesis of atopic diseases. While the interplay of individual genetic predisposition and environmental factors contribute to the development of atopic dermatitis, the recent increase in the prevalence of atopic dermatitis might be attributed to increased exposure to various environmental factors rather than alterations in human genome. In recent decades, there has been an increasing exposure to chemicals from a variety of sources. In this study, the effects of various environmental chemicals we face in everyday life - air pollutants, contact allergens and skin irritants, ingredients in cosmetics and personal care products, and food additives - on the prevalence and severity of atopic dermatitis are reviewed. PMID:26191377

  16. ToxCast: Developing Predictive Signatures of Chemically Induced Toxicity (S)

    EPA Science Inventory

    ToxCast, the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s chemical prioritization research program, is developing methods for utilizing computational chemistry, bioactivity profiling and toxicogenomic data to predict potential for toxicity and prioritize limited testing resour...

  17. Systematic chemical-genetic and chemical-chemical interaction datasets for prediction of compound synergism

    PubMed Central

    Wildenhain, Jan; Spitzer, Michaela; Dolma, Sonam; Jarvik, Nick; White, Rachel; Roy, Marcia; Griffiths, Emma; Bellows, David S.; Wright, Gerard D.; Tyers, Mike

    2016-01-01

    The network structure of biological systems suggests that effective therapeutic intervention may require combinations of agents that act synergistically. However, a dearth of systematic chemical combination datasets have limited the development of predictive algorithms for chemical synergism. Here, we report two large datasets of linked chemical-genetic and chemical-chemical interactions in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We screened 5,518 unique compounds against 242 diverse yeast gene deletion strains to generate an extended chemical-genetic matrix (CGM) of 492,126 chemical-gene interaction measurements. This CGM dataset contained 1,434 genotype-specific inhibitors, termed cryptagens. We selected 128 structurally diverse cryptagens and tested all pairwise combinations to generate a benchmark dataset of 8,128 pairwise chemical-chemical interaction tests for synergy prediction, termed the cryptagen matrix (CM). An accompanying database resource called ChemGRID was developed to enable analysis, visualisation and downloads of all data. The CGM and CM datasets will facilitate the benchmarking of computational approaches for synergy prediction, as well as chemical structure-activity relationship models for anti-fungal drug discovery. PMID:27874849

  18. Systematic chemical-genetic and chemical-chemical interaction datasets for prediction of compound synergism.

    PubMed

    Wildenhain, Jan; Spitzer, Michaela; Dolma, Sonam; Jarvik, Nick; White, Rachel; Roy, Marcia; Griffiths, Emma; Bellows, David S; Wright, Gerard D; Tyers, Mike

    2016-11-22

    The network structure of biological systems suggests that effective therapeutic intervention may require combinations of agents that act synergistically. However, a dearth of systematic chemical combination datasets have limited the development of predictive algorithms for chemical synergism. Here, we report two large datasets of linked chemical-genetic and chemical-chemical interactions in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We screened 5,518 unique compounds against 242 diverse yeast gene deletion strains to generate an extended chemical-genetic matrix (CGM) of 492,126 chemical-gene interaction measurements. This CGM dataset contained 1,434 genotype-specific inhibitors, termed cryptagens. We selected 128 structurally diverse cryptagens and tested all pairwise combinations to generate a benchmark dataset of 8,128 pairwise chemical-chemical interaction tests for synergy prediction, termed the cryptagen matrix (CM). An accompanying database resource called ChemGRID was developed to enable analysis, visualisation and downloads of all data. The CGM and CM datasets will facilitate the benchmarking of computational approaches for synergy prediction, as well as chemical structure-activity relationship models for anti-fungal drug discovery.

  19. Environmental remediation monitoring using chemical sensors

    SciTech Connect

    Dong X. Li

    1996-12-31

    Monitoring is one of the most critical steps in environmental site remediation. However, the conventional technique of monitoring {open_quotes}inlet{close_quotes} and {open_quotes}outlet{close_quotes} of a process stream is no longer applicable in many in-situ remedial processes such as bioventing, biosparging, and intrinsic bioremediation. Traditional soil sampling and analysis is also unsuitable for monitoring biodegradation process because of chemical and biological inhomogeneity in soil. Soil gas measurement, on the other hand, is one of the few techniques available which is ideally suited for monitoring in-situ processes, since bioremediation processes involve gaseous components such as oxygen and carbon dioxide. In addition to oxygen and carbon dioxide, contaminant vapors and other trace gaseous components found in the pores of unsaturated soils also provide information on the spatial distribution and the extent of biodegradation. These gaseous components are very mobile, which are ideal analytes for chemical sensors. In this study, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and hydrocarbon subsurface chemical sensors were employed for monitoring in-situ bioremediation of petroleum hydrocarbon contaminated soils.

  20. Predictive Modeling of Chemical Hazard by Integrating Numerical Descriptors of Chemical Structures and Short-term Toxicity Assay Data

    PubMed Central

    Rusyn, Ivan; Sedykh, Alexander; Guyton, Kathryn Z.; Tropsha, Alexander

    2012-01-01

    Quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) models are widely used for in silico prediction of in vivo toxicity of drug candidates or environmental chemicals, adding value to candidate selection in drug development or in a search for less hazardous and more sustainable alternatives for chemicals in commerce. The development of traditional QSAR models is enabled by numerical descriptors representing the inherent chemical properties that can be easily defined for any number of molecules; however, traditional QSAR models often have limited predictive power due to the lack of data and complexity of in vivo endpoints. Although it has been indeed difficult to obtain experimentally derived toxicity data on a large number of chemicals in the past, the results of quantitative in vitro screening of thousands of environmental chemicals in hundreds of experimental systems are now available and continue to accumulate. In addition, publicly accessible toxicogenomics data collected on hundreds of chemicals provide another dimension of molecular information that is potentially useful for predictive toxicity modeling. These new characteristics of molecular bioactivity arising from short-term biological assays, i.e., in vitro screening and/or in vivo toxicogenomics data can now be exploited in combination with chemical structural information to generate hybrid QSAR–like quantitative models to predict human toxicity and carcinogenicity. Using several case studies, we illustrate the benefits of a hybrid modeling approach, namely improvements in the accuracy of models, enhanced interpretation of the most predictive features, and expanded applicability domain for wider chemical space coverage. PMID:22387746

  1. Environmental effects of oilfield chemicals on composite

    SciTech Connect

    Sorem, R.M.

    1998-12-31

    This paper presents a feasibility study of the effects of oilfield chemicals on composite materials. In this initial study only hydrochloric acid is considered. Initial attempts were made to test stressed specimens, but results were very poor. Subsequent testing was performed to determine how the composite material constituents reacted to the hydrochloric acid. The initial testing was performed on tubular specimens with axial and essentially hoop wound fibers of different materials with different resins. The specimens were loaded in bending to induce representative strains in the tubing. All specimens failed. The second tests consisted of only an environmental soak to determine the amount of mass uptake as well as the reduction in strength. The strength reduction results will be presented at a later time. Testing was performed on S-2 glass, carbon and Kevlar 49 as well as three different resins.

  2. Applications of predictive environmental strain models.

    PubMed

    Reardon, M J; Gonzalez, R R; Pandolf, K B

    1997-02-01

    Researchers at the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine have developed and validated numerical models capable of predicting the extent of physiologic strain and adverse terrain and weather-related medical consequences of military operations in harsh environments. A descriptive historical account is provided that details how physiologic models for hot and cold weather exposure have been integrated into portable field advisory devices, computer-based meteorologic planning software, and combat-oriented simulation systems. It is important that medical officers be aware of the existence of these types of decision support tools so that they can assure that outputs are interpreted in a balanced and medically realistic manner. Additionally, these modeling applications may facilitate timely preventive medicine planning and efficient dissemination of appropriate measures to prevent weather- and altitude-related illnesses and performance decrements. Such environmental response modeling applications may therefore be utilized to support deployment preventive medicine planning by field medical officers.

  3. Predicting the Environmental Impact of Active Sonar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duncan, Alec J.; McCauley, Robert D.; Maggi, Amos L.

    2004-11-01

    The effect of active sonar on marine animals, particularly mammals, has become a hot topic in recent times. The Australian Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 obligates Defence to avoid significant environmental impacts from Navy activities including those which produce underwater sound such as active sonar. It is in the interests of all parties that these effects be modeled accurately to facilitate both the quantitative evaluation of the consequences of any proposed sonar trials, and the identification of suitable mitigation procedures. This paper discusses the received signal parameters that are of importance when predicting the effect of sonar systems on marine animals and techniques for modeling both the expected values of these parameters and their statistical fluctuations.

  4. Robotic automation of the environmental chemical laboratory

    SciTech Connect

    Hollen, R.M.; Erkkila, T.H.

    1994-04-01

    To date, automation of the environmental chemical laboratory has been a slow and tedious affair. In many, of our domestic analytical laboratories, automation consists of no more than analytical instrumentation coupled to an autosampling device. When we look into the future environmental needs of our nation, and indeed the world, it is apparent that we will not be able to keep up with the drastically increasing sample load without automated analyses. Stricter regulatory requirements on the horizon will potentially mandate staggering changes in sampling and characterization requirements. The Contaminant Analysis Automation (CAA) Program was initiated in 1990 by the US government`s Department of Energy (DOE) to address these issues. By application of a new robotics paradigm, based on an integrated production chemistry foundation applied to analytical chemistry, the CAA will use standardized modular instruments called Standard Laboratory Modules (SLM) to provide flexible and standardized automation systems. By promoting the commercialization of this technology, CAA will provide the integrated robotics systems necessary to meet the coming remediation demands. This multilaboratory program is within the Robotics Technology Development Program (RTDP) of the Office of Technology Development (OTD).

  5. Analytic considerations for measuring environmental chemicals in breast milk.

    PubMed Central

    Needham, Larry L; Wang, Richard Y

    2002-01-01

    The presence of environmental chemicals in human breast milk is of general concern because of the potential health consequence of these chemicals to the breast-fed infant and the mother. In addition to the mother's exposure, several features determine the presence of environmental chemicals in breast milk and their ability to be determined analytically. These include maternal factors and properties of the environmental chemical--both physical and chemical--such as its lipid solubility, degree of ionization, and molecular weight. Environmental chemicals with high lipid solubility are likely to be found in breast milk; they include polyhalogenated compounds such as polychlorinated biphenyls, polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, polychlorinated dibenzofurans, organochlorine insecticides, and polybrominated diphenylethers. These fat-soluble chemicals are incorporated into the milk as it is synthesized, and they must be measured in accordance with the fat content of the milk to allow for meaningful comparisons within an individual and among populations. Although the analytic approach selected to measure the environmental chemical is predominantly determined by the characteristics of the chemical, the concentration of the chemical in the milk sample and the existence of structurally similar chemicals (e.g., congeners) must be considered as well. In general, the analytic approach for measuring environmental chemicals in breast milk is similar to the approach for measuring the same chemicals in other matrices, except special considerations must be given for the relatively high fat content of milk. The continued efforts of environmental scientists to measure environmental chemicals in breast milk is important for defining the true contribution of these chemicals to public health, especially to the health of the newborn. Work is needed for identifying and quantifying additional environmental chemicals in breast milk from the general population and for developing analytic

  6. Critical conceptualism in environmental modeling and prediction.

    PubMed

    Christakos, G

    2003-10-15

    Many important problems in environmental science and engineering are of a conceptual nature. Research and development, however, often becomes so preoccupied with technical issues, which are themselves fascinating, that it neglects essential methodological elements of conceptual reasoning and theoretical inquiry. This work suggests that valuable insight into environmental modeling can be gained by means of critical conceptualism which focuses on the software of human reason and, in practical terms, leads to a powerful methodological framework of space-time modeling and prediction. A knowledge synthesis system develops the rational means for the epistemic integration of various physical knowledge bases relevant to the natural system of interest in order to obtain a realistic representation of the system, provide a rigorous assessment of the uncertainty sources, generate meaningful predictions of environmental processes in space-time, and produce science-based decisions. No restriction is imposed on the shape of the distribution model or the form of the predictor (non-Gaussian distributions, multiple-point statistics, and nonlinear models are automatically incorporated). The scientific reasoning structure underlying knowledge synthesis involves teleologic criteria and stochastic logic principles which have important advantages over the reasoning method of conventional space-time techniques. Insight is gained in terms of real world applications, including the following: the study of global ozone patterns in the atmosphere using data sets generated by instruments on board the Nimbus 7 satellite and secondary information in terms of total ozone-tropopause pressure models; the mapping of arsenic concentrations in the Bangladesh drinking water by assimilating hard and soft data from an extensive network of monitoring wells; and the dynamic imaging of probability distributions of pollutants across the Kalamazoo river.

  7. DESIGNING ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY CHEMICAL PROCESSES WITH FUGITIVE AND OPEN EMISSIONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Designing a chemical process normally includes aspects of economic and environmental disciplines. In this work we describe methods to quickly and easily evaluate the economics and potential environmental impacts of a process, with the hydrodealkylation of toluene as an example. ...

  8. Integrated Proteomic Approaches for Understanding Toxicity of Environmental Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    To apply quantitative proteomic analysis to the evaluation of toxicity of environmental chemicals, we have developed an integrated proteomic technology platform. This platform has been applied to the analysis of the toxic effects and pathways of many important environmental chemi...

  9. A Framework for the Environmental Professional in the Chemical Industry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Priesing, Charles P.

    1982-01-01

    Addresses four areas of environmental concern in the chemical industry: (1) needs and responsibilities of environmental protection; (2) organization and distribution of environmental affairs within the corporate structure; (3) functions and operations associated with industrial environmental management; and (4) origins and tasks of the…

  10. Evaluating the Toxicity Pathways Using High-Throughput Environmental Chemical Data

    EPA Science Inventory

    The application of HTS methods to the characterization of human phenotypic response to environmental chemicals is a largely unexplored area of pharmacogenomics. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), through its ToxCast program, is developing predictive toxicity approach...

  11. Accurate prediction of the response of freshwater fish to a mixture of estrogenic chemicals.

    PubMed

    Brian, Jayne V; Harris, Catherine A; Scholze, Martin; Backhaus, Thomas; Booy, Petra; Lamoree, Marja; Pojana, Giulio; Jonkers, Niels; Runnalls, Tamsin; Bonfà, Angela; Marcomini, Antonio; Sumpter, John P

    2005-06-01

    Existing environmental risk assessment procedures are limited in their ability to evaluate the combined effects of chemical mixtures. We investigated the implications of this by analyzing the combined effects of a multicomponent mixture of five estrogenic chemicals using vitellogenin induction in male fathead minnows as an end point. The mixture consisted of estradiol, ethynylestradiol, nonylphenol, octylphenol, and bisphenol A. We determined concentration-response curves for each of the chemicals individually. The chemicals were then combined at equipotent concentrations and the mixture tested using fixed-ratio design. The effects of the mixture were compared with those predicted by the model of concentration addition using biomathematical methods, which revealed that there was no deviation between the observed and predicted effects of the mixture. These findings demonstrate that estrogenic chemicals have the capacity to act together in an additive manner and that their combined effects can be accurately predicted by concentration addition. We also explored the potential for mixture effects at low concentrations by exposing the fish to each chemical at one-fifth of its median effective concentration (EC50). Individually, the chemicals did not induce a significant response, although their combined effects were consistent with the predictions of concentration addition. This demonstrates the potential for estrogenic chemicals to act additively at environmentally relevant concentrations. These findings highlight the potential for existing environmental risk assessment procedures to underestimate the hazard posed by mixtures of chemicals that act via a similar mode of action, thereby leading to erroneous conclusions of absence of risk.

  12. Accurate Prediction of the Response of Freshwater Fish to a Mixture of Estrogenic Chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Brian, Jayne V.; Harris, Catherine A.; Scholze, Martin; Backhaus, Thomas; Booy, Petra; Lamoree, Marja; Pojana, Giulio; Jonkers, Niels; Runnalls, Tamsin; Bonfà, Angela; Marcomini, Antonio; Sumpter, John P.

    2005-01-01

    Existing environmental risk assessment procedures are limited in their ability to evaluate the combined effects of chemical mixtures. We investigated the implications of this by analyzing the combined effects of a multicomponent mixture of five estrogenic chemicals using vitellogenin induction in male fathead minnows as an end point. The mixture consisted of estradiol, ethynylestradiol, nonylphenol, octylphenol, and bisphenol A. We determined concentration–response curves for each of the chemicals individually. The chemicals were then combined at equipotent concentrations and the mixture tested using fixed-ratio design. The effects of the mixture were compared with those predicted by the model of concentration addition using biomathematical methods, which revealed that there was no deviation between the observed and predicted effects of the mixture. These findings demonstrate that estrogenic chemicals have the capacity to act together in an additive manner and that their combined effects can be accurately predicted by concentration addition. We also explored the potential for mixture effects at low concentrations by exposing the fish to each chemical at one-fifth of its median effective concentration (EC50). Individually, the chemicals did not induce a significant response, although their combined effects were consistent with the predictions of concentration addition. This demonstrates the potential for estrogenic chemicals to act additively at environmentally relevant concentrations. These findings highlight the potential for existing environmental risk assessment procedures to underestimate the hazard posed by mixtures of chemicals that act via a similar mode of action, thereby leading to erroneous conclusions of absence of risk. PMID:15929895

  13. Some environmental considerations relating to the interaction of the solid rocket motor exhaust with the atmosphere: Predicted chemical composition of exhaust species and predicted conditions for the formation of HCl aerosol

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rhein, R. A.

    1973-01-01

    The exhaust products of a solid rocket motor using as propellant 14% binder, 16% aluminum, and 70% (wt) ammonium perchlorate consist of hydrogen chloride, water, alumina, and other compounds. The equilibrium and some frozen compositions of the chemical species upon interaction with the atmosphere were computed. The conditions under which hydrogen chloride interacts with the water vapor in humid air to form an aerosol containing hydrochloric acid were computed for various weight ratios of air/exhaust products. These computations were also performed for the case of a combined SRM and hydrogen-oxygen rocket engine. Regimes of temperature and relative humidity where this aerosol is expected were identified. Within these regimes, the concentration of HCL in the aerosol and weight fraction of aerosol to gas phase were plotted. Hydrochloric acid aerosol formation was found to be particularly likely in cool humid weather.

  14. Toward a predictive theory for environmental enrichment.

    PubMed

    Watters, Jason V

    2009-11-01

    There have been many applications of and successes with environmental enrichment for captive animals. The theoretical spine upon which much enrichment work hangs largely describes why enrichment should work. Yet, there remains no clear understanding of how enrichment should be applied to achieve the most beneficial results. This lack of understanding may stem in part from the assumptions that underlie the application of enrichment by practitioners. These assumptions are derived from an understanding that giving animals choice and control in their environment stimulates their motivation to perform behaviors that may indicate a heightened state of well-being. Learning theory provides a means to question the manner in which these constructs are routinely applied, and converting learning theory's findings to optimality predictions suggests a particularly vexing paradox-that motivation to perform appears to be maintained best when acquiring a payoff for expressing the behavior is uncertain. This effect occurs even when the actual value of the payoff is the same for all schedules of certainty of payoff acquisition. The paradox can be resolved by invoking rewards of an alternative type, such as cognitive rewards, or through an understanding of how the average payoff changes with changes in the probability of reward. This model, with measures of the average change of the payoff, suggests testable scenarios by which practitioners can measure the quality of environmental uncertainty in enrichment programs.

  15. PREDICTION OF PHYSICOCHEMICAL PROCESSES FOR ENVIRONMENTAL MODELING BY COMPUTER

    EPA Science Inventory

    The major differences among behavioral profiles of molecules in the environment are attributable to their physicochemical properties. For most chemicals, only fragmentary knowledge exists about those properties that determine each compound's environmental fate. A chemical-by-ch...

  16. EFFECTS OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS ON FETAL TESTES TESTOSTERONE PRODUCTION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Effects of Environmental Chemicals on Fetal Testes Testosterone Production

    Lambright, CS , Wilson, VS , Furr, J, Wolf, CJ, Noriega, N, Gray, LE, Jr.
    US EPA, ORD/NHEERL/RTD, RTP, NC

    Exposure of pregnant rodents to certain environmental chemicals during criti...

  17. Environmental chemical mutagens and genetic risks: Lessons from radiation genetics

    SciTech Connect

    Sankaranarayanan, K.

    1996-12-31

    The last three decades have witnessed substantial progress in the development and use of a variety of in vitro and in vivo assay systems for the testing of environmental chemicals which may pose a mutagenic hazard to humans. This is also true of basic studies in chemical mutagenesis on mechanisms, DNA repair, molecular dosimetry, structure-activity relationships, etc. However, the field of quantitative evaluation of genetic risks of environmental chemicals to humans is still in it infancy. This commentary addresses the question of how our experience in estimating genetic risks of exposure to ionizing radiation can be helpful in similar endeavors with environmental chemical mutagens. 24 refs., 3 tabs.

  18. Environmental analysis of the chemical release module. [space shuttle payload

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heppner, J. P.; Dubin, M.

    1980-01-01

    The environmental analysis of the Chemical Release Module (a free flying spacecraft deployed from the space shuttle to perform chemical release experiments) is reviewed. Considerations of possible effects of the injectants on human health, ionosphere, weather, ground based optical astronomical observations, and satellite operations are included. It is concluded that no deleterious environmental effects of widespread or long lasting nature are anticipated from chemical releases in the upper atmosphere of the type indicated for the program.

  19. EVALUATING AND DESIGNING CHEMICAL PROCESSES FOR ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Chemicals and chemical processes are at the heart of most environmental problems. This isn't surprising since chemicals make up all of the products we use in our lives. The common use of cjhemicals makes them of high interest for systems analysis, particularly because of environ...

  20. Chemical Fingerprinting of Materials Developed Due to Environmental Issues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Doris A.; McCool, A. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    Instrumental chemical analysis methods are developed and used to chemically fingerprint new and modified External Tank materials made necessary by changing environmental requirements. Chemical fingerprinting can detect and diagnose variations in material composition. To chemically characterize each material, fingerprint methods are selected from an extensive toolbox based on the material's chemistry and the ability of the specific methods to detect the material's critical ingredients. Fingerprint methods have been developed for a variety of materials including Thermal Protection System foams, adhesives, primers, and composites.

  1. Perceived Vulnerability to Disease Predicts Environmental Attitudes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prokop, Pavol; Kubiatko, Milan

    2014-01-01

    Investigating predictors of environmental attitudes may bring valuable benefits in terms of improving public awareness about biodiversity degradation and increased pro-environmental behaviour. Here we used an evolutionary approach to study environmental attitudes based on disease-threat model. We hypothesized that people vulnerable to diseases may…

  2. Predicting environmental fate parameters with infrared spectroscopy.

    EPA Science Inventory

    One of the principal uncertainties associated with risk assessments of organic chemicals in the environment is the lack of chemical-specific values that quantify the many processes determining the chemical's transport and transformation. Because it is not feasible to measure the ...

  3. Simulation of Chronic Liver Injury Due to Environmental Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    US EPA Virtual Liver (v-Liver) is a cellular systems model of hepatic tissues to predict the effects of chronic exposure to chemicals. Tens of thousands of chemicals are currently in commerce and hundreds more are introduced every year. Few of these chemicals have been adequate...

  4. Computational Toxicology: Application in Environmental Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    This chapter provides an overview of computational models that describe various aspects of the source-to-health effect continuum. Fate and transport models describe the release, transportation, and transformation of chemicals from sources of emission throughout the general envir...

  5. In silico environmental chemical science: properties and processes from statistical and computational modelling.

    PubMed

    Tratnyek, Paul G; Bylaska, Eric J; Weber, Eric J

    2017-03-22

    Quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARs) have long been used in the environmental sciences. More recently, molecular modeling and chemoinformatic methods have become widespread. These methods have the potential to expand and accelerate advances in environmental chemistry because they complement observational and experimental data with "in silico" results and analysis. The opportunities and challenges that arise at the intersection between statistical and theoretical in silico methods are most apparent in the context of properties that determine the environmental fate and effects of chemical contaminants (degradation rate constants, partition coefficients, toxicities, etc.). The main example of this is the calibration of QSARs using descriptor variable data calculated from molecular modeling, which can make QSARs more useful for predicting property data that are unavailable, but also can make them more powerful tools for diagnosis of fate determining pathways and mechanisms. Emerging opportunities for "in silico environmental chemical science" are to move beyond the calculation of specific chemical properties using statistical models and toward more fully in silico models, prediction of transformation pathways and products, incorporation of environmental factors into model predictions, integration of databases and predictive models into more comprehensive and efficient tools for exposure assessment, and extending the applicability of all the above from chemicals to biologicals and materials.

  6. Hierarchical dose-response modeling for high-throughput toxicity screening of environmental chemicals.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Ander; Reif, David M; Reich, Brian J

    2014-03-01

    High-throughput screening (HTS) of environmental chemicals is used to identify chemicals with high potential for adverse human health and environmental effects from among the thousands of untested chemicals. Predicting physiologically relevant activity with HTS data requires estimating the response of a large number of chemicals across a battery of screening assays based on sparse dose-response data for each chemical-assay combination. Many standard dose-response methods are inadequate because they treat each curve separately and under-perform when there are as few as 6-10 observations per curve. We propose a semiparametric Bayesian model that borrows strength across chemicals and assays. Our method directly parametrizes the efficacy and potency of the chemicals as well as the probability of response. We use the ToxCast data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as motivation. We demonstrate that our hierarchical method provides more accurate estimates of the probability of response, efficacy, and potency than separate curve estimation in a simulation study. We use our semiparametric method to compare the efficacy of chemicals in the ToxCast data to well-characterized reference chemicals on estrogen receptor α (ERα) and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) assays, then estimate the probability that other chemicals are active at lower concentrations than the reference chemicals.

  7. SIMULATION MODELS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL MULTIMEDIA ANALYSIS OF TOXIC CHEMICALS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Multimedia understanding of pollutant behavior in the environment is of particular concern for chemicals that are toxic and are subject to accumulation in the environmental media (air, soil, water, vegetation) where biota and human exposure is significant. Multimedia simulation ...

  8. Proteomic analyses of the environmental toxicity of carcinogenic chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    Protein expression and posttranslational modifications consistently change in response to the exposure to environmental chemicals. Recent technological advances in proteomics provide new tools for more efficient characterization of protein expression and posttranslational modific...

  9. DESIGNING ENVIRONMENTAL, ECONOMIC AND ENERGY EFFICIENT CHEMICAL PROCESSES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The design and improvement of chemical processes can be very challenging. The earlier energy conservation, process economics and environmental aspects are incorporated into the process development, the easier and less expensive it is to alter the process design. Process emissio...

  10. Chemical Aging of Environmentally Friendly Cleaners

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Biegert, L. L.; Evans, K. B.; Olsen, B. D.; Weber, B. L.

    2001-01-01

    Use of cleaners in the manufacturing area demands bottles that will hold a sufficient amount of material and allow for easy and controlled dispensing by the operator without contamination or material leaching from the bottle. The manufacturing storage conditions are also a factor that may affect cleaner chemical integrity and its potential to leave a residue on the part. A variety of squeeze bottles stored in mild (72 F, 10% R.H., dark) and harsh (105 F, 50% R.H., fluorescent lighting) conditions were evaluated to determine the effect of environment and bottle exposure on ozone depleting chemicals (ODC) cleaners chemical composition. Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE) bottles were found to be quite permeable to all the cleaners evaluated in this study indicating this bottle type should not be used in the manufacturing area. Fluorinated Polyethylene (FLPE) bottles showed little cleaner loss and change in cleaner chemical composition over time suggesting these bottles would be acceptable for use. Chemical analysis indicates limonene containing cleaners show increased non-volatile residue (NVR) content with storage under harsh conditions. Some cleaners use BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) as stabilizer and to protect against limonene oxidation. Under harsh conditions, BHT was quickly depleted resulting in higher NVR levels.

  11. The Molecular Recognition Paradigm of Environmental Chemicals with Biomacromolecules.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wenjing; Pan, Liumeng; Wang, Haifei; Lv, Xuan; Ding, Keke

    2017-01-01

    The interactions of ligands with biomacromolecules play a fundamental role in almost all bioprocesses occuring in living organisms. The binding of ligands can cause the conformational changes of biomacromolecules, possibly affecting their physiological functions. The interactions of ligands with biomacromolecules are thus becoming a research hotspot. However, till now, there still lacks a systematic compilation of review with the focus on the interactions between environmental chemicals and biomacromolecules. In this review, we focus on the molecular recognition paradigm of environmental chemicals with biomacromolecules and chemical basis for driving the complex formation. The state-of-the-art review on in vitro and in silico studies on interaction of organic chemicals with transport proteins, nuclear receptors and CYP450 enzymes was provided, and the enantioselective interactions of chiral environmental chemicals was also mentioned.

  12. Chemical Aging of Environmentally Friendly Cleaners

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Evans, K.; Biegert, L.; Olsen, B.; Weber, B.; McCool, Alex (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Use of cleaners in the manufacturing area demands bottles that will hold a sufficient amount of material and allow for easy and controlled dispensing by the operator without contamination or material leaching from the bottle. The manufacturing storage conditions are also a factor that may affect cleaner chemical integrity and its potential to leave a residue on the part. A variety of squeeze bottles stored in mild (72 F, 10 % R.H., dark) and harsh (105 F, 50 % R.H., fluorescent lighting) conditions were evaluated to determine the effect of environment and bottle exposure on the chemical composition of TCA (1,1,1 trichloroethane) replacement solvents. Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE) bottles were found to be quite permeable to all the cleaners evaluated in this study indicating this bottle type should not be used in the manufacturing area. Fluorinated Polyethylene (FLPE) bottles showed little cleaner loss and change in cleaner chemical composition over time suggesting these bottles would be acceptable for use. Chemical analysis indicates limonene-containing cleaners show increased non-volatile residue (NVR) content with storage under harsh conditions. Some cleaners use BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) as stabilizer and to protect against limonene oxidation. Under harsh conditions, BHT was quickly depleted resulting in higher NVR levels.

  13. CHEMICAL INDUCTION MIXER VERIFICATION - ENVIRONMENTAL TECHNOLOGY VERIFICATION PROGRAM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Wet-Weather Flow Technologies Pilot of the Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) Program, which is supported by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and facilitated by NSF International, has recently evaluated the performance of chemical induction mixers used for di...

  14. ANIMALS AS SENTINELS OF HUMAN HEALTH HAZARDS OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS

    EPA Science Inventory

    A workshop titled "Using Sentinel Species Data to Address the Potential Human Health Effects of Chemicals in the Environmnet," sponsored by the U.S. Army Center for Environmental Health Research, the National Center for Environmental Assessment of the EPA, and the Agency for Toxi...

  15. RAPID SCREENING OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS FOR ESTROGEN RECEPTOR BINDING CAPACITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Over the last few years, an increased awareness of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and their potential to affect wildlife and humans has produced a demand for practical screening methods to identify endocrine activity in a wide range of environmental and industrial chemical...

  16. A Chemical Properties Simulator to Support Integrated Environmental Modeling

    EPA Science Inventory

    Users of Integrated Environmental Modeling (IEM) systems are responsible for defining individual chemicals and their properties, a process that is time-consuming at best and overwhelming at worst, especially for new chemicals with new structures. A software tool is needed to allo...

  17. A Chemical Properties Simulator to Support Integrated Environmental Modeling (proceeding)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Users of Integrated Environmental Modeling (IEM) systems are responsible for defining individual chemicals and their properties, a process that is time-consuming at best and overwhelming at worst, especially for new chemicals with new structures. A software tool is needed to allo...

  18. How can Databases assist with the Prediction of Chemical Compounds?

    PubMed Central

    Schön, J Christian

    2014-01-01

    An overview is given on the ways databases can be employed to aid in the prediction of chemical compounds, in particular inorganic crystalline compounds. Methods currently employed and possible future approaches are discussed. PMID:26213422

  19. PREDICTING EVAPORATION RATES AND TIMES FOR SPILLS OF CHEMICAL MIXTURES

    EPA Science Inventory


    Spreadsheet and short-cut methods have been developed for predicting evaporation rates and evaporation times for spills (and constrained baths) of chemical mixtures. Steady-state and time-varying predictions of evaporation rates can be made for six-component mixtures, includ...

  20. Synergistic activation of estrogen receptor with combinations of environmental chemicals

    SciTech Connect

    Arnold, S.F.; Klotz, D.M.; Collins, B.M.

    1996-06-07

    Certain chemicals in the environment are estrogenic. The low potencies of the compounds, when studied singly, suggest that they may have little effect on biological systems. The estrogenic potencies of combinations of such chemicals were screened in a simple yeast estrogen potencies of combination of such chemicals were screened in a simple yeast estrogen systems (YES) containing human estrogen receptor (hER). Combinations of two weak environmental estrogens, such as dieldrin, endosulfan, or toxaphene, were 100 times as potent in hER-mediated transactivation as any chemical alone. Hydroxylated polychlorinated biphenyls shown previously to synergistically alter sexual development in turtles also synergized in the YES. The synergistic interaction of chemical mixtures with the estrogen receptor may have profound environmental implications. These results may represent a previously uncharacterized level of regulation of estrogen-associated responses. 32 refs., 3 figs., 3 tabs.

  1. Multicomponent criteria for predicting carcinogenicity: dataset of 30 NTP chemicals.

    PubMed Central

    Huff, J; Weisburger, E; Fung, V A

    1996-01-01

    This article is in response to the challenge issued to the scientific community by the National Toxicology Program to predict the carcinogenicity potential of 30 chemicals previously selected for long-term carcinogenicity testing. Utilizing the available toxicologic, genetic, and structural information on 30 chemicals previously selected for long-term carcinogenicity testing, we predict that 16 chemicals (53%) would induce some indication of carcinogenic activity in rodents; we further predict that 10 chemicals (33%) would be associated with weak or equivocal carcinogenic responses, and another 4 (13%) would give no indication of carcinogenicity. Our level of certainty is indicated for many of these predictions. Nonetheless, we believe that most instances of guessing whether a chemical would eventually induce cancer in experimental animals and hence represent a carcinogenic hazard to humans are fraught with considerable uncertainty: uncertainty that can only be relieved by long-term testing for carcinogenicity in animals or by conducting an epidemiologic investigation of exposed individuals or groups. We further believe that the day may come when our predictive acumen will be upgraded to such an extent that we might eventually obviate cancer testing. Until then, and in the best interests of public health, however, we urge long term testing of chemicals in animals be continued, at increased pace. PMID:8933061

  2. Prediction of Harmful Human Health Effects of Chemicals from Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cronin, Mark T. D.

    There is a great need to assess the harmful effects of chemicals to which man is exposed. Various in silico techniques including chemical grouping and category formation, as well as the use of (Q)SARs can be applied to predict the toxicity of chemicals for a number of toxicological effects. This chapter provides an overview of the state of the art of the prediction of the harmful effects of chemicals to human health. A variety of existing data can be used to obtain information; many such data are formalized into freely available and commercial databases. (Q)SARs can be developed (as illustrated with reference to skin sensitization) for local and global data sets. In addition, chemical grouping techniques can be applied on "similar" chemicals to allow for read-across predictions. Many "expert systems" are now available that incorporate these approaches. With these in silico approaches available, the techniques to apply them successfully have become essential. Integration of different in silico approaches with each other, as well as with other alternative approaches, e.g., in vitro and -omics through the development of integrated testing strategies, will assist in the more efficient prediction of the harmful health effects of chemicals

  3. Environmental Impact on Vascular Development Predicted by High Throughput Screening

    EPA Science Inventory

    Understanding health risks to embryonic development from exposure to environmental chemicals is a significant challenge given the diverse chemical landscape and paucity of data for most of these compounds. High throughput screening (HTS) in EPA’s ToxCastTM project provides vast d...

  4. Environmental and safety obligations of the Chemical Weapons Convention

    SciTech Connect

    Tanzman, E.A.

    1994-04-07

    Among its many unique and precedent-setting provisions, the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) includes important requirements for States Parties to protect the public safety and the environment in the course of carrying out the treaty. These obligations will apply to the destruction of chemical weapons, of former chemical weapons production facilities, and to other activities under the Convention such as the verification scheme. This morning, I will briefly discuss the Convention`s safety and environmental obligations, concentrating on their effects in this country as the United States chemical weapons stockpile is destroyed.

  5. Environmental neurotoxicity of chemicals and radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Verity, M.A. )

    1993-06-01

    Epidemiologic and societal concerns continue to stimulate studies in the field of environmental neurotoxicology. Although the role of heavy metals, aluminum, and iron are unclear in the etiology of human neurodegenerative disorders, these toxins have provided fertile ground for in vivo and in vitro experimental studies to elucidate their role in neurotoxic injury. Experimental models of clinical syndromes are discussed with special relevance to developmental neurotoxicology. Cycloleucine, tellurium, and 1,3-dinitrobenzene provide models of subacute combined degeneration, primary peripheral nerve demyelination, and thiamine deficiency-like lesions, respectively. Increasing attention is being given to irradiation neurotoxicity, especially in the developing or young central nervous system. A fuller understanding of the pathogenesis of low-dose irradiation injury allows for a clearer understanding of its neurobiology and also provides a more rational approach to understanding an interventional therapy associated with brain irradiation for childhood neoplasia. 43 refs.

  6. Improving confidence in (Q)SAR predictions under Canada's Chemicals Management Plan - a chemical space approach.

    PubMed

    Kulkarni, S A; Benfenati, E; Barton-Maclaren, T S

    2016-10-20

    One of the key challenges of Canada's Chemicals Management Plan (CMP) is assessing chemicals with limited/no empirical hazard data for their risk to human health. In some instances, these chemicals have not been tested broadly for their toxicological potency; as such, limited information exists on their potential to induce human health effects following exposure. Although (quantitative) structure activity relationship ((Q)SAR) models are able to generate predictions to address data gaps for certain toxicological endpoints, the confidence in predictions also needs to be addressed. One way to address this issue is to apply a chemical space approach. This approach uses international toxicological databases, for example, those available in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) QSAR Toolbox. The approach,assesses a model's ability to predict the potential hazards of chemicals that have limited hazard data that require assessment under the CMP when compared to a larger, data-rich chemical space that is structurally similar to chemicals of interest. This evaluation of a model's predictive ability makes (Q)SAR analysis more transparent and increases confidence in the application of these predictions in a risk-assessment context. Using this approach, predictions for such chemicals obtained from four (Q)SAR models were successfully classified into high, medium and low confidence levels to better inform their use in decision-making.

  7. Environmental fate and transport of chemical signatures from buried landmines -- Screening model formulation and initial simulations

    SciTech Connect

    Phelan, J.M.; Webb, S.W.

    1997-06-01

    The fate and transport of chemical signature molecules that emanate from buried landmines is strongly influenced by physical chemical properties and by environmental conditions of the specific chemical compounds. Published data have been evaluated as the input parameters that are used in the simulation of the fate and transport processes. A one-dimensional model developed for screening agricultural pesticides was modified and used to simulate the appearance of a surface flux above a buried landmine, estimate the subsurface total concentration, and show the phase specific concentrations at the ground surface. The physical chemical properties of TNT cause a majority of the mass released to the soil system to be bound to the solid phase soil particles. The majority of the transport occurs in the liquid phase with diffusion and evaporation driven advection of soil water as the primary mechanisms for the flux to the ground surface. The simulations provided herein should only be used for initial conceptual designs of chemical pre-concentration subsystems or complete detection systems. The physical processes modeled required necessary simplifying assumptions to allow for analytical solutions. Emerging numerical simulation tools will soon be available that should provide more realistic estimates that can be used to predict the success of landmine chemical detection surveys based on knowledge of the chemical and soil properties, and environmental conditions where the mines are buried. Additional measurements of the chemical properties in soils are also needed before a fully predictive approach can be confidently applied.

  8. TSCA Work Plan Chemical Technical Supplement – Physicochemical Properties and Environmental Fate of the Brominated Phthalates Cluster (BPC) Chemicals

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    TSCA Work Plan Chemical Technical Supplement – Physicochemical Properties and Environmental Fate of the Brominated Phthalates Cluster (BPC) Chemicals -- Brominated Phthalates Cluster Flame Retardants.

  9. Chemical Genomics Profiling of Environmental Chemical Modulation of Human Nuclear Receptors

    EPA Science Inventory

    The large and increasing number of chemicals released into the environment demand more efficient and cost effective approaches for assessing environmental chemical toxicity. The U.S. Tox21 program has responded to this challenge by proposing alternative strategies for toxicity te...

  10. Developmental Exposure to Environmental Chemicals and Metabolic Changes in Children.

    PubMed

    Russ, Karin; Howard, Sarah

    2016-08-01

    The incidence of childhood obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other forms of metabolic disease have been rising over the past several decades. Although diet and physical activity play important roles in these trends, other environmental factors also may contribute to this significant public health issue. In this article, we discuss the possibility that widespread exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) may contribute to the development of metabolic diseases in children. We summarize the epidemiological evidence on exposure to environmental chemicals during early development and metabolic outcomes in infants and children. Prenatal exposure to EDCs, particularly the persistent organic pollutant DDT and its metabolite DDE, may influence growth patterns during infancy and childhood. The altered growth patterns associated with EDCs vary according to exposure level, sex, exposure timing, pubertal status, and age at which growth is measured. Early exposure to air pollutants also is linked to impaired metabolism in infants and children. As a result of these and other studies, professional health provider societies have called for a reduction in environmental chemical exposures. We summarize the resources available to health care providers to counsel patients on how to reduce chemical exposures. We conclude with a discussion of environmental policies that address chemical exposures and ultimately aim to improve public health.

  11. Chemicals and environmentally caused diseases in developing countries

    SciTech Connect

    Jamall, I.S.; Davis, B. )

    1991-06-01

    This chapter discusses international aspects of diseases resulting from exposure to chemical pollutants in the environment, with an emphasis on developing countries. These countries share many of the same problems of air, water, and pesticide pollution that face the more industrialized countries. In developing countries, however, the problems are compounded by a number of unique situations, viz., economic priorities, high burden of infectious diseases, impoverishment, and absence of a regulatory framework for the disposal of toxic chemicals. This discussion emphasizes the importance of interactions among toxicants, malnutrition, and infectious diseases for both urban and rural populations insofar as these interactions contribute to disease. Toxicants not only produce disease directly but also exacerbate diseases with other causes. Specific examples from developing countries demonstrate how human health effects from exposures to environmental chemicals can be assessed. While they do not strictly fall under the rubric of developing countries, the public health consequences of inadequate control of environmental pollution in the East European countries should demonstrate the magnitude of the problem, except that in developing countries the public health consequence of environmental chemicals will be aggravated by the widespread malnutrition and high prevalence of infectious diseases. Much needs to be done before we can adequately quantify the contribution of environmental chemicals to morbidity and mortality in developing countries with the level of sophistication now evident in the charting of infectious diseases in these countries. 52 references.

  12. Deciphering Diseases and Biological Targets for Environmental Chemicals using Toxicogenomics Networks

    PubMed Central

    Audouze, Karine; Juncker, Agnieszka Sierakowska; Roque, Francisco J. S. S. A.; Krysiak-Baltyn, Konrad; Weinhold, Nils; Taboureau, Olivier; Jensen, Thomas Skøt; Brunak, Søren

    2010-01-01

    Exposure to environmental chemicals and drugs may have a negative effect on human health. A better understanding of the molecular mechanism of such compounds is needed to determine the risk. We present a high confidence human protein-protein association network built upon the integration of chemical toxicology and systems biology. This computational systems chemical biology model reveals uncharacterized connections between compounds and diseases, thus predicting which compounds may be risk factors for human health. Additionally, the network can be used to identify unexpected potential associations between chemicals and proteins. Examples are shown for chemicals associated with breast cancer, lung cancer and necrosis, and potential protein targets for di-ethylhexyl-phthalate, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin, pirinixic acid and permethrine. The chemical-protein associations are supported through recent published studies, which illustrate the power of our approach that integrates toxicogenomics data with other data types. PMID:20502671

  13. Using Chemical-Induced Gene Expression in Cultured Human Cells to Predict Chemical Toxicity.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ruifeng; Yu, Xueping; Wallqvist, Anders

    2016-11-21

    Chemical toxicity is conventionally evaluated in animal models. However, animal models are resource intensive; moreover, they face ethical and scientific challenges because the outcomes obtained by animal testing may not correlate with human responses. To develop an alternative method for assessing chemical toxicity, we investigated the feasibility of using chemical-induced genome-wide expression changes in cultured human cells to predict the potential of a chemical to cause specific organ injuries in humans. We first created signatures of chemical-induced gene expression in a vertebral-cancer of the prostate cell line for ∼15,000 chemicals tested in the US National Institutes of Health Library of Integrated Network-Based Cellular Signatures program. We then used the signatures to create naı̈ve Bayesian prediction models for chemical-induced human liver cholestasis, interstitial nephritis, and long QT syndrome. Detailed cross-validation analyses indicated that the models were robust with respect to false positives and false negatives in the samples we used to train the models and could predict the likelihood that chemicals would cause specific organ injuries. In addition, we performed a literature search for drugs and dietary supplements, not formally categorized as causing organ injuries in humans but predicted by our models to be most likely to do so. We found a high percentage of these compounds associated with case reports of relevant organ injuries, lending support to the idea that in vitro cell-based experiments can be used to predict the toxic potential of chemicals. We believe that this approach, combined with a robust technique to model human exposure to chemicals, may serve as a promising alternative to animal-based chemical toxicity assessment.

  14. Toxic chemicals in environment and models for predicting their degradation and fate

    SciTech Connect

    Sabljic, A.

    1996-12-31

    During the last 50 years many man-made chemicals have reached every corner of the global environment despite the limitations on their use in some regions and the fact that many of them were not deliberately released into the environment. Both the mobility and persistence of commercial chemicals are the key factors for evaluating their ultimate fate and possible adverse effects on mankind and environment. The notorious global adverse effects are climate changes such as global warming, acid rain, forest decline, as well as permanent degradation of the environment and quality of life. Global and regional models have been developed for predicting transport of chemicals in atmosphere, hydrosphere, and biosphere and hence their ultimate fate or their environmental sinks. Performance of these models will be demonstrated on several classes of persistent organic chemicals. However, in order to work reliably, global and regional models for environmental fate of chemicals require, as input parameters, their physico-chemical properties and reactivity data. Unfortunately, these data are unavailable for the majority of commercial chemicals and necessary data must be calculated or estimated. The present state of the art on the calculation and estimation of several critical environmental parameters, i.e. soil sorption coefficients, tropospheric and microbiological degradation rates will be presented and evaluated including the most recent results from our laboratory.

  15. Environmental laws regulating chemicals: Uses of information in decision making under environmental statutes

    SciTech Connect

    Gaba, J.M.

    1990-12-31

    Three areas are addressed in this paper: generic issues that arise simply in the process of decision-making under environmental statutes; different decision-making standards under various environmental statutes; and efforts to legislate a {open_quotes}safe{close_quotes} or {open_quotes}acceptable{close_quotes} risk from exposure to carcinogenic chemicals.

  16. Predicting the response of populations to environmental change

    SciTech Connect

    Ives, A.R.

    1995-04-01

    When subject to long-term directional environmental perturbations, changes in population densities depend on the positive and negative feedbacks operating through interactions within and among species in a community. This paper develops techniques to predict the long-term responses of population densities to environmental changes using data on short-term population fluctuations driven by short-term environmental variability. In addition to giving quantitative predictions, the techniques also reveal how different qualitative patterns of species interactions either buffer or accentuate population responses to environmental trends. All of the predictions are based on regression coefficients extracted from time series data, and they can therefore be applied with a minimum of mathematical and statistical gymnastics. 48 refs., 10 figs., 4 tabs.

  17. NASA's Earth Science Research and Environmental Predictions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hilsenrath, E.

    2004-01-01

    NASA Earth Science program began in the 1960s with cloud imaging satellites used for weather observations. A fleet of satellites are now in orbit to investigate the Earth Science System to uncover the connections between land, Oceans and the atmosphere. Satellite systems using an array of active and passive remote sensors are used to search for answers on how is the Earth changing and what are the consequences for life on Earth? The answer to these questions can be used for applications to serve societal needs and contribute to decision support systems for weather, hazard, and air quality predictions and mitigation of adverse effects. Partnerships with operational agencies using NASA's observational capabilities are now being explored. The system of the future will require new technology, data assimilation systems which includes data and models that will be used for forecasts that respond to user needs.

  18. Comparative study of biodegradability prediction of chemicals using decision trees, functional trees, and logistic regression.

    PubMed

    Chen, Guangchao; Li, Xuehua; Chen, Jingwen; Zhang, Ya-Nan; Peijnenburg, Willie J G M

    2014-12-01

    Biodegradation is the principal environmental dissipation process of chemicals. As such, it is a dominant factor determining the persistence and fate of organic chemicals in the environment, and is therefore of critical importance to chemical management and regulation. In the present study, the authors developed in silico methods assessing biodegradability based on a large heterogeneous set of 825 organic compounds, using the techniques of the C4.5 decision tree, the functional inner regression tree, and logistic regression. External validation was subsequently carried out by 2 independent test sets of 777 and 27 chemicals. As a result, the functional inner regression tree exhibited the best predictability with predictive accuracies of 81.5% and 81.0%, respectively, on the training set (825 chemicals) and test set I (777 chemicals). Performance of the developed models on the 2 test sets was subsequently compared with that of the Estimation Program Interface (EPI) Suite Biowin 5 and Biowin 6 models, which also showed a better predictability of the functional inner regression tree model. The model built in the present study exhibits a reasonable predictability compared with existing models while possessing a transparent algorithm. Interpretation of the mechanisms of biodegradation was also carried out based on the models developed.

  19. ENVIRONMENTAL ANDROGENS AND ANTIANDROGENS: AN EXPANDING CHEMICAL UNIVERSE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Within the last ten years, awareness has grown about environmental chemicals that display antiandrogenic or androgenic activity. While studies in the early 1990s focused on pesticides that acted as androgen receptor (AR) antagonists, it soon became evident that this was not the ...

  20. The Toxicity Data Landscape for Environmental Chemicals (journal)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Thousands of chemicals are in common use but only a portion of them have undergone significant toxicological evaluation, leading to the need to prioritize the remainder for targeted testing. To address this issue, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) and other orga...

  1. Chemical Fingerprinting of Materials Developed Due To Environmental Issues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Doris A.; McCool, A. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    This paper presents viewgraphs on chemical fingerprinting of materials developed due to environmental issues. Some of the topics include: 1) Aerospace Materials; 2) Building Blocks of Capabilities; 3) Spectroscopic Techniques; 4) Chromatographic Techniques; 5) Factors that Determine Fingerprinting Approach; and 6) Fingerprinting: Combination of instrumental analysis methods that diagnostically characterize a material.

  2. Approaches for predicting effects of unintended environmental ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Tamoxifen is an endocrine-active pharmaceutical (EAP) that is used world-wide. Because tamoxifen is a ubiquitous pharmaceutical and interacts with estrogen receptors, a case study was conducted with this compound to (1) determine effects on reproductive endpoints in a nontarget species (i.e., a fish), (2) compare biologically-active metabolites across species, (3) assess whether in vitro assays predict in vivo results, and (4) investigate metabolomic profiles in tamoxifen-treated fish to better understand the biological mechanisms of tamoxifen toxicity. In reproductive assays, tamoxifen exposure caused a significant reduction in egg production and significantly increased ovarian aromatase activity in spawning adult cunner fish (Tautogolabrus adspersus). In plasma from tamoxifen-exposed cunner, the predominant metabolite was 4-hydroxytamoxifen, while in rats it was N-desmethyltamoxifen. Because 4-hydroxytamoxifen is a more biologically active metabolite than N-desmethyltamoxifen, this difference could result in a different level of risk for the two species. The results of in vitro assays with fish hepatic microsomes to assess tamoxifen metabolism did not match in vivo results, indicating probable differences in excretion of tamoxifen metabolites in fish compared with rats. For the first time, a complete in vitro characterization of the metabolism of tamoxifen using fish microsomes is presented. Furthermore, a metabolomic investigation of cunner gonad extracts dem

  3. Predictive performance of the Vitrigel-eye irritancy test method using 118 chemicals.

    PubMed

    Yamaguchi, Hiroyuki; Kojima, Hajime; Takezawa, Toshiaki

    2016-08-01

    We recently developed a novel Vitrigel-eye irritancy test (EIT) method. The Vitrigel-EIT method is composed of two parts, i.e., the construction of a human corneal epithelium (HCE) model in a collagen vitrigel membrane chamber and the prediction of eye irritancy by analyzing the time-dependent profile of transepithelial electrical resistance values for 3 min after exposing a chemical to the HCE model. In this study, we estimated the predictive performance of Vitrigel-EIT method by testing a total of 118 chemicals. The category determined by the Vitrigel-EIT method in comparison to the globally harmonized system classification revealed that the sensitivity, specificity and accuracy were 90.1%, 65.9% and 80.5%, respectively. Here, five of seven false-negative chemicals were acidic chemicals inducing the irregular rising of transepithelial electrical resistance values. In case of eliminating the test chemical solutions showing pH 5 or lower, the sensitivity, specificity and accuracy were improved to 96.8%, 67.4% and 84.4%, respectively. Meanwhile, nine of 16 false-positive chemicals were classified irritant by the US Environmental Protection Agency. In addition, the disappearance of ZO-1, a tight junction-associated protein and MUC1, a cell membrane-spanning mucin was immunohistologically confirmed in the HCE models after exposing not only eye irritant chemicals but also false-positive chemicals, suggesting that such false-positive chemicals have an eye irritant potential. These data demonstrated that the Vitrigel-EIT method could provide excellent predictive performance to judge the widespread eye irritancy, including very mild irritant chemicals. We hope that the Vitrigel-EIT method contributes to the development of safe commodity chemicals. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Journal of Applied Toxicology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. The Formation Age of Comets: Predicted Physical and Chemical Trends

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nuth, Joesph A., III; Hill, H. G. M.

    2000-01-01

    The chemical composition of a comet has always been considered to be a function of where it formed in the nebula. We suggest that the most important factor in determining a comet's chemistry might actually be when it formed. We present specific predictions of correlations between the dust and volatile components to test our hypothesis.

  5. Prediction of Rate Constants for Catalytic Reactions with Chemical Accuracy.

    PubMed

    Catlow, C Richard A

    2016-08-01

    Ex machina: A computational method for predicting rate constants for reactions within microporous zeolite catalysts with chemical accuracy has recently been reported. A key feature of this method is a stepwise QM/MM approach that allows accuracy to be achieved while using realistic models with accessible computer resources.

  6. The effects of environmental chemicals on renal function.

    PubMed

    Kataria, Anglina; Trasande, Leonardo; Trachtman, Howard

    2015-10-01

    The global incidence of chronic kidney disease (CKD) is increasing among individuals of all ages. Despite advances in proteomics, genomics and metabolomics, there remains a lack of safe and effective drugs to reverse or stabilize renal function in patients with glomerular or tubulointerstitial causes of CKD. Consequently, modifiable risk factors that are associated with a progressive decline in kidney function need to be identified. Numerous reports have documented the adverse effects that occur in response to graded exposure to a wide range of environmental chemicals. This Review summarizes the effects of such chemicals on four aspects of cardiorenal function: albuminuria, glomerular filtration rate, blood pressure and serum uric acid concentration. We focus on compounds that individuals are likely to be exposed to as a consequence of normal consumer activities or medical treatment, namely phthalates, bisphenol A, polyfluorinated alkyl acids, dioxins and furans, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and polychlorinated biphenyls. Environmental exposure to these chemicals during everyday life could have adverse consequences on renal function and might contribute to progressive cumulative renal injury over a lifetime. Regulatory efforts should be made to limit individual exposure to environmental chemicals in an attempt to reduce the incidence of cardiorenal disease.

  7. The effects of environmental chemicals on renal function

    PubMed Central

    Kataria, Anglina; Trasande, Leonardo; Trachtman, Howard

    2015-01-01

    The global incidence of chronic kidney disease (CKD) is increasing among individuals of all ages. Despite advances in proteomics, genomics and metabolomics, there remains a lack of safe and effective drugs to reverse or stabilize renal function in patients with glomerular or tubulointerstitial causes of CKD. Consequently, modifiable risk factors that are associated with a progressive decline in kidney function need to be identified. Numerous reports have documented the adverse effects that occur in response to graded exposure to a wide range of environmental chemicals. This Review summarizes the effects of such chemicals on four aspects of cardiorenal function: albuminuria, glomerular filtration rate, blood pressure and serum uric acid concentration. We focus on compounds that individuals are likely to be exposed to as a consequence of normal consumer activities or medical treatment, namely phthalates, bisphenol A, polyfluorinated alkyl acids, dioxins and furans, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and polychlorinated biphenyls. Environmental exposure to these chemicals during everyday life could have adverse consequences on renal function and might contribute to progressive cumulative renal injury over a lifetime. Regulatory efforts should be made to limit individual exposure to environmental chemicals in an attempt to reduce the incidence of cardiorenal disease. PMID:26100504

  8. Are chemicals in articles an obstacle for reaching environmental goals? - Missing links in EU chemical management.

    PubMed

    Molander, Linda; Breitholtz, Magnus; Andersson, Patrik L; Rybacka, Aleksandra; Rudén, Christina

    2012-10-01

    It is widely acknowledged that the management of risks associated with chemicals in articles needs to be improved. The EU environmental policy states that environmental damage should be rectified at source. It is therefore motivated that the risk management of substances in articles also takes particular consideration to those substances identified as posing a risk in different environmental compartments. The primary aim of the present study was to empirically analyze to what extent the regulation of chemicals in articles under REACH is coherent with the rules concerning chemicals in the Sewage Sludge Directive (SSD) and the Water Framework Directive (WFD). We also analyzed the chemical variation of the organic substances regulated under these legislations in relation to the most heavily used chemicals. The results show that 16 of 24 substances used in or potentially present in articles and regulated by the SSD or the WFD are also identified under REACH either as a substance of very high concern (SVHC) or subject to some restrictions. However, for these substances we conclude that there is limited coherence between the legislations, since the identification as an SVHC does not in itself encompass any use restrictions, and the restrictions in REACH are in many cases limited to a particular use, and thus all other uses are allowed. Only a minor part of chemicals in commerce is regulated and these show a chemical variation that deviates from classical legacy pollutants. This warrants new tools to identify potentially hazardous chemicals in articles. We also noted that chemicals monitored in the environment under the WFD deviate in their chemistry from the ones regulated by REACH. In summary, we argue that to obtain improved resource efficiency and a sustainable development it is necessary to minimize the input of chemicals identified as hazardous to health or the environment into articles.

  9. Application of a predictive Bayesian model to environmental accounting.

    PubMed

    Anex, R P; Englehardt, J D

    2001-03-30

    Environmental accounting techniques are intended to capture important environmental costs and benefits that are often overlooked in standard accounting practices. Environmental accounting methods themselves often ignore or inadequately represent large but highly uncertain environmental costs and costs conditioned by specific prior events. Use of a predictive Bayesian model is demonstrated for the assessment of such highly uncertain environmental and contingent costs. The predictive Bayesian approach presented generates probability distributions for the quantity of interest (rather than parameters thereof). A spreadsheet implementation of a previously proposed predictive Bayesian model, extended to represent contingent costs, is described and used to evaluate whether a firm should undertake an accelerated phase-out of its PCB containing transformers. Variability and uncertainty (due to lack of information) in transformer accident frequency and severity are assessed simultaneously using a combination of historical accident data, engineering model-based cost estimates, and subjective judgement. Model results are compared using several different risk measures. Use of the model for incorporation of environmental risk management into a company's overall risk management strategy is discussed.

  10. Predicting on-site environmental impacts of municipal engineering works

    SciTech Connect

    Gangolells, Marta Casals, Miquel Forcada, Núria Macarulla, Marcel

    2014-01-15

    The research findings fill a gap in the body of knowledge by presenting an effective way to evaluate the significance of on-site environmental impacts of municipal engineering works prior to the construction stage. First, 42 on-site environmental impacts of municipal engineering works were identified by means of a process-oriented approach. Then, 46 indicators and their corresponding significance limits were determined on the basis of a statistical analysis of 25 new-build and remodelling municipal engineering projects. In order to ensure the objectivity of the assessment process, direct and indirect indicators were always based on quantitative data from the municipal engineering project documents. Finally, two case studies were analysed and found to illustrate the practical use of the proposed model. The model highlights the significant environmental impacts of a particular municipal engineering project prior to the construction stage. Consequently, preventive actions can be planned and implemented during on-site activities. The results of the model also allow a comparison of proposed municipal engineering projects and alternatives with respect to the overall on-site environmental impact and the absolute importance of a particular environmental aspect. These findings are useful within the framework of the environmental impact assessment process, as they help to improve the identification and evaluation of on-site environmental aspects of municipal engineering works. The findings may also be of use to construction companies that are willing to implement an environmental management system or simply wish to improve on-site environmental performance in municipal engineering projects. -- Highlights: • We present a model to predict the environmental impacts of municipal engineering works. • It highlights significant on-site environmental impacts prior to the construction stage. • Findings are useful within the environmental impact assessment process. • They also

  11. Predicting People's Environmental Behaviour: Theory of Planned Behaviour and Model of Responsible Environmental Behaviour

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chao, Yu-Long

    2012-01-01

    Using different measures of self-reported and other-reported environmental behaviour (EB), two important theoretical models explaining EB--Hines, Hungerford and Tomera's model of responsible environmental behaviour (REB) and Ajzen's theory of planned behaviour (TPB)--were compared regarding the fit between model and data, predictive ability,…

  12. Environmental chemicals impacting the thyroid: targets and consequences.

    PubMed

    Zoeller, R Thomas

    2007-09-01

    Thyroid hormone (TH) is essential for normal brain development, but the specific actions of TH differ across developmental time and brain region. These actions of TH are mediated largely by a combination of thyroid hormone receptor (TR) isoforms that exhibit specific temporal and spatial patterns of expression during animal and human brain development. In addition, TR action is influenced by different cofactors, proteins that directly link the TR protein to functional changes in gene expression. Considering the importance of TH signaling in development, it is important to consider environmental chemicals that may interfere with this signaling. Recent research indicates that environmental chemicals can interfere with thyroid function and with TH signaling. The key issues are to understand the mechanism by which these chemicals act and the dose at which they act, and whether adaptive responses intrinsic to the thyroid system can ameliorate potential adverse consequences (i.e., compensate). In addition, several recent studies show that TRs may be unintended targets of chemicals manufactured for industrial purposes to which humans and wildlife are routinely exposed. Polychlorinated biphenyls, polybrominated diphenyl ethers, bisphenol-A, and specific halogenated derivatives and metabolites of these compounds have been shown to bind to TRs and perhaps have selective effects on TR functions. A number of common chemicals, including polybrominated biphenyls and phthalates, may also exert such effects. When we consider the importance of TH in brain development, it will be important to pursue the possibilities that these chemicals-or interactions among chemical classes-are affecting children's health by influencing TH signaling in the developing brain.

  13. UK Environmental Prediction - integration and evaluation at the convective scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fallmann, Joachim; Lewis, Huw; Castillo, Juan Manuel; Pearson, David; Harris, Chris; Saulter, Andy; Bricheno, Lucy; Blyth, Eleanor

    2016-04-01

    It has long been understood that accurate prediction and warning of the impacts of severe weather requires an integrated approach to forecasting. For example, high impact weather is typically manifested through various interactions and feedbacks between different components of the Earth System. Damaging high winds can lead to significant damage from the large waves and storm surge along coastlines. The impact of intense rainfall can be translated through saturated soils and land surface processes, high river flows and flooding inland. The substantial impacts on individuals, businesses and infrastructure of such events indicate a pressing need to understand better the value that might be delivered through more integrated environmental prediction. To address this need, the Met Office, NERC Centre for Ecology & Hydrology and NERC National Oceanography Centre have begun to develop the foundations of a coupled high resolution probabilistic forecast system for the UK at km-scale. This links together existing model components of the atmosphere, coastal ocean, land surface and hydrology. Our initial focus has been on a 2-year Prototype project to demonstrate the UK coupled prediction concept in research mode. This presentation will provide an update on UK environmental prediction activities. We will present the results from the initial implementation of an atmosphere-land-ocean coupled system and discuss progress and initial results from further development to integrate wave interactions. We will discuss future directions and opportunities for collaboration in environmental prediction, and the challenges to realise the potential of integrated regional coupled forecasting for improving predictions and applications.

  14. Integrated chemical management system: A tool for managing chemical information at the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site

    SciTech Connect

    Costain, D.

    1995-07-01

    The Integrated Chemical Management System is a computer-based chemical information at the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site. Chemical containers are identified by bar code labels and information on the type, quantity and location of chemicals are tracked on individual data bases in separate buildings. Chemical inventories from multiple buildings are uploaded to a central sitewide chemical data base where reports are available from Product, Waste, and Chemical Use modules. Hazardous chemical information is provided by a separate Material Safety Data Sheet module and excess chemicals are traded between chemical owners and users with the aid of the Chemical Exchange Module.

  15. Predicting bioconcentration of chemicals into vegetation from soil or air using the molecular connectivity index

    SciTech Connect

    Dowdy, D.L.; McKone, T.E.; Hsieh, D.P.H.

    1995-12-31

    Bioconcentration factors (BCFs) are the ratio of chemical concentration found in an exposed organism (in this case a plant) to the concentration in an air or soil exposure medium. The authors examine here the use of molecular connectivity indices (MCIs) as quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARS) for predicting BCFs for organic chemicals between plants and air or soil. The authors compare the reliability of the octanol-air partition coefficient (K{sub oa}) to the MC based prediction method for predicting plant/air partition coefficients. The authors also compare the reliability of the octanol/water partition coefficient (K{sub ow}) to the MC based prediction method for predicting plant/soil partition coefficients. The results here indicate that, relative to the use of K{sub ow} or K{sub oa} as predictors of BCFs the MC can substantially increase the reliability with which BCFs can be estimated. The authors find that the MC provides a relatively precise and accurate method for predicting the potential biotransfer of a chemical from environmental media into plants. In addition, the MC is much faster and more cost effective than direct measurements.

  16. Environmental exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals and miscarriage.

    PubMed

    Krieg, Sacha A; Shahine, Lora K; Lathi, Ruth B

    2016-09-15

    Establishment of early pregnancy is the result of complex biochemical interactions between the decidua and blastocyst. Any alteration in this chemical dialogue has the potential to result in adverse pregnancy outcomes including miscarriage. Sporadic miscarriage is the most common complication of pregnancy and can be caused by multiple factors. While the most common cause of miscarriage is genetic abnormalities in the fetus, other contributing factors certainly can play a role in early loss. One such factor is environmental exposure, in particular to endocrine-disrupting chemicals, which has the potential to interfere with endogenous hormone action. These effects can be deleterious, especially in early pregnancy when the hormonal milieu surrounding implantation is in delicate balance. The purpose of this paper is to review the current evidence on the role of environmental toxins in reproduction.

  17. Evaluating the environmental hazard of industrial chemicals from data collected during the REACH registration process.

    PubMed

    Gustavsson, Mikael B; Hellohf, Andreas; Backhaus, Thomas

    2017-05-15

    Registration dossiers for 11,678 industrial chemicals were retrieved from the database of the European Chemicals Agency, of which 3566 provided a numerical entry for the corresponding predicted no effect concentration for the freshwater environment (PNEC). A distribution-based examination of 2244 of these entries reveals that the average PNEC of an industrial chemical in Europe is 238nmol/L, covering a span of 9 orders of magnitude. A comparison with biocides, pesticides, pharmaceuticals and WFD-priority pollutants reveals that, in average, industrial chemicals are least hazardous (hazard ranking: industrial chemicals≪pharmaceuticalschemicals have a lower environmental threshold than the median pesticide and 73 have a lower environmental threshold than even the median biocide. Industrial chemicals produced and/or imported in higher tonnages have, on average, higher PNECs which most likely is due to the lower assessment factors used for the PNEC determination. This pattern indicates that the initial AF of 1000 comprises a measure of conservatism. The vast majority of PNEC values are driven by EC50 and NOEC data from tests with Daphnia magna. Tests with marine species are rarely provided for the hazard characterization of industrial chemicals.

  18. The Chemical Technology Division at Argonne National Laboratory: Applying chemical innovation to environmental problems

    SciTech Connect

    1995-06-01

    The Chemical Technology Division is one of the largest technical divisions at Argonne National Laboratory, a leading center for research and development related to energy and environmental issues. Since its inception in 1948, the Division has pioneered in developing separations processes for the nuclear industry. The current scope of activities includes R&D on methods for disposing of radioactive and hazardous wastes and on energy conversion processes with improved efficiencies, lower costs, and reduced environmental impact. Many of the technologies developed by CMT can be applied to solve manufacturing as well as environmental problems of industry.

  19. Improving Prediction of Prostate Cancer Recurrence using Chemical Imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kwak, Jin Tae; Kajdacsy-Balla, André; Macias, Virgilia; Walsh, Michael; Sinha, Saurabh; Bhargava, Rohit

    2015-03-01

    Precise Outcome prediction is crucial to providing optimal cancer care across the spectrum of solid cancers. Clinically-useful tools to predict risk of adverse events (metastases, recurrence), however, remain deficient. Here, we report an approach to predict the risk of prostate cancer recurrence, at the time of initial diagnosis, using a combination of emerging chemical imaging, a diagnostic protocol that focuses simultaneously on the tumor and its microenvironment, and data analysis of frequent patterns in molecular expression. Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopic imaging was employed to record the structure and molecular content from tumors prostatectomy. We analyzed data from a patient cohort that is mid-grade dominant - which is the largest cohort of patients in the modern era and in whom prognostic methods are largely ineffective. Our approach outperforms the two widely used tools, Kattan nomogram and CAPRA-S score in a head-to-head comparison for predicting risk of recurrence. Importantly, the approach provides a histologic basis to the prediction that identifies chemical and morphologic features in the tumor microenvironment that is independent of conventional clinical information, opening the door to similar advances in other solid tumors.

  20. Invertebrates in testing of environmental chemicals: are they alternatives?

    PubMed Central

    Lagadic, L; Caquet, T

    1998-01-01

    An enlarged interpretation of alternatives in toxicology testing includes the replacement of one animal species with another, preferably a nonmammalian species. This paper reviews the potential of invertebrates in testing environmental chemicals and provides evidence of their usefulness in alternative testing methodologies. The first part of this review addresses the use of invertebrates in laboratory toxicology testing. Problems in extrapolating results obtained in invertebrates to those obtained from vertebrates are noted, suggesting that invertebrates can essentially be used in addition to rather than as replacements for vertebrates in laboratory toxicity tests. However, evaluation of the ecologic impact of environmental chemicals must include defining end points that may frequently differ from those classically used in biomedical research. In this context, alternative approaches using invertebrates may be more pertinent. The second part of the review therefore focuses on the use of invertebrates in situ to assess the environmental impact of pollutants. Advantages of invertebrates in ecotoxicologic investigation are presented for their usefulness for seeking mechanistic links between effects occurring at the individual level and consequences for higher levels of biologic organization (e.g., population and community). In the end, it is considered that replacement of vertebrates by invertebrates in ecotoxicity testing is likely to become a reality when basic knowledge of metabolic, physiologic, and developmental patterns in the latter will be sufficient to assess the effect of a given chemical through end points that could be different between invertebrates and vertebrates. PMID:9599707

  1. An expert system for prediction of chemical toxicity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hickey, James P.; Aldridge, Andrew J.; Passino-Reader, Dora R.; Frank, Anthony M.

    1992-01-01

    The National Fisheries Research Center- Great Lakes has developed an interactive computer program that uses the structure of an organic molecule to predict its acute toxicity to four aquatic species. The expert system software, written in the muLISP language, identifies the skeletal structures and substituent groups of an organic molecule from a user-supplied standard chemical notation known as a SMILES string, and then generates values for four solvatochromic parameters. Multiple regression equations relate these parameters to the toxicities (expressed as log10LC50s and log10EC50s, along with 95% confidence intervals) for four species. The system is demonstrated by prediction of toxicity for anilide-type pesticides to the fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas). This software is designed for use on an IBM-compatible personal computer by personnel with minimal toxicology background for rapid estimation of chemical toxicity. The system has numerous applications, with much potential for use in the pharmaceutical industry

  2. Chemical stimulation in unconventional hydrocarbons extraction in the USA: a preliminary environmental risk assessment.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sutra, Emilie; Spada, Matteo; Burgherr, Peter

    2016-04-01

    While the exploitation of unconventional resources recently shows an extensive development, the stimulation techniques in use in this domain arouse growing public concerns. Often in the shadow of the disputed hydraulic fracturing process, the matrix acidizing is however a complementary or alternative procedure to enhance the reservoir connectivity. Although acidizing processes are widespread within the traditional hydrocarbons sources exploration, the matrix acidizing does not appear to be commonly used in unconventional hydrocarbons formations due to their low permeability. Nonetheless, this process has been recently applied to the Monterey formation, a shale oil play in California. These stimulation fluids are composed by various chemicals, what represents a matter of concern for public as well as for authorities. As a consequence, a risk assessment implying an exposure and toxicity analysis is needed. Focusing on site surface accidents, e.g., leak of a chemical from a storage tank, we develop in this study concentration scenarios for different exposure pathways to estimate the potential environmental risk associated with the use of specific hazardous substances in the matrix acidizing process for unconventional hydrocarbon reservoirs in the USA. Primary, information about the usage of different hazardous substances have been collected in order to extract the most frequently used chemicals. Afterwards, a probabilistic estimation of the environmental risk associated with the use of these chemicals is carried out by comparing the Predicted Environmental Concentrations (PEC) distribution with the Predicted No Effect Concentrations (PNEC) value. The latter is collected from a literature review, whereas the PEC is estimated as probability distribution concentrations in different environmental compartments (e.g., soil) built upon various predefined accident scenarios. By applying a probabilistic methodology for the concentrations, the level at which the used chemicals

  3. Applying mechanisms of chemical toxicity to predict drug safety.

    PubMed

    Guengerich, F Peter; MacDonald, James S

    2007-03-01

    Toxicology can no longer be used only as a science that reacts to problems but must be more proactive in predicting potential human safety issues with new drug candidates. Success in this area must be based on an understanding of the mechanisms of toxicity. This review summarizes and extends some of the concepts of an American Chemical Society ProSpectives meeting on the title subject held in June 2006. One important area is the discernment of the exact nature of the most common problems in drug toxicity. Knowledge of chemical structure alerts and relevant biological pathways are important. Biological activation to reactive products and off-target pharmacology are considered to be major contexts of drug toxicity, although defining exactly what the contributions are is not trivial. Some newer approaches to screening for both have been developed. A goal in predictive toxicology is the use of in vitro methods and database development to make predictions concerning potential modes of toxicity and to stratify drug candidates for further development. Such predictions are desirable for several economic and other reasons but are certainly not routine yet. However, progress has been made using several approaches. Some examples of the application of studies of wide-scale biological responses are now available, with incorporation into development paradigms.

  4. Use of submitochondrial particles for prediction of chemical toxicity in man

    SciTech Connect

    Knobeloch, L.M.; Blondin, G.A.; Harkin, J.M. )

    1990-05-01

    Three bioassays which use submitochondrial electron transport particles (ETP) to evaluate chemical toxicity have been developed. These tests were initially designed for use in water quality monitoring. However, they are also valuable for assessing the toxicity of new and existing chemicals. The current investigation studies the ability of these procedures to predict in vivo tissue concentrations associated with clinical illness in man. To examine this potential, data obtained using the mitochondrial tests were compared to chemical concentrations measured in human blood samples obtained during the acute stage of chemical-induced illness. Twenty-nine chemicals were used in the comparison including 6 metals, 8 pesticides, 5 drugs, 4 solvents and 3 alcohols. The results of this study support the hypothesis that the mitochondrial bioassays can successfully predict the in vivo toxicity of many diverse chemicals. Properly performed and evaluated, these short-term tests may be useful in identifying potential environmental pollutants, selecting compounds for market development and prioritizing substances for more extensive testing in animals.

  5. Environmental Impact on Vascular Development Predicted by High-Throughput Screening

    PubMed Central

    Judson, Richard S.; Reif, David M.; Sipes, Nisha S.; Singh, Amar V.; Chandler, Kelly J.; DeWoskin, Rob; Dix, David J.; Kavlock, Robert J.; Knudsen, Thomas B.

    2011-01-01

    Background: Understanding health risks to embryonic development from exposure to environmental chemicals is a significant challenge given the diverse chemical landscape and paucity of data for most of these compounds. High-throughput screening (HTS) in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ToxCast™ project provides vast data on an expanding chemical library currently consisting of > 1,000 unique compounds across > 500 in vitro assays in phase I (complete) and Phase II (under way). This public data set can be used to evaluate concentration-dependent effects on many diverse biological targets and build predictive models of prototypical toxicity pathways that can aid decision making for assessments of human developmental health and disease. Objective: We mined the ToxCast phase I data set to identify signatures for potential chemical disruption of blood vessel formation and remodeling. Methods: ToxCast phase I screened 309 chemicals using 467 HTS assays across nine assay technology platforms. The assays measured direct interactions between chemicals and molecular targets (receptors, enzymes), as well as downstream effects on reporter gene activity or cellular consequences. We ranked the chemicals according to individual vascular bioactivity score and visualized the ranking using ToxPi (Toxicological Priority Index) profiles. Results: Targets in inflammatory chemokine signaling, the vascular endothelial growth factor pathway, and the plasminogen-activating system were strongly perturbed by some chemicals, and we found positive correlations with developmental effects from the U.S. EPA ToxRefDB (Toxicological Reference Database) in vivo database containing prenatal rat and rabbit guideline studies. We observed distinctly different correlative patterns for chemicals with effects in rabbits versus rats, despite derivation of in vitro signatures based on human cells and cell-free biochemical targets, implying conservation but potentially differential

  6. Environmental management of assembled chemical weapons assessment program.

    SciTech Connect

    Frey, G.; Mohrman, G.; Templin, B. R.

    1999-05-07

    Environmental planning and management was an integral part of the ACWA Program planning process. To ensure that environmental protection issues could be addressed expeditiously and not delay the demonstrations, the PMACWA scaled the technology demonstrations such that simplified regulatory processes and existing research and development facilities could be used. The use of enclosed facilities for the demonstrations prevents any uncontrolled discharges to the environment and made it possible to conduct environmental assessments relatively quickly. The PMACWA also arranged for public briefings to ease any community concerns over the operations with chemical weapons. These steps precluded regulatory and community resistance to the ACWA activities. The cooperation of the regulators and stakeholders has been a key element in enabling the ACWA Program to move with the speed that it has to date. Technology demonstrations are currently underway and are scheduled to be completed in late May 1999. The data collected during these demonstrations will be used to prepare and submit a summary report to Congress by August 1999. The challenge continues for the ACWA management to guide the demonstrations to completion and to plan for possible pilot testing. As the scale of the ACWA facilities increase in size, the ease of reduced regulatory processes and environmental analyses will no longer be possible. However, the PMACWA will continue to explore all paths through the environmental process to speed the ACWA program to its goals while at the same time ensuring adequate protection of public health and safety and of the environment.

  7. Environmental chemical exposures and disturbances of heme synthesis.

    PubMed Central

    Daniell, W E; Stockbridge, H L; Labbe, R F; Woods, J S; Anderson, K E; Bissell, D M; Bloomer, J R; Ellefson, R D; Moore, M R; Pierach, C A; Schreiber, W E; Tefferi, A; Franklin, G M

    1997-01-01

    Porphyrias are relatively uncommon inherited or acquired disorders in which clinical manifestations are attributable to a disturbance of heme synthesis (porphyrin metabolism), usually in association with endogenous or exogenous stressors. Porphyrias are characterized by elevations of heme precursors in blood, urine, and/or stool. A number of chemicals, particularly metals and halogenated hydrocarbons, induce disturbances of heme synthesis in experimental animals. Certain chemicals have also been linked to porphyria or porphyrinuria in humans, generally involving chronic industrial exposures or environmental exposures much higher than those usually encountered. A noteworthy example is the Turkish epidemic of porphyria cutanea tarda produced by accidental ingestion of wheat treated with the fungicide hexachlorobenzene. Measurements of excreted heme precursors have the potential to serve as biological markers for harmful but preclinical effects of certain chemical exposures; this potential warrants further research and applied field studies. It has been hypothesized that several otherwise unexplained chemical-associated illnesses, such as multiple chemical sensitivity syndrome, may represent mild chronic cases of porphyria or other acquired abnormalities in heme synthesis. This review concludes that, although it is reasonable to consider such hypotheses, there is currently no convincing evidence that these illnesses are mediated by a disturbance of heme synthesis; it is premature or unfounded to base clinical management on such explanations unless laboratory data are diagnostic for porphyria. This review discusses the limitations of laboratory measures of heme synthesis, and diagnostic guidelines are provided to assist in evaluating the symptomatic individual suspected of having a porphyria. PMID:9114276

  8. UK Environmental Prediction - integration and evaluation at the convective scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fallmann, Joachim; Lewis, Huw; Castillo, Juan Manuel; Pearson, David; Harris, Chris; Saulter, Andy; Bricheno, Lucy; Blyth, Eleanor

    2016-04-01

    Traditionally, the simulation of regional ocean, wave and atmosphere components of the Earth System have been considered separately, with some information on other components provided by means of boundary or forcing conditions. More recently, the potential value of a more integrated approach, as required for global climate and Earth System prediction, for regional short-term applications has begun to gain increasing research effort. In the UK, this activity is motivated by an understanding that accurate prediction and warning of the impacts of severe weather requires an integrated approach to forecasting. The substantial impacts on individuals, businesses and infrastructure of such events indicate a pressing need to understand better the value that might be delivered through more integrated environmental prediction. To address this need, the Met Office, NERC Centre for Ecology & Hydrology and NERC National Oceanography Centre have begun to develop the foundations of a coupled high resolution probabilistic forecast system for the UK at km-scale. This links together existing model components of the atmosphere, coastal ocean, land surface and hydrology. Our initial focus has been on a 2-year Prototype project to demonstrate the UK coupled prediction concept in research mode. This presentation will provide an update on UK environmental prediction activities. We will present the results from the initial implementation of an atmosphere-land-ocean coupled system, including a new eddy-permitting resolution ocean component, and discuss progress and initial results from further development to integrate wave interactions in this relatively high resolution system. We will discuss future directions and opportunities for collaboration in environmental prediction, and the challenges to realise the potential of integrated regional coupled forecasting for improving predictions and applications.

  9. Chemodynamics: transport and behavior of chemicals in the environment--a problem in environmental health.

    PubMed Central

    Freed, V H; Chiou, C T; Haque, R

    1977-01-01

    In the manufacture and use of the several thousand chemicals employed by technological societies, portions of these chemicals escape or are intentionally introduced into the environment. The behavior, fate, and to some extent the effects produced by these chemicals are a result of a complex interaction of the properties of the chemical with the various processes governing transport, degradation, sequestration, and uptake by organisms. In addition, such processes as adsorption, evaporation, partitioning, and degradation are influenced by ambient conditions of temperature, air movement, moisture, presence of other chemicals, and the concentration and properties of the subject chemicals. These influence the level and extent of exposure to these chemicals that man might receive. Study of the physiochemical properties and extent of exposure to these chem;cals that man might receive. Study of the physiochemical properties of compounds in relation to these various processes has provided a basis for better understanding of the quantitative behavior. Such information is useful in development of predictive models on behavior and fate of the chemicals in relation to human exposure. Beyond this, it provides information that could be used to devise procedures of manufacture, use, and disposal that would minimize environmental contamination. Some of the physical principles involved in chemodynamics are presented in this review. PMID:598352

  10. Influence of heredity on human sensitivity to environmental chemicals

    SciTech Connect

    Weber, W.W.

    1995-12-31

    Hereditary peculiarities in individual responses to environmental chemicals are a common occurrence in human populations. Genetic variation in glutathione S-transferase, CYP1A2, N-acetyltransferase, and paraoxonase exemplify the relationship of metabolic variation to individual susceptibility to cancer and other toxicants of environmental origin. Heritable receptor protein variants, a subset of proteins of enormous pharmacogenetic, potential that have not thus far been extensively explored form the pharmacogenetic standpoint, and also considered. Examples of interest that are considered include receptor variants associated with retinoic acid resistance in acute promyelocytic leukemia, with paradoxical responses to antiandrogens in prostate cancer, and with retinitis pigmentosa. Additional heritable protein variants of pharmacogenetic interest that result in antibiotic-induced deafness, glucocorticoid-remediable aldosteronism and hypertension, the long-QT syndrome, and beryllium-induced lung disease are also discussed. These traits demonstrate how knowledge of the molecular basis and mechanism of the variant response may contribute to its prevention in sensitive persons as well as to improved therapy for genetically conditioned disorders that arise form environmental chemicals. 99 refs.

  11. The chemical biology of naphthoquinones and its environmental implications.

    PubMed

    Kumagai, Yoshito; Shinkai, Yasuhiro; Miura, Takashi; Cho, Arthur K

    2012-01-01

    Quinones are a group of highly reactive organic chemical species that interact with biological systems to promote inflammatory, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer actions and to induce toxicities. This review describes the chemistry, biochemistry, and cellular effects of 1,2- and 1,4-naphthoquinones and their derivatives. The naphthoquinones are of particular interest because of their prevalence as natural products and as environmental chemicals, present in the atmosphere as products of fuel and tobacco combustion. 1,2- and 1,4-naphthoquinones are also toxic metabolites of naphthalene, the major polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbon present in ambient air. Quinones exert their actions through two reactions: as prooxidants, reducing oxygen to reactive oxygen species; and as electrophiles, forming covalent bonds with tissue nucleophiles. The targets for these reactions include regulatory proteins such as protein tyrosine phosphatases; Kelch-like ECH-associated protein 1, the regulatory protein for NF-E2-related factor 2; and the glycolysis enzyme glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase. Through their actions on regulatory proteins, quinones affect various cell signaling pathways that promote and protect against inflammatory responses and cell damage. These actions vary with the specific quinone and its concentration. Effects of exposure to naphthoquinones as environmental chemicals can vary with the physical state, i.e., whether the quinone is particle bound or is in the vapor state. The exacerbation of pulmonary diseases by air pollutants can, in part, be attributed to quinone action.

  12. The effect of environmental chemicals on the tumor microenvironment

    PubMed Central

    Casey, Stephanie C.; Vaccari, Monica; Al-Mulla, Fahd; Al-Temaimi, Rabeah; Amedei, Amedeo; Barcellos-Hoff, Mary Helen; Brown, Dustin G.; Chapellier, Marion; Christopher, Joseph; Curran, Colleen S.; Forte, Stefano; Hamid, Roslida A.; Heneberg, Petr; Koch, Daniel C.; Krishnakumar, P.K.; Laconi, Ezio; Maguer-Satta, Veronique; Marongiu, Fabio; Memeo, Lorenzo; Mondello, Chiara; Raju, Jayadev; Roman, Jesse; Roy, Rabindra; Ryan, Elizabeth P.; Ryeom, Sandra; Salem, Hosni K.; Scovassi, A.Ivana; Singh, Neetu; Soucek, Laura; Vermeulen, Louis; Whitfield, Jonathan R.; Woodrick, Jordan; Colacci, Anna Maria; Bisson, William H.; Felsher, Dean W.

    2015-01-01

    Potentially carcinogenic compounds may cause cancer through direct DNA damage or through indirect cellular or physiological effects. To study possible carcinogens, the fields of endocrinology, genetics, epigenetics, medicine, environmental health, toxicology, pharmacology and oncology must be considered. Disruptive chemicals may also contribute to multiple stages of tumor development through effects on the tumor microenvironment. In turn, the tumor microenvironment consists of a complex interaction among blood vessels that feed the tumor, the extracellular matrix that provides structural and biochemical support, signaling molecules that send messages and soluble factors such as cytokines. The tumor microenvironment also consists of many host cellular effectors including multipotent stromal cells/mesenchymal stem cells, fibroblasts, endothelial cell precursors, antigen-presenting cells, lymphocytes and innate immune cells. Carcinogens can influence the tumor microenvironment through effects on epithelial cells, the most common origin of cancer, as well as on stromal cells, extracellular matrix components and immune cells. Here, we review how environmental exposures can perturb the tumor microenvironment. We suggest a role for disrupting chemicals such as nickel chloride, Bisphenol A, butyltins, methylmercury and paraquat as well as more traditional carcinogens, such as radiation, and pharmaceuticals, such as diabetes medications, in the disruption of the tumor microenvironment. Further studies interrogating the role of chemicals and their mixtures in dose-dependent effects on the tumor microenvironment could have important general mechanistic implications for the etiology and prevention of tumorigenesis. PMID:26106136

  13. Predictions of Chemical Weather in Asia: The EU Panda Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brasseur, G. P.; Petersen, A. K.; Wang, X.; Granier, C.; Bouarar, I.

    2014-12-01

    Air quality has become a pressing problem in Asia and specifically in China due to rapid economic development (i.e., rapidly expanding motor vehicle fleets, growing industrial and power generation activities, domestic and biomass burning). In spite of efforts to reduce chemical emissions, high levels of particle matter and ozone are observed and lead to severe health problems with a large number of premature deaths. To support efforts to reduce air pollution, the European Union is supporting the PANDA project whose objective is to use space and surface observations of chemical species as well as advanced meteorological and chemical models to analyze and predict air quality in China. The Project involves 7 European and 7 Chinese groups. The paper will describe the objectives of the project and present some first accomplishments. The project focuses on the improvement of methods for monitoring air quality from combined space and in-situ observations, the development of a comprehensive prediction system that makes use of these observations, the elaboration of indicators for air quality in support of policies, and the development of toolboxes for the dissemination of information.

  14. 77 FR 12867 - Accreditation of ALTOL Chemical and Environmental Lab Inc., as a Commercial Laboratory

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-03-02

    ... SECURITY U.S. Customs and Border Protection Accreditation of ALTOL Chemical and Environmental Lab Inc., as.... ACTION: Notice of accreditation of Altol Chemical and Environmental Lab Inc., as a commercial laboratory. SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that, pursuant to 19 CFR 151.12, Altol Chemical and Environmental Lab...

  15. Prediction of odor from pig production based on chemical odorants.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Michael J; Adamsen, Anders Peter S; Pedersen, Poul; Feilberg, Anders

    2012-01-01

    The present work was performed to investigate the use of odorant measurements for prediction of odor concentration in facilities with growing-finishing pigs and to analyze the odorant composition in facilities with different floor and ventilation systems. Air was sampled in Nalophan bags, odor concentrations were measured by dilution-to-threshold olfactometry, and concentrations of odorants were measured by proton-transfer-reaction mass spectrometry (PTR-MS). Olfactometry and chemical analyses were synchronized to take place at identical time intervals after sampling. A principal component analysis revealed that different facilities for growing-finishing pigs can be distinguished based on the odorants. Pit ventilation comprising a small amount of the total ventilation air (10-20%) in facilities with both room and pit ventilation can be used to concentrate odorants, whereas the room ventilation contains lower concentrations of most odorants. A partial least squares regression model demonstrated that prediction of the odor concentration based on odorants measured by PTR-MS is feasible. Hydrogen sulfide, methanethiol, trimethylamine, and 4-methylphenol were identified as the compounds having the largest influence on the prediction of odor concentration, whereas carboxylic acids had no significant influence. In conclusion, chemical measurement of odorants by PTR-MS is an alternative for expressing the odor concentration in facilities with growing-finishing pigs that can be used to increase the understanding of odor from different types of facilities and improve the development of odor reduction technologies.

  16. Modelling Chemical Reasoning to Predict and Invent Reactions.

    PubMed

    Segler, Marwin H S; Waller, Mark P

    2016-11-11

    The ability to reason beyond established knowledge allows organic chemists to solve synthetic problems and invent novel transformations. Herein, we propose a model that mimics chemical reasoning, and formalises reaction prediction as finding missing links in a knowledge graph. We have constructed a knowledge graph containing 14.4 million molecules and 8.2 million binary reactions, which represents the bulk of all chemical reactions ever published in the scientific literature. Our model outperforms a rule-based expert system in the reaction prediction task for 180 000 randomly selected binary reactions. The data-driven model generalises even beyond known reaction types, and is thus capable of effectively (re-)discovering novel transformations (even including transition metal-catalysed reactions). Our model enables computers to infer hypotheses about reactivity and reactions by only considering the intrinsic local structure of the graph and because each single reaction prediction is typically achieved in a sub-second time frame, the model can be used as a high-throughput generator of reaction hypotheses for reaction discovery.

  17. [Environmental history as an anthropologic topic. Contribution to "chemical anthropology"].

    PubMed

    Grupe, G

    1990-06-01

    Human population history is firmly connected with temporal and regional changes of the environment. Whether natural or anthropogene, alteration of environmental features lead to changes of human life-style and to the development of adaptive strategies. The demand of resources for his subsistence has led man to diverse impacts on his environment since ever. Thus, environmental history is a scientific topic for anthropologists. The research potential of trace element studies of excavated human skeletons for the reconstruction of natural and socio-cultural environments as well as for distribution patterns of hazardous substances is outlined for the European Middle Ages. The scientific value of unravelling past man/environment-interrelationships for both the historical and applied sciences and the place of any "chemical anthropology" within this context is discussed.

  18. Understanding clinical immunological testing in alleged chemically induced environmental illnesses.

    PubMed

    Salvaggio, J E

    1996-08-01

    Some believe that an abnormal immunoregulatory response based on environmental damage to T cells is fundamental to the production of symptoms in patients with alleged "multiple chemical sensitivity" and/or "environmental illness." According to this theory stimulation of T cells or T cell phenotypic subsets by environmental chemicals results in release of cytokines that can effect appropriate target cells of multiple organ systems, resulting in a wide range of symptoms. This concept is reinforced by frequent media reporting of pollution incidents and environmental disasters plus continued isolated reports of immunologic abnormalities in patients with various forms of alleged environmental illness, multiple chemical sensitivities, or other related syndromes. These include reports of slight perturbations in quantity and function of immunoglobulins, complement and its components, B cells, natural killer cells, T cells, phenotypic T cell subsets, and helper suppressor T cell ratios. There are also reports of increased or decreased interleukin levels including IL-1 and IL-2 or their receptors (IL-2R) in these patients. Such assays are not infrequently performed even though there is no evidence for their diagnostic efficacy in these alleged conditions. It is reasonable, however, to anticipate that with the wide development of assays for many of the interleukins and their receptors, these assays may become important in the future diagnosis of many autoimmune, allergic, neoplastic, and infectious diseases. At this time, however, the induction of environmental illness or multiple chemical sensitivity by exposure to trace levels of environmental "immunotoxins" is unproven and remains a matter of speculation. The reproducibility of immunologic test abnormalities reported under these conditions has not been documented, and the data have often not been analyzed statistically. Appropriate controls also have not usually been employed, nor have control values been provided in many

  19. Simultaneous prediction of enzyme orthologs from chemical transformation patterns for de novo metabolic pathway reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Tabei, Yasuo; Yamanishi, Yoshihiro; Kotera, Masaaki

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: Metabolic pathways are an important class of molecular networks consisting of compounds, enzymes and their interactions. The understanding of global metabolic pathways is extremely important for various applications in ecology and pharmacology. However, large parts of metabolic pathways remain unknown, and most organism-specific pathways contain many missing enzymes. Results: In this study we propose a novel method to predict the enzyme orthologs that catalyze the putative reactions to facilitate the de novo reconstruction of metabolic pathways from metabolome-scale compound sets. The algorithm detects the chemical transformation patterns of substrate–product pairs using chemical graph alignments, and constructs a set of enzyme-specific classifiers to simultaneously predict all the enzyme orthologs that could catalyze the putative reactions of the substrate–product pairs in the joint learning framework. The originality of the method lies in its ability to make predictions for thousands of enzyme orthologs simultaneously, as well as its extraction of enzyme-specific chemical transformation patterns of substrate–product pairs. We demonstrate the usefulness of the proposed method by applying it to some ten thousands of metabolic compounds, and analyze the extracted chemical transformation patterns that provide insights into the characteristics and specificities of enzymes. The proposed method will open the door to both primary (central) and secondary metabolism in genomics research, increasing research productivity to tackle a wide variety of environmental and public health matters. Availability and Implementation: Contact: maskot@bio.titech.ac.jp PMID:27307627

  20. An environmental rationale for retention of endangered chemicals

    SciTech Connect

    Wuebbles, D.J.; Calm, J.M.

    1997-11-07

    Some of the chemicals being phased out to protect the stratospheric ozone layer offer offsetting benefits such as the potential to reduce global warming. This article discusses these two environmental issues together. Six scenarios were analyzed to assess the chlorine and bromine loading of HCFC-123, raising four major policy issues: using of single measure controls places excessive emphasis on the process rather than the objectives; the current Montreal Protocol, production is tantamount to emission, warrents reconsideration; phaseout of compounds based on GWPs will not resolve global warming concerns unless related emissions of greenhouse gases are also address, and careless elimination of options can be more harmful than beneficial. 8 refs., 2 figs.

  1. Disruption of Androgen Receptor Signaling in Males by Environmental Chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Luccio-Camelo, Doug C.; Prins, Gail S

    2011-01-01

    Androgen-disruptors are environmental chemicals in that interfere with the biosynthesis, metabolism or action of endogenous androgens resulting in a deflection from normal male developmental programming and reproductive tract growth and function. Since male sexual differentiation is entirely androgen-dependent, it is highly susceptible to androgen-disruptors. Animal models and epidemiological evidence link exposure to androgen disrupting chemicals with reduced sperm counts, increased infertility, testicular dysgenesis syndrome, and testicular and prostate cancers. Further, there appears to be increased sensitivity to these agents during critical developmental windows when male differentiation is at its peak. A variety of in vitro and in silico approaches have been used to identify broad classes of androgen disrupting molecules that include organochlorinated pesticides, industrial chemicals, and plasticizers with capacity to ligand the androgen receptor. The vast majority of these synthetic molecules act as anti-androgens. This review will highlight the evidence for androgen disrupting chemicals that act through interference with the androgen receptor, discussing specific compounds for which there is documented in vivo evidence for male reproductive tract perturbations. PMID:21515368

  2. Modelling physico-chemical properties of (benzo)triazoles, and screening for environmental partitioning.

    PubMed

    Bhhatarai, B; Gramatica, P

    2011-01-01

    (Benzo)triazoles are distributed throughout the environment, mainly in water compartments, because of their wide use in industry where they are employed in pharmaceutical, agricultural and deicing products. They are hazardous chemicals that adversely affect humans and other non-target species, and are on the list of substances of very high concern (SVHC) in the new European regulation of chemicals - REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemical substances). Thus there is a vital need for further investigations to understand the behavior of these compounds in biota and the environment. In such a scenario, physico-chemical properties like aqueous solubility, hydrophobicity, vapor pressure and melting point can be useful. However, the limited availability and the high cost of lab testing prevents the acquisition of necessary experimental data that industry must submit for the registration of these chemicals. In such cases a preliminary analysis can be made using Quantitative Structure-Property Relationships (QSPR) models. For such an analysis, we propose Multiple Linear Regression (MLR) models based on theoretical molecular descriptors selected by Genetic Algorithm (GA). Training and prediction sets were prepared a priori by splitting the available experimental data, which were then used to derive statistically robust and predictive (both internally and externally) models. These models, after verification of their structural applicability domain (AD), were used to predict the properties of a total of 351 compounds, including those in the REACH preregistration list. Finally, Principal Component Analysis was applied to the predictions to rank the environmental partitioning properties (relevant for leaching and volatility) of new and untested (benzo)triazoles within the AD of each model. Our study using this approach highlighted compounds dangerous for the aquatic compartment. Similar analyses using predictions obtained by the EPI Suite and

  3. Environmental signaling: from environmental estrogens to endocrine-disrupting chemicals and beyond.

    PubMed

    McLachlan, J A

    2016-07-01

    The landmark report (Herbst et al. 1971) linking prenatal treatment with a synthetic estrogen, diethylstilbestrol (DES), to cancer at puberty in women whose mothers took the drug while pregnant ushered in an era of research on delayed effects of such exposures on functional outcomes in offspring. An animal model developed in our laboratory at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences confirmed that DES was the carcinogen and exposure to DES caused, as well, functional alterations in the reproductive, endocrine, and immune systems of male and female mice treated in utero. DES was also being used in agriculture and we discovered, at the first meeting on Estrogens in the Environment in 1979 (Estrogens in the Environment, 1980), that many environmental contaminants were also estrogenic. Many laboratories sought to discern the basis for estrogenicity in environmental chemicals and to discover other hormonally active xenobiotics. Our laboratory elucidated how DES and other estrogenic compounds worked by altering differentiation through epigenetic gene imprinting, helping explain the transgenerational effects found in mice and humans. At the Wingspread Conference on the Human-Wildlife Connection in 1991 (Advances in Modern Environmental Toxicology, 1992), we learned that environmental disruption of the endocrine system occurred in many species and phyla, and the term endocrine disruption was introduced. Further findings of transgenerational effects of environmental agents that mimicked or blocked various reproductive hormones and the ubiquity of environmental signals, such as bisphenol A increased concern for human and ecological health. Scientists began to look at other endocrine system aspects, such as cardiovascular and immune function, and other nuclear receptors, with important observations regarding obesity and metabolism. Laboratories, such as ours, are now using stem cells to try to understand the mechanisms by which various environmental signals

  4. Developing predictions of in vivo developmental toxicity of ToxCast chemicals using mouse embryonic stem cells.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Developing predictions of in vivo developmental toxicity of ToxCast chemicals using mouse embryonic stem cells S. Hunter, M. Rosen, M. Hoopes, H. Nichols, S. Jeffay, K. Chandler1, Integrated Systems Toxicology Division, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Labor...

  5. Predictive spectroscopy and chemical imaging based on novel optical systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nelson, Matthew Paul

    1998-10-01

    This thesis describes two futuristic optical systems designed to surpass contemporary spectroscopic methods for predictive spectroscopy and chemical imaging. These systems are advantageous to current techniques in a number of ways including lower cost, enhanced portability, shorter analysis time, and improved S/N. First, a novel optical approach to predicting chemical and physical properties based on principal component analysis (PCA) is proposed and evaluated. A regression vector produced by PCA is designed into the structure of a set of paired optical filters. Light passing through the paired filters produces an analog detector signal directly proportional to the chemical/physical property for which the regression vector was designed. Second, a novel optical system is described which takes a single-shot approach to chemical imaging with high spectroscopic resolution using a dimension-reduction fiber-optic array. Images are focused onto a two- dimensional matrix of optical fibers which are drawn into a linear distal array with specific ordering. The distal end is imaged with a spectrograph equipped with an ICCD camera for spectral analysis. Software is used to extract the spatial/spectral information contained in the ICCD images and deconvolute them into wave length-specific reconstructed images or position-specific spectra which span a multi-wavelength space. This thesis includes a description of the fabrication of two dimension-reduction arrays as well as an evaluation of the system for spatial and spectral resolution, throughput, image brightness, resolving power, depth of focus, and channel cross-talk. PCA is performed on the images by treating rows of the ICCD images as spectra and plotting the scores of each PC as a function of reconstruction position. In addition, iterative target transformation factor analysis (ITTFA) is performed on the spectroscopic images to generate ``true'' chemical maps of samples. Univariate zero-order images, univariate first

  6. Activation of CAR and PXR by Dietary, Environmental and Occupational Chemicals Alters Drug Metabolism, Intermediary Metabolism, and Cell Proliferation

    PubMed Central

    Hernandez, J.P.; Mota, L.C.; Baldwin, W.S.

    2010-01-01

    The constitutive androstane receptor (CAR) and the pregnane × receptor (PXR) are activated by a variety of endogenous and exogenous ligands, such as steroid hormones, bile acids, pharmaceuticals, and environmental, dietary, and occupational chemicals. In turn, they induce phase I–III detoxification enzymes and transporters that help eliminate these chemicals. Because many of the chemicals that activate CAR and PXR are environmentally-relevant (dietary and anthropogenic), studies need to address whether these chemicals or mixtures of these chemicals may increase the susceptibility to adverse drug interactions. In addition, CAR and PXR are involved in hepatic proliferation, intermediary metabolism, and protection from cholestasis. Therefore, activation of CAR and PXR may have a wide variety of implications for personalized medicine through physiological effects on metabolism and cell proliferation; some beneficial and others adverse. Identifying the chemicals that activate these promiscuous nuclear receptors and understanding how these chemicals may act in concert will help us predict adverse drug reactions (ADRs), predict cholestasis and steatosis, and regulate intermediary metabolism. This review summarizes the available data on CAR and PXR, including the environmental chemicals that activate these receptors, the genes they control, and the physiological processes that are perturbed or depend on CAR and PXR action. This knowledge contributes to a foundation that will be necessary to discern interindividual differences in the downstream biological pathways regulated by these key nuclear receptors. PMID:20871735

  7. Development and Validation of Decision Forest Model for Estrogen Receptor Binding Prediction of Chemicals Using Large Data Sets.

    PubMed

    Ng, Hui Wen; Doughty, Stephen W; Luo, Heng; Ye, Hao; Ge, Weigong; Tong, Weida; Hong, Huixiao

    2015-12-21

    Some chemicals in the environment possess the potential to interact with the endocrine system in the human body. Multiple receptors are involved in the endocrine system; estrogen receptor α (ERα) plays very important roles in endocrine activity and is the most studied receptor. Understanding and predicting estrogenic activity of chemicals facilitates the evaluation of their endocrine activity. Hence, we have developed a decision forest classification model to predict chemical binding to ERα using a large training data set of 3308 chemicals obtained from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's Estrogenic Activity Database. We tested the model using cross validations and external data sets of 1641 chemicals obtained from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's ToxCast project. The model showed good performance in both internal (92% accuracy) and external validations (∼ 70-89% relative balanced accuracies), where the latter involved the validations of the model across different ER pathway-related assays in ToxCast. The important features that contribute to the prediction ability of the model were identified through informative descriptor analysis and were related to current knowledge of ER binding. Prediction confidence analysis revealed that the model had both high prediction confidence and accuracy for most predicted chemicals. The results demonstrated that the model constructed based on the large training data set is more accurate and robust for predicting ER binding of chemicals than the published models that have been developed using much smaller data sets. The model could be useful for the evaluation of ERα-mediated endocrine activity potential of environmental chemicals.

  8. The impact of environmental chemicals on wildlife vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Bernanke, Julia; Köhler, Heinz-R

    2009-01-01

    A plethora of papers have been published that address the affects of chemicals on wildlife vertebrates. Collectively, they support a connection between environmental pollution and effects on wildlife vertebrate populations; however, causal relationships between exposure, and reproduction or population structure effects have been established for only a few species. In a vast number of fish species, particularly in teleosts, it is accepted that EDCs affect the endocrine system of individuals and may alter sexual development and fertility. However, only few studies have demonstrated population-level consequences as a result of exposure to EDCs. The same applies to fish populations exposed to contaminants or contaminant mixtures with non-endocrine modes of action; few studies link EDCs directly to population affects. Amphibian populations are declining in many parts of the world. Although environmental chemicals have been shown to affect reproduction and development in single organism tests, the degree to which chemicals contribute to the decline of amphibians, either alone, or in concert with other factors (habitat loss, climate change, introduction of neozoa, UV-B irradiation, and direct exploitation) is still uncertain. Because reptilian endocrinology is so variable among species, EDC effects reported for individual species cannot easily be extrapolated to others. Nevertheless, for some species and locations (e.g., the Lake Popka alligators), there is considerable evidence that population declines are caused or triggered by chemical pollution. In birds, there is ample evidence for EDC effects on the reproductive system. In some bird species, effects can be linked to population declines (e.g., based on egg-shell thinning induced by DDT/DDE). In contrast, other bird species were shown to be rather insensitive to endocrine disruption. Oil spills, which also may exert endocrine effects, are usually regarded to cause only transient bird population effects, although long

  9. Predicting regional lung deposition of environmental tobacco smoke particles

    SciTech Connect

    Nazaroff, W.W.; Hung, W.Y.; Sasse, A.G.B.M.; Gadgil, A.J.

    1993-10-01

    Inhalation exposure of environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) particles may increase health risks, but only to the extent that the particles deposit in the respiratory tract. We describe a technique to predict regional lung deposition of environmental tobacco smoke particles. Interpretation of particle size distribution measurements after cigarette combustion by a smoking machine in a test room yields an effective emissions profile. An aerosol dynamics model is used to predict indoor particle concentrations resulting from a specified combination of smoking frequency and building factors. By utilizing a lung deposition model, the rate of ETS mass accumulation in human lungs is then determined as a function of particle size and lung airway generation. Considering emissions of sidestream smoke only, residential exposures of nonsmokers to ETS are predicted to cause rates of total respiratory tract particle deposition in the range of 0.4-0.7 {mu}g/day per kg of body weight for light smoking in a well-ventilated residence and 8-13 {mu}g/day per kg for moderately heavy smoking in a poorly ventilated residence. Emissions of sidestream plus mainstream smoke lead to predicted deposition rates about a factor of 4 higher. This technique should be useful for evaluating health risks and control techniques associated with exposure to ETS particles. 36 refs., 6 figs., 3 tabs.

  10. Predicting Chemical Environments of Bacteria from Receptor Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Neumann, Silke; Sourjik, Victor; Endres, Robert G.

    2014-01-01

    Sensory systems have evolved to respond to input stimuli of certain statistical properties, and to reliably transmit this information through biochemical pathways. Hence, for an experimentally well-characterized sensory system, one ought to be able to extract valuable information about the statistics of the stimuli. Based on dose-response curves from in vivo fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) experiments of the bacterial chemotaxis sensory system, we predict the chemical gradients chemotactic Escherichia coli cells typically encounter in their natural environment. To predict average gradients cells experience, we revaluate the phenomenological Weber's law and its generalizations to the Weber-Fechner law and fold-change detection. To obtain full distributions of gradients we use information theory and simulations, considering limitations of information transmission from both cell-external and internal noise. We identify broad distributions of exponential gradients, which lead to log-normal stimuli and maximal drift velocity. Our results thus provide a first step towards deciphering the chemical nature of complex, experimentally inaccessible cellular microenvironments, such as the human intestine. PMID:25340783

  11. Biochar physico-chemical properties as affected by environmental exposure.

    PubMed

    Sorrenti, Giovambattista; Masiello, Caroline A; Dugan, Brandon; Toselli, Moreno

    2016-09-01

    To best use biochar as a sustainable soil management and carbon (C) sequestration technique, we must understand the effect of environmental exposure on its physical and chemical properties because they likely vary with time. These properties play an important role in biochar's environmental behavior and delivery of ecosystem services. We measured biochar before amendment and four years after amendment to a commercial nectarine orchard at rates of 5, 15 and 30tha(-1). We combined two pycnometry techniques to measure skeletal (ρs) and envelope (ρe) density and to estimate the total pore volume of biochar particles. We also examined imbibition, which can provide information about soil hydraulic conductivity. Finally, we investigated the chemical properties, surface, inner layers atomic composition and C1s bonding state of biochar fragments through X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). Ageing increased biochar skeletal density and reduced the water imbibition rate within fragments as a consequence of partial pore clogging. However, porosity and the volume of water stored in particles remained unchanged. Exposure reduced biochar pH, EC, and total C, but enhanced total N, nitrate-N, and ammonium-N. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analyses showed an increase of O, Si, N, Na, Al, Ca, Mn, and Fe surface (0-5nm) atomic composition (at%) and a reduction of C and K in aged particles, confirming the interactions of biochar with soil inorganic and organic phases. Oxidation of aged biochar fragments occurred mainly in the particle surface, and progressively decreased down to 75nm. Biochar surface chemistry changes included the development of carbonyl and carboxylate functional groups, again mainly on the particle surface. However, changes were noticeable down to 75nm, while no significant changes were measured in the deepest layer, up to 110nm. Results show unequivocal shifts in biochar physical and chemical properties/characteristics over short (~years) timescales.

  12. [Development of Chemical Exposure Prediction Model for Aerobic Sewage Treatment Plant for Biochemical Wastewaters].

    PubMed

    Zhou, Lin-jun; Liu, Ji-ning; Shi, Li-li; Feng, Jie; Xu, Yan-hua

    2016-01-15

    Sewage treatment plant (STP) is a key transfer station for chemicals distributed into different environment compartment, and hence models of exposure prediction play a crucial role in the environmental risk assessment and pollution prevention of chemicals. A mass balance model namely Chinese Sewage treatment plant (C-STP(O)) was developed to predict the fate and exposure of chemicals in a conventional sewage treatment plant. The model was expressed as 9 mixed boxes by compartment of air, water, suspended solids, and settled solids. It was based on the minimum input data required on the notification in new chemicals, such as molecular weight, absorption coefficient, vapor pressure, water solubility, ready or inherent biodegradability. The environment conditions ( Temperature = 283 K, wind speed = 2 m x s(-1)) and the classic STP scenario parameters of China, especially the scenario parameters of water quality and sludge properties were adopted in C-STP( 0) model to reflect Chinese characteristics, these parameters were sewage flow of 35 000 m3 x d(-1), influent BOD5 of 0.15 g x L(-1), influent SS of 0.2 kg x m(-3), effluent SS of 0.02 kg x m(-3), BOD5 removal in aerator of 90% sludge density of 1.6 kg x L(3) and organic carbon content of 0.18-0.19. It adopted the fugacity express for mechanism of linear absorption, first-order degradation, Whitman two resistances. An overall interphase transfer constant which was the sum of surface volatilization and stripping was used to assess the volatilization in aerator. The most important and uncertain input value was the biodegradation rate constant, and determination of which required a tier test strategy from ready or inherent biodegradability data to simulate test in STP. An extrapolated criterion of US EPA to derive biodegradation rate constant using the results of ready and inherent biodegradability was compared with that of EU and was recommended. C-STP ( 0 ) was valid to predict the relative emission of volatilization

  13. Evaluation of artificial intelligence based models for chemical biodegradability prediction.

    PubMed

    Baker, James R; Gamberger, Dragan; Mihelcic, James R; Sabljić, Aleksandar

    2004-12-31

    This study presents a review of biodegradability modeling efforts including a detailed assessment of two models developed using an artificial intelligence based methodology. Validation results for these models using an independent, quality reviewed database, demonstrate that the models perform well when compared to another commonly used biodegradability model, against the same data. The ability of models induced by an artificial intelligence methodology to accommodate complex interactions in detailed systems, and the demonstrated reliability of the approach evaluated by this study, indicate that the methodology may have application in broadening the scope of biodegradability models. Given adequate data for biodegradability of chemicals under environmental conditions, this may allow for the development of future models that include such things as surface interface impacts on biodegradability for example.

  14. Fate of sessile droplet chemical agents in environmental substrates in the presence of physiochemical processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Navaz, H. K.; Dang, A. L.; Atkinson, T.; Zand, A.; Nowakowski, A.; Kamensky, K.

    2014-05-01

    A general-purpose multi-phase and multi-component computer model capable of solving the complex problems encountered in the agent substrate interaction is developed. The model solves the transient and time-accurate mass and momentum governing equations in a three dimensional space. The provisions for considering all the inter-phase activities (solidification, evaporation, condensation, etc.) are included in the model. The chemical reactions among all phases are allowed and the products of the existing chemical reactions in all three phases are possible. The impact of chemical reaction products on the transport properties in porous media such as porosity, capillary pressure, and permeability is considered. Numerous validations for simulants, agents, and pesticides with laboratory and open air data are presented. Results for chemical reactions in the presence of pre-existing water in porous materials such as moisture, or separated agent and water droplets on porous substrates are presented. The model will greatly enhance the capabilities in predicting the level of threat after any chemical such as Toxic Industrial Chemicals (TICs) and Toxic Industrial Materials (TIMs) release on environmental substrates. The model's generality makes it suitable for both defense and pharmaceutical applications.

  15. CHEMICAL HAZARD EVALUATION FOR MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES: A METHOD FOR RANKING AND SCORING CHEMICALS BY POTENTIAL HUMAN HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Between 60,000 and 100,000 of the over than 8,000,000 chemicals listed by the Chemical Abstracts Services Registry are commercially produced and are potential environmental pollutants. Risk-based evaluation for these chemicals is often required to evaluate the potential impacts...

  16. Andra Environmental Specimen Bank: archiving the environmental chemical quality for long-term monitoring.

    PubMed

    Leclerc, Elisabeth; d'Arbaumont, Maëlle; Verron, Jean-Patrick; Goldstein, Céline; Cesar, Frédérique; Dewonck, Sarah

    2015-02-01

    Andra Environmental Specimen Bank (ESB) was established in 2010 as a part of the Perennial Observatory of the Environment (OPE), ongoing Long-Term Environmental Research Monitoring and Testing System located next to the Underground Research Laboratory (URL) at Bure, Meuse/Haute-Marne, France. The URL is used to study the deep geological disposal of high and intermediate level radioactive waste. Andra ESB is designed to archive during at least 100 years samples collected to define the initial state of environmental quality of the local area before the construction of industrial facilities and to ensure the traceability of long-term series of samples collected by the OPE ( http://www.andra.fr/ope ), using safe long-term conservation practices. Samples archived in the bank include some local food chain products (milk, cheese, honey, cereals, grass, cherry plum…) and specimen usually archived internationally to monitor the environmental quality (soil, sediment, water, fish, tree leaves, wild life, etc.). Regarding the different samples and analytical issues, three conservation modalities and facilities were designed: dry conservation under controlled temperature and humidity, cryopreservation in liquid nitrogen (LN2) vapor phase freezers (-150 °C) and in deep-freezing at -80 °C for temporary storage and raw samples before preparation. Andra ESB is equipped with a sample preparation clean room, certified ISO Class 5, dedicated to cryopreservation. This paper describes this first French experiment of long-term chemical quality monitoring and samples cryopreservation of different ecosystems and environmental compartments.

  17. Animals as sentinels of human health hazards of environmental chemicals.

    PubMed Central

    van der Schalie, W H; Gardner, H S; Bantle, J A; De Rosa, C T; Finch, R A; Reif, J S; Reuter, R H; Backer, L C; Burger, J; Folmar, L C; Stokes, W S

    1999-01-01

    A workshop titled "Using Sentinel Species Data to Address the Potential Human Health Effects of Chemicals in the Environment," sponsored by the U.S. Army Center for Environmental Health Research, the National Center for Environmental Assessment of the EPA, and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, was held to consider the use of sentinel and surrogate animal species data for evaluating the potential human health effects of chemicals in the environment. The workshop took a broad view of the sentinel species concept, and included mammalian and nonmammalian species, companion animals, food animals, fish, amphibians, and other wildlife. Sentinel species data included observations of wild animals in field situations as well as experimental animal data. Workshop participants identified potential applications for sentinel species data derived from monitoring programs or serendipitous observations and explored the potential use of such information in human health hazard and risk assessments and for evaluating causes or mechanisms of effect. Although it is unlikely that sentinel species data will be used as the sole determinative factor in evaluating human health concerns, such data can be useful as for additional weight of evidence in a risk assessment, for providing early warning of situations requiring further study, or for monitoring the course of remedial activities. Attention was given to the factors impeding the application of sentinel species approaches and their acceptance in the scientific and regulatory communities. Workshop participants identified a number of critical research needs and opportunities for interagency collaboration that could help advance the use of sentinel species approaches. PMID:10090711

  18. Shuttle sonic boom - Technology and predictions. [environmental impact

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holloway, P. F.; Wilhold, G. A.; Jones, J. H.; Garcia, F., Jr.; Hicks, R. M.

    1973-01-01

    Because the shuttle differs significantly in both geometric and operational characteristics from conventional supersonic aircraft, estimation of sonic boom characteristics required a new technology base. The prediction procedures thus developed are reviewed. Flight measurements obtained for both the ascent and entry phases of the Apollo 15 and 16 and for the ascent phase only of the Apollo 17 missions are presented which verify the techniques established for application to shuttle. Results of extensive analysis of the sonic boom overpressure characteristics completed to date are presented which indicate that this factor of the shuttle's environmental impact is predictable, localized, of short duration and acceptable. Efforts are continuing to define the shuttle sonic boom characteristics to a fine level of detail based on the final system design.

  19. Carcinogenicity prediction of noncongeneric chemicals by a support vector machine.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Min; Nie, Xianglei; Yan, Aixia; Yuan, Qipeng

    2013-05-20

    The ability to identify carcinogenic compounds is of fundamental importance to the safe application of chemicals. In this study, we generated an array of in silico models allowing the classification of compounds into carcinogenic and noncarcinogenic agents based on a data set of 852 noncongeneric chemicals collected from the Carcinogenic Potency Database (CPDBAS). Twenty-four molecular descriptors were selected by Pearson correlation, F-score, and stepwise regression analysis. These descriptors cover a range of physicochemical properties, including electrophilicity, geometry, molecular weight, size, and solubility. The descriptor mutagenic showed the highest correlation coefficient with carcinogenicity. On the basis of these descriptors, a support vector machine-based (SVM) classification model was developed and fine-tuned by a 10-fold cross-validation approach. Both the SVM model (Model A1) and the best model from the 10-fold cross-validation (Model B3) runs gave good results on the test set with prediction accuracy over 80%, sensitivity over 76%, and specificity over 82%. In addition, extended connectivity fingerprints (ECFPs) and the Toxtree software were used to analyze the functional groups and substructures linked to carcinogenicity. It was found that the results of both methods are in good agreement.

  20. An Online Prediction Platform to Support the Environmental ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Historical QSAR models are currently utilized across a broad range of applications within the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). These models predict basic physicochemical properties (e.g., logP, aqueous solubility, vapor pressure), which are then incorporated into exposure, fate and transport models. Whereas the classical manner of publishing results in peer-reviewed journals remains appropriate, there are substantial benefits to be gained by providing enhanced, open access to the training data sets and resulting models. Benefits include improved transparency, more flexibility to expand training sets and improve model algorithms, and greater ability to independently characterize model performance both globally and in local areas of chemistry. We have developed a web-based prediction platform that uses open-source descriptors and modeling algorithms, employs modern cheminformatics technologies, and is tailored for ease of use by the toxicology and environmental regulatory community. This tool also provides web-services to meet both EPA’s projects and the modeling community at-large. The platform hosts models developed within EPA’s National Center for Computational Toxicology, as well as those developed by other EPA scientists and the outside scientific community. Recognizing that there are other on-line QSAR model platforms currently available which have additional capabilities, we connect to such services, where possible, to produce an integrated

  1. Environmental sensing and response genes in Cnidaria: the chemical defensome in the sea anemone Nematostella vectensis

    PubMed Central

    Goldstone, J.V.

    2010-01-01

    The starlet sea anemone Nematostella vectensis has been recently established as a new model system for the study of the evolution of developmental processes, as cnidaria occupy a key evolutionary position at the base of the bilateria. Cnidaria play important roles in estuarine and reef communities, but are exposed to many environmental stressors. Here I describe the genetic components of a ‘chemical defensome’ in the genome of N. vectensis, and review cnidarian molecular toxicology. Gene families that defend against chemical stressors and the transcription factors that regulate these genes have been termed a ‘chemical defensome,’ and include the cytochromes P450 and other oxidases, various conjugating enyzymes, the ATP-dependent efflux transporters, oxidative detoxification proteins, as well as various transcription factors. These genes account for about 1% (266/27200) of the predicted genes in the sea anemone genome, similar to the proportion observed in tunicates and humans, but lower than that observed in sea urchins. While there are comparable numbers of stress-response genes, the stress sensor genes appear to be reduced in N. vectensis relative to many model protostomes and deuterostomes. Cnidarian toxicology is understudied, especially given the important ecological roles of many cnidarian species. New genomic resources should stimulate the study of chemical stress sensing and response mechanisms in cnidaria, and allow us to further illuminate the evolution of chemical defense gene networks. PMID:18956243

  2. Environmental Impact Research Program: Environmental Impact Assessment in Coastal Habitats: An Evaluation of Predictions

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1990-09-01

    PAGE COUNT Final report FROM _ TO _ September 1990 14 16. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTATION Available from National Technical Information Service, 5285 Port Royal...EVALUATION OF PREDICTIONS PART I: INTRODUCTION Background 1. Since implementation of the National Environmental Policy Act in 1969, the US Army Corps of...and hurricane wave protection, Carolina, beach 1981 SP and vicinity, New Hanover County, North Carolina Broad Creek, Beaufort County, North Carolina

  3. Use of Geochemical Indices in Environmental Assessment of Soil; the Predictable and the Predictably Unpredictable

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mikkonen, Hannah; Clarke, Bradley; van de Graaff, Robert; Reichman, Suzie

    2016-04-01

    Geochemical correlations between common contaminants (Pb, Ni, As, Cr, Co and Zn) and earth metals, Fe and Mn, have been recommended as empirical tools to estimate "background" concentrations of metals in soil. A limited number of studies indicate that geochemical ratios between Pb, Ni, As, Cr, Co, V and Zn with scavenger metals Fe or Mn, are consistent between soils collected from different regions (Hamon et al. 2004, Myers and Thorbjornsen 2004). These studies have resulted in the incorporation of geochemical indices into Australian guidance, for derivation of ecological investigation levels for Ni, Cr, Cu and Zn. However, little research has been undertaken to assess the variation of geochemical patterns between soils derived from different parent materials or different weathering environments. A survey of background soils derived from four different parent materials, across Victoria, Australia, was undertaken, comprising collection of samples (n=640) from the surface (0 to 0.1 m) and sub-surface (0.3 to 0.6 m). Soil samples were collected from urban and rural areas of low disturbance, away from point sources of contamination. Samples were analysed for metals/metalloids and soil physical and chemical properties. Statistical review of results included regression and multivariate analysis. The results of the soil survey were compared against geochemical relationships reported within Australia and internationally. Compilation of results from this study and international data sets, indicates that geochemical relationships for metals Cr and V (in the format of log[Cr] = alog[Fe] +c) are predictable, not only between soils derived from different parent materials, but also between soils of different continents. Conversely, relationships between Zn and Fe, Pb and Fe, Cu and Fe, Co and Mn are variable, particularly within soils derived from alluvial sediments, which may have undergone periods of reducing conditions, resulting in dissociation from metal oxides. Broad

  4. Predicting effects of environmental change on a migratory herbivore

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stillman, R A; Wood, K A; Gilkerson, Whelan; Elkinton, E; Black, J. M.; Ward, David H.; Petrie, M.

    2015-01-01

    for which birds were disturbed. We discuss the consequences of these predictions for Black Brant conservation. A wide range of migratory species responses are expected in response to environmental change. Process-based models are potential tools to predict such responses and understand the mechanisms which underpin them.

  5. Revolution In Toxicity Testing And Risk Prediction For Chemicals In The Environment (ASA)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Addressing safety aspects of drugs and environmental chemicals relies extensively on animal testing; however, the quantity of chemicals needing assessment and challenges of species extrapolation require alternative approaches to traditional animal studies. Newer in vitro and in s...

  6. Predicting Toxic and Therapeutic Mechanisms of the ToxCast Chemical Library by Phenotypic Screening (SOT)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Addressing safety aspects of drugs and environmental chemicals relies extensively on animal testing. However the quantity of chemicals needing assessment and challenges of species extrapolation require development of alternative approaches. Using 8 primary human cell systems (Bio...

  7. Using ToxCast in vitro Assays in the Hierarchical Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship (QSAR) Modeling for Predicting in vivo Toxicity of Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    The goal of chemical toxicology research is utilizing short term bioassays and/or robust computational methods to predict in vivo toxicity endpoints for chemicals. The ToxCast program established at the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is addressing this goal by using ca....

  8. Chemometric Methods and Theoretical Molecular Descriptors in Predictive QSAR Modeling of the Environmental Behavior of Organic Pollutants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gramatica, Paola

    This chapter surveys the QSAR modeling approaches (developed by the author's research group) for the validated prediction of environmental properties of organic pollutants. Various chemometric methods, based on different theoretical molecular descriptors, have been applied: explorative techniques (such as PCA for ranking, SOM for similarity analysis), modeling approaches by multiple-linear regression (MLR, in particular OLS), and classification methods (mainly k-NN, CART, CP-ANN). The focus of this review is on the main topics of environmental chemistry and ecotoxicology, related to the physico-chemical properties, the reactivity, and biological activity of chemicals of high environmental concern. Thus, the review deals with atmospheric degradation reactions of VOCs by tropospheric oxidants, persistence and long-range transport of POPs, sorption behavior of pesticides (Koc and leaching), bioconcentration, toxicity (acute aquatic toxicity, mutagenicity of PAHs, estrogen binding activity for endocrine disruptors compounds (EDCs)), and finally persistent bioaccumulative and toxic (PBT) behavior for the screening and prioritization of organic pollutants. Common to all the proposed models is the attention paid to model validation for predictive ability (not only internal, but also external for chemicals not participating in the model development) and checking of the chemical domain of applicability. Adherence to such a policy, requested also by the OECD principles, ensures the production of reliable predicted data, useful also in the new European regulation of chemicals, REACH.

  9. Toward seamless weather-climate and environmental prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brunet, Gilbert

    2016-04-01

    Over the last decade or so, predicting the weather, climate and atmospheric composition has emerged as one of the most important areas of scientific endeavor. This is partly because the remarkable increase in skill of current weather forecasts has made society more and more dependent on them day to day for a whole range of decision making. And it is partly because climate change is now widely accepted and the realization is growing rapidly that it will affect every person in the world profoundly, either directly or indirectly. One of the important endeavors of our societies is to remain at the cutting-edge of modelling and predicting the evolution of the fully coupled environmental system: atmosphere (weather and composition), oceans, land surface (physical and biological), and cryosphere. This effort will provide an increasingly accurate and reliable service across all the socio-economic sectors that are vulnerable to the effects of adverse weather and climatic conditions, whether now or in the future. This emerging challenge was at the center of the World Weather Open Science Conference (Montreal, 2014).The outcomes of the conference are described in the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) book: Seamless Prediction of the Earth System: from Minutes to Months, (G. Brunet, S. Jones, P. Ruti Eds., WMO-No. 1156, 2015). It is freely available on line at the WMO website. We will discuss some of the outcomes of the conference for the WMO World Weather Research Programme (WWRP) and Global Atmospheric Watch (GAW) long term goals and provide examples of seamless modelling and prediction across a range of timescales at convective and sub-kilometer scales for regional coupled forecasting applications at Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC).

  10. Fast and accurate predictions of covalent bonds in chemical space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, K. Y. Samuel; Fias, Stijn; Ramakrishnan, Raghunathan; von Lilienfeld, O. Anatole

    2016-05-01

    We assess the predictive accuracy of perturbation theory based estimates of changes in covalent bonding due to linear alchemical interpolations among molecules. We have investigated σ bonding to hydrogen, as well as σ and π bonding between main-group elements, occurring in small sets of iso-valence-electronic molecules with elements drawn from second to fourth rows in the p-block of the periodic table. Numerical evidence suggests that first order Taylor expansions of covalent bonding potentials can achieve high accuracy if (i) the alchemical interpolation is vertical (fixed geometry), (ii) it involves elements from the third and fourth rows of the periodic table, and (iii) an optimal reference geometry is used. This leads to near linear changes in the bonding potential, resulting in analytical predictions with chemical accuracy (˜1 kcal/mol). Second order estimates deteriorate the prediction. If initial and final molecules differ not only in composition but also in geometry, all estimates become substantially worse, with second order being slightly more accurate than first order. The independent particle approximation based second order perturbation theory performs poorly when compared to the coupled perturbed or finite difference approach. Taylor series expansions up to fourth order of the potential energy curve of highly symmetric systems indicate a finite radius of convergence, as illustrated for the alchemical stretching of H 2+ . Results are presented for (i) covalent bonds to hydrogen in 12 molecules with 8 valence electrons (CH4, NH3, H2O, HF, SiH4, PH3, H2S, HCl, GeH4, AsH3, H2Se, HBr); (ii) main-group single bonds in 9 molecules with 14 valence electrons (CH3F, CH3Cl, CH3Br, SiH3F, SiH3Cl, SiH3Br, GeH3F, GeH3Cl, GeH3Br); (iii) main-group double bonds in 9 molecules with 12 valence electrons (CH2O, CH2S, CH2Se, SiH2O, SiH2S, SiH2Se, GeH2O, GeH2S, GeH2Se); (iv) main-group triple bonds in 9 molecules with 10 valence electrons (HCN, HCP, HCAs, HSiN, HSi

  11. Fast and accurate predictions of covalent bonds in chemical space.

    PubMed

    Chang, K Y Samuel; Fias, Stijn; Ramakrishnan, Raghunathan; von Lilienfeld, O Anatole

    2016-05-07

    We assess the predictive accuracy of perturbation theory based estimates of changes in covalent bonding due to linear alchemical interpolations among molecules. We have investigated σ bonding to hydrogen, as well as σ and π bonding between main-group elements, occurring in small sets of iso-valence-electronic molecules with elements drawn from second to fourth rows in the p-block of the periodic table. Numerical evidence suggests that first order Taylor expansions of covalent bonding potentials can achieve high accuracy if (i) the alchemical interpolation is vertical (fixed geometry), (ii) it involves elements from the third and fourth rows of the periodic table, and (iii) an optimal reference geometry is used. This leads to near linear changes in the bonding potential, resulting in analytical predictions with chemical accuracy (∼1 kcal/mol). Second order estimates deteriorate the prediction. If initial and final molecules differ not only in composition but also in geometry, all estimates become substantially worse, with second order being slightly more accurate than first order. The independent particle approximation based second order perturbation theory performs poorly when compared to the coupled perturbed or finite difference approach. Taylor series expansions up to fourth order of the potential energy curve of highly symmetric systems indicate a finite radius of convergence, as illustrated for the alchemical stretching of H2 (+). Results are presented for (i) covalent bonds to hydrogen in 12 molecules with 8 valence electrons (CH4, NH3, H2O, HF, SiH4, PH3, H2S, HCl, GeH4, AsH3, H2Se, HBr); (ii) main-group single bonds in 9 molecules with 14 valence electrons (CH3F, CH3Cl, CH3Br, SiH3F, SiH3Cl, SiH3Br, GeH3F, GeH3Cl, GeH3Br); (iii) main-group double bonds in 9 molecules with 12 valence electrons (CH2O, CH2S, CH2Se, SiH2O, SiH2S, SiH2Se, GeH2O, GeH2S, GeH2Se); (iv) main-group triple bonds in 9 molecules with 10 valence electrons (HCN, HCP, HCAs, HSiN, HSi

  12. Chemical approaches to the study of environmental diseases

    SciTech Connect

    Phillips, N.J.

    1986-01-01

    Cause-and-effect relationships are difficult to establish in chronic diseases which take years to develop. Awareness of the health hazards posed by long-term, low-level exposure to toxins has focused attention on causative environmental agents. Studies discussed here identified chemical factors potentially involved in the induction of chronic diseases. The novel spiroketal mycotoxins talaromycins A and B (C/sub 12/H/sub 22/O/sub 4/) were isolated from Talaromyces stipitatus, a fungus associated with fermenting silage. /sup 1/H NMR 2D COSY spectroscopy was used to distinguish isolated spin systems in the diastereomeric mixture and to facilitate the complete proton assignments of the pure isomers. Dipolar couplings between protons on different rings of the bicyclic system, observed by NOE difference and 2D Exchange spectroscopy, established the relative configuration of the ketal center. Extracts of the fungus Fusarium equiseti isolated from the home of genetically unrelated leukemia patients showed toxicity to mammals and immunosuppressive activity. Chronic byssinosis may result from accumulation of toxins in the lungs of long-term cotton mill workers.

  13. Prioritizing Environmental Chemicals for Obesity and Diabetes Outcomes Research: A Screening Approach Using ToxCast™ High-Throughput Data

    PubMed Central

    Auerbach, Scott; Filer, Dayne; Reif, David; Walker, Vickie; Holloway, Alison C.; Schlezinger, Jennifer; Srinivasan, Supriya; Svoboda, Daniel; Judson, Richard; Bucher, John R.; Thayer, Kristina A.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Diabetes and obesity are major threats to public health in the United States and abroad. Understanding the role that chemicals in our environment play in the development of these conditions is an emerging issue in environmental health, although identifying and prioritizing chemicals for testing beyond those already implicated in the literature is challenging. This review is intended to help researchers generate hypotheses about chemicals that may contribute to diabetes and to obesity-related health outcomes by summarizing relevant findings from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ToxCast™ high-throughput screening (HTS) program. Objectives: Our aim was to develop new hypotheses around environmental chemicals of potential interest for diabetes- or obesity-related outcomes using high-throughput screening data. Methods: We identified ToxCast™ assay targets relevant to several biological processes related to diabetes and obesity (insulin sensitivity in peripheral tissue, pancreatic islet and β cell function, adipocyte differentiation, and feeding behavior) and presented chemical screening data against those assay targets to identify chemicals of potential interest. Discussion: The results of this screening-level analysis suggest that the spectrum of environmental chemicals to consider in research related to diabetes and obesity is much broader than indicated by research papers and reviews published in the peer-reviewed literature. Testing hypotheses based on ToxCast™ data will also help assess the predictive utility of this HTS platform. Conclusions: More research is required to put these screening-level analyses into context, but the information presented in this review should facilitate the development of new hypotheses. Citation: Auerbach S, Filer D, Reif D, Walker V, Holloway AC, Schlezinger J, Srinivasan S, Svoboda D, Judson R, Bucher JR, Thayer KA. 2016. Prioritizing environmental chemicals for obesity and diabetes outcomes research

  14. PREDICTING TOXICOLOGICAL ENDPOINTS OF CHEMICALS USING QUANTITATIVE STRUCTURE-ACTIVITY RELATIONSHIPS (QSARS)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARs) are being developed to predict the toxicological endpoints for untested chemicals similar in structure to chemicals that have known experimental toxicological data. Based on a very large number of predetermined descriptors, a...

  15. STRUCTURE-ACTIVITY RELATIONSHIP STUIDES AND THEIR ROLE IN PREDICTING AND INVESTIGATING CHEMICAL TOXICITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Structure-Activity Relationship Studies and their Role in Predicting and Investigating Chemical Toxicity

    Structure-activity relationships (SAR) represent attempts to generalize chemical information relative to biological activity for the twin purposes of generating insigh...

  16. AI AND SAR APPROACHES FOR PREDICTING CHEMICAL CARCINOGENICITY: SURVEY AND STATUS REPORT

    EPA Science Inventory

    A wide variety of artificial intelligence (AI) and structure-activity relationship (SAR approaches have been applied to tackling the general problem of predicting rodent chemical carcinogenicity. Given the diversity of chemical structures and mechanisms relative to this endpoin...

  17. About Using Predictive Models and Tools To Assess Chemicals under TSCA

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    As part of EPA's effort to promote chemical safety, OPPT provides public access to predictive models and tools which can help inform the public on the hazards and risks of substances and improve chemical management decisions.

  18. Model to predict aerial dispersal of bacteria during environmental release.

    PubMed Central

    Knudsen, G R

    1989-01-01

    Risk assessment for genetically engineered bacteria sprayed onto crops includes determination of off-site dispersal and deposition. The ability to predict microbial dispersal patterns is essential to characterize the uncertainty (risk) associated with environmental release of recombinant organisms. Toward this end, a particle dispersal model was developed to predict recovery of bacteria on fallout plates at various distances and directions about a test site. The microcomputer simulation incorporates particle size distribution, wind speed and direction, turbulence, evaporation, sedimentation, and mortality, with a time step of 0.5 s. The model was tested against data reported from three field applications of nonrecombinant bacteria and two applications of recombinant bacteria. Simulated dispersal of 10(5) particles was compared with reported deposition measurements. The model may be useful in defining appropriate populations of organisms for release, methods of release or application, characteristics of a release site that influence containment or dispersal, and in developing an appropriate sampling methodology for monitoring the dispersal of organisms such as genetically engineered bacteria. PMID:2604402

  19. Prediction and Prevention of Chemical Reaction Hazards: Learning by Simulation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shacham, Mordechai; Brauner, Neima; Cutlip, Michael B.

    2001-01-01

    Points out that chemical hazards are the major cause of accidents in chemical industry and describes a safety teaching approach using a simulation. Explains a problem statement on exothermic liquid-phase reactions. (YDS)

  20. In silico prediction of toxicity of non-congeneric industrial chemicals using ensemble learning based modeling approaches

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, Kunwar P. Gupta, Shikha

    2014-03-15

    Ensemble learning approach based decision treeboost (DTB) and decision tree forest (DTF) models are introduced in order to establish quantitative structure–toxicity relationship (QSTR) for the prediction of toxicity of 1450 diverse chemicals. Eight non-quantum mechanical molecular descriptors were derived. Structural diversity of the chemicals was evaluated using Tanimoto similarity index. Stochastic gradient boosting and bagging algorithms supplemented DTB and DTF models were constructed for classification and function optimization problems using the toxicity end-point in T. pyriformis. Special attention was drawn to prediction ability and robustness of the models, investigated both in external and 10-fold cross validation processes. In complete data, optimal DTB and DTF models rendered accuracies of 98.90%, 98.83% in two-category and 98.14%, 98.14% in four-category toxicity classifications. Both the models further yielded classification accuracies of 100% in external toxicity data of T. pyriformis. The constructed regression models (DTB and DTF) using five descriptors yielded correlation coefficients (R{sup 2}) of 0.945, 0.944 between the measured and predicted toxicities with mean squared errors (MSEs) of 0.059, and 0.064 in complete T. pyriformis data. The T. pyriformis regression models (DTB and DTF) applied to the external toxicity data sets yielded R{sup 2} and MSE values of 0.637, 0.655; 0.534, 0.507 (marine bacteria) and 0.741, 0.691; 0.155, 0.173 (algae). The results suggest for wide applicability of the inter-species models in predicting toxicity of new chemicals for regulatory purposes. These approaches provide useful strategy and robust tools in the screening of ecotoxicological risk or environmental hazard potential of chemicals. - Graphical abstract: Importance of input variables in DTB and DTF classification models for (a) two-category, and (b) four-category toxicity intervals in T. pyriformis data. Generalization and predictive abilities of the

  1. In Vitro Screening of Environmental Chemicals for Targeted Testing Prioritization: The ToxCast Project

    EPA Science Inventory

    Chemical toxicity testing is being transformed by advances in biology and computer modeling, concerns over animal use, and the thousands of environmental chemicals lacking toxicity data. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ToxCast program aims to address these concerns by ...

  2. Environmental chemicals and breast cancer risk--a structural chemistry perspective.

    PubMed

    Weyandt, Jamie; Ellsworth, Rachel E; Hooke, Jeffrey A; Shriver, Craig D; Ellsworth, Darrell L

    2008-01-01

    In modern industrialized societies, people are exposed to thousands of naturally occurring and synthetic chemicals throughout their lifetime. Although certain occupational chemicals are known to be carcinogenic in humans, it has been difficult to definitively determine the adverse health effects of many environmental pollutants due to their tremendous chemical diversity and absence of a consistent structural motif. Many environmental chemicals are metabolized in the body to reactive intermediates that readily react with DNA to form modified bases known as adducts, while other compounds mimic the biological function of estrogen. Because environmental chemicals tend to accumulate in human tissues and have carcinogenic and/or estrogenic properties, there is heightened interest in determining whether environmental chemicals increase risk for endocrine-related cancers, including breast cancer. Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide, but established risk factors account for a relatively small proportion of cases and causative factors remain ambiguous and poorly defined. In this review, we outline the structural chemistry of environmental contaminants, describe mechanisms of carcinogenesis and molecular pathways through which these chemicals may exert detrimental health effects, review current knowledge of relationships between chemicals and breast cancer risk, and highlight future directions for research on environmental contributions to breast cancer. Improved understanding of the relationship between environmental chemicals and breast cancer will help to educate the general public about real and perceived dangers of these pollutants in our environment and has the potential to reduce individual risk by changing corporate practices and improving public health policies.

  3. In vitro cardiotoxicity assessment of environmental chemicals using an organotypic human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived model.

    PubMed

    Sirenko, Oksana; Grimm, Fabian A; Ryan, Kristen R; Iwata, Yasuhiro; Chiu, Weihsueh A; Parham, Frederick; Wignall, Jessica A; Anson, Blake; Cromwell, Evan F; Behl, Mamta; Rusyn, Ivan; Tice, Raymond R

    2017-03-01

    An important target area for addressing data gaps through in vitro screening is the detection of potential cardiotoxicants. Despite the fact that current conservative estimates relate at least 23% of all cardiovascular disease cases to environmental exposures, the identities of the causative agents remain largely uncharacterized. Here, we evaluate the feasibility of a combinatorial in vitro/in silico screening approach for functional and mechanistic cardiotoxicity profiling of environmental hazards using a library of 69 representative environmental chemicals and drugs. Human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes were exposed in concentration-response for 30min or 24h and effects on cardiomyocyte beating and cellular and mitochondrial toxicity were assessed by kinetic measurements of intracellular Ca(2+) flux and high-content imaging using the nuclear dye Hoechst 33342, the cell viability marker Calcein AM, and the mitochondrial depolarization probe JC-10. More than half of the tested chemicals exhibited effects on cardiomyocyte beating after 30min of exposure. In contrast, after 24h, effects on cell beating without concomitant cytotoxicity were observed in about one third of the compounds. Concentration-response data for in vitro bioactivity phenotypes visualized using the Toxicological Prioritization Index (ToxPi) showed chemical class-specific clustering of environmental chemicals, including pesticides, flame retardants, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. For environmental chemicals with human exposure predictions, the activity-to-exposure ratios between modeled blood concentrations and in vitro bioactivity were between one and five orders of magnitude. These findings not only demonstrate that some ubiquitous environmental pollutants might have the potential at high exposure levels to alter cardiomyocyte function, but also indicate similarities in the mechanism of these effects both within and among chemicals and classes.

  4. Identification and Prioritization of Chemical Mixtures from Environmental Residue Data

    EPA Science Inventory

    High throughput toxicity testing has greatly improved the speed at which single chemicals can be screened using in vitro methods. However, people are not exposed to a single chemical at a time, rather to a mixture of chemicals. Even with the increased speed of these methods, te...

  5. Environmental Fate of Organophosphorus Compounds Related to Chemical Weapons

    SciTech Connect

    Davisson, M L; Love, A H; Vance, A; Reynolds, J G

    2005-02-08

    Man-made organophosphorus compounds have been widely distributed throughout our environment as pesticides since their development during and after WWII. Many important studies have documented their relative persistence and toxicity. Development and use of some organophosphorus compounds as nerve agents gave rise to a separate but parallel effort to understand environmental persistence. In this latter case, the experiments have focused mainly on evaporation rates and first-order reaction kinetics. However, because organophosphorus compounds are easily polarized, the ionic content of a surrounding media directly factors into these reaction rates, but limited work in this regard has been done under environmentally relevant conditions. Furthermore, limited experiments investigating persistence of these agents on soil has resulted in widely varying degradation rates. Not surprisingly, no studies have investigated affinities of organophosphorus nerve agents to mineral or organic matter typically found in soil. As a result, we initiated laboratory experiments on dilute concentrations of nerve agent O-ethyl S-(2-diisopropylaminoethyl) methylphosphonothiolate (VX) to quantify persistence in simulated environmental aqueous conditions. A quantitative analytical method was developed for VX and its degradation products using High Performance Liquid Chromatography-Electrospray Ionization-Mass Spectrometry (HPLC-ESI-MS). VX hydrolysis rate is known to have a pH-dependency, however, the type of buffer and the relative proportion of different nucleophiles in solution significantly affect the overall rate and mechanism of degradation. For example, dissolved carbonate, a weak nucleophile dominating natural water, yielded pseudo-first order rate constants of {approx} 8 x 10{sup -3}/hr at pH 5 and 2 x 10{sup -2}/hr at pH 11. This small pH-dependent variation departs significantly from widely accepted rates at this pH range (4 x 10{sup -4}/hr to 8 x 10{sup -2}/hr) that were based on

  6. Overview of the ToxCast Research Program: Applications to Predictive Toxicology and Chemical Prioritization (SETAC)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Understanding the potential health risks posed by environmental chemicals is a significant challenge driven by the large number of diverse chemicals with generally uncharacterized exposures, mechanisms and toxicities. The U.S. EPA’s ToxCast chemical prioritization research projec...

  7. Assessment of quantitative structure-activity relationship of toxicity prediction models for Korean chemical substance control legislation

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Kwang-Yon; Shin, Seong Eun; No, Kyoung Tai

    2015-01-01

    Objectives For successful adoption of legislation controlling registration and assessment of chemical substances, it is important to obtain sufficient toxicological experimental evidence and other related information. It is also essential to obtain a sufficient number of predicted risk and toxicity results. Particularly, methods used in predicting toxicities of chemical substances during acquisition of required data, ultimately become an economic method for future dealings with new substances. Although the need for such methods is gradually increasing, the-required information about reliability and applicability range has not been systematically provided. Methods There are various representative environmental and human toxicity models based on quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR). Here, we secured the 10 representative QSAR-based prediction models and its information that can make predictions about substances that are expected to be regulated. We used models that predict and confirm usability of the information expected to be collected and submitted according to the legislation. After collecting and evaluating each predictive model and relevant data, we prepared methods quantifying the scientific validity and reliability, which are essential conditions for using predictive models. Results We calculated predicted values for the models. Furthermore, we deduced and compared adequacies of the models using the Alternative non-testing method assessed for Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals Substances scoring system, and deduced the applicability domains for each model. Additionally, we calculated and compared inclusion rates of substances expected to be regulated, to confirm the applicability. Conclusions We evaluated and compared the data, adequacy, and applicability of our selected QSAR-based toxicity prediction models, and included them in a database. Based on this data, we aimed to construct a system that can be used

  8. Prediction of glass durability as a function of environmental conditions

    SciTech Connect

    Jantzen, C M

    1988-01-01

    A thermodynamic model of glass durability is applied to natural, ancient, and nuclear waste glasses. The durabilities of over 150 different natural and man-made glasses, including actual ancient Roman and Islamic glasses (Jalame ca. 350 AD, Nishapur 10-11th century AD and Gorgon 9-11th century AD), are compared. Glass durability is a function of the thermodynamic hydration free energy, ..delta..G/sub hyd/, which can be calculated from glass composition and solution pH. The durability of the most durable nuclear waste glasses examined was /approximately/10/sup 6/ years. The least durable waste glass formulations were comparable in durability to the most durable simulated medieval window glasses of /approximately/10/sup 3/ years. In this manner, the durability of nuclear waste glasses has been interpolated to be /approximately/10/sup 6/ years and no less than 10/sup 3/ years. Hydration thermodynamics have been shown to be applicable to the dissolution of glass in various natural environments. Groundwater-glass interactions relative to geologic disposal of nuclear waste, hydration rind dating of obsidians, andor other archeological studies can be modeled, e.g., the relative durabilities of six simulated medieval window glasses have been correctly predicted for both laboratory (one month) and burial (5 years) experiments. Effects of solution pH on glass dissolution has been determined experimentally for the 150 different glasses and can be predicted theoretically by hydration thermodynamics. The effects of solution redox on dissolution of glass matrix elements such as SI and B have shown to be minimal. The combined effects of solution pH and Eh have been described and unified by construction of thermodynamically calculated Pourbaix (pH-Eh) diagrams for glass dissolution. The Pourbaix diagrams have been quantified to describe glass dissolution as a function of environmental conditions by use of the data derived from hydration thermodynamics. 56 refs., 7 figs.

  9. Incorporating High-Throughput Exposure Predictions With Dosimetry-Adjusted In Vitro Bioactivity to Inform Chemical Toxicity Testing

    PubMed Central

    Wetmore, Barbara A.; Wambaugh, John F.; Allen, Brittany; Ferguson, Stephen S.; Sochaski, Mark A.; Setzer, R. Woodrow; Houck, Keith A.; Strope, Cory L.; Cantwell, Katherine; Judson, Richard S.; LeCluyse, Edward; Clewell, Harvey J.; Thomas, Russell S.; Andersen, Melvin E.

    2015-01-01

    We previously integrated dosimetry and exposure with high-throughput screening (HTS) to enhance the utility of ToxCast HTS data by translating in vitro bioactivity concentrations to oral equivalent doses (OEDs) required to achieve these levels internally. These OEDs were compared against regulatory exposure estimates, providing an activity-to-exposure ratio (AER) useful for a risk-based ranking strategy. As ToxCast efforts expand (ie, Phase II) beyond food-use pesticides toward a wider chemical domain that lacks exposure and toxicity information, prediction tools become increasingly important. In this study, in vitro hepatic clearance and plasma protein binding were measured to estimate OEDs for a subset of Phase II chemicals. OEDs were compared against high-throughput (HT) exposure predictions generated using probabilistic modeling and Bayesian approaches generated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ExpoCast program. This approach incorporated chemical-specific use and national production volume data with biomonitoring data to inform the exposure predictions. This HT exposure modeling approach provided predictions for all Phase II chemicals assessed in this study whereas estimates from regulatory sources were available for only 7% of chemicals. Of the 163 chemicals assessed in this study, 3 or 13 chemicals possessed AERs < 1 or < 100, respectively. Diverse bioactivities across a range of assays and concentrations were also noted across the wider chemical space surveyed. The availability of HT exposure estimation and bioactivity screening tools provides an opportunity to incorporate a risk-based strategy for use in testing prioritization. PMID:26251325

  10. Prediction of phylogeographic endemism in an environmentally complex biome.

    PubMed

    Carnaval, Ana Carolina; Waltari, Eric; Rodrigues, Miguel T; Rosauer, Dan; VanDerWal, Jeremy; Damasceno, Roberta; Prates, Ivan; Strangas, Maria; Spanos, Zoe; Rivera, Danielle; Pie, Marcio R; Firkowski, Carina R; Bornschein, Marcos R; Ribeiro, Luiz F; Moritz, Craig

    2014-10-07

    Phylogeographic endemism, the degree to which the history of recently evolved lineages is spatially restricted, reflects fundamental evolutionary processes such as cryptic divergence, adaptation and biological responses to environmental heterogeneity. Attempts to explain the extraordinary diversity of the tropics, which often includes deep phylogeographic structure, frequently invoke interactions of climate variability across space, time and topography. To evaluate historical versus contemporary drivers of phylogeographic endemism in a tropical system, we analyse the effects of current and past climatic variation on the genetic diversity of 25 vertebrates in the Brazilian Atlantic rainforest. We identify two divergent bioclimatic domains within the forest and high turnover around the Rio Doce. Independent modelling of these domains demonstrates that endemism patterns are subject to different climatic drivers. Past climate dynamics, specifically areas of relative stability, predict phylogeographic endemism in the north. Conversely, contemporary climatic heterogeneity better explains endemism in the south. These results accord with recent speleothem and fossil pollen studies, suggesting that climatic variability through the last 250 kyr impacted the northern and the southern forests differently. Incorporating sub-regional differences in climate dynamics will enhance our ability to understand those processes shaping high phylogeographic and species endemism, in the Neotropics and beyond.

  11. Prediction of phylogeographic endemism in an environmentally complex biome

    PubMed Central

    Carnaval, Ana Carolina; Waltari, Eric; Rodrigues, Miguel T.; Rosauer, Dan; VanDerWal, Jeremy; Damasceno, Roberta; Prates, Ivan; Strangas, Maria; Spanos, Zoe; Rivera, Danielle; Pie, Marcio R.; Firkowski, Carina R.; Bornschein, Marcos R.; Ribeiro, Luiz F.; Moritz, Craig

    2014-01-01

    Phylogeographic endemism, the degree to which the history of recently evolved lineages is spatially restricted, reflects fundamental evolutionary processes such as cryptic divergence, adaptation and biological responses to environmental heterogeneity. Attempts to explain the extraordinary diversity of the tropics, which often includes deep phylogeographic structure, frequently invoke interactions of climate variability across space, time and topography. To evaluate historical versus contemporary drivers of phylogeographic endemism in a tropical system, we analyse the effects of current and past climatic variation on the genetic diversity of 25 vertebrates in the Brazilian Atlantic rainforest. We identify two divergent bioclimatic domains within the forest and high turnover around the Rio Doce. Independent modelling of these domains demonstrates that endemism patterns are subject to different climatic drivers. Past climate dynamics, specifically areas of relative stability, predict phylogeographic endemism in the north. Conversely, contemporary climatic heterogeneity better explains endemism in the south. These results accord with recent speleothem and fossil pollen studies, suggesting that climatic variability through the last 250 kyr impacted the northern and the southern forests differently. Incorporating sub-regional differences in climate dynamics will enhance our ability to understand those processes shaping high phylogeographic and species endemism, in the Neotropics and beyond. PMID:25122231

  12. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency strategic plan for evaluating the toxicity of chemicals.

    PubMed

    Firestone, Michael; Kavlock, Robert; Zenick, Hal; Kramer, Melissa

    2010-02-01

    In the 2007 report Toxicity Testing in the 21st Century: A Vision and a Strategy, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences envisioned a major transition in toxicity testing from cumbersome, expensive, and lengthy in vivo testing with qualitative endpoints, to in vitro robotic high-throughput screening with mechanistic quantitative parameters. Recognizing the need for agencies to partner and collaborate to ensure global harmonization, standardization, quality control and information sharing, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is leading by example and has established an intra-agency Future of Toxicity Testing Workgroup (FTTW). This workgroup has produced an ambitious blueprint for incorporating this new scientific paradigm to change the way chemicals are screened and evaluated for toxicity. Four main components of this strategy are discussed, as follows: (1) the impact and benefits of various types of regulatory activities, (2) chemical screening and prioritization, (3) toxicity pathway-based risk assessment, and (4) institutional transition. The new paradigm is predicated on the discovery of molecular perturbation pathways at the in vitro level that predict adverse health effects from xenobiotics exposure, and then extrapolating those events to the tissue, organ, or whole organisms by computational models. Research on these pathways will be integrated and compiled using the latest technology with the cooperation of global agencies, industry, and other stakeholders. The net result will be that chemical toxicity screening will become more efficient and cost-effective, include real-world exposure assessments, and eliminate currently used uncertainty factors.

  13. THE FUTURE OF TOXICOLOGY-PREDICTIVE TOXICOLOGY: AN EXPANDED VIEW OF CHEMICAL TOXICITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    A chemistry approach to predictive toxicology relies on structure−activity relationship (SAR) modeling to predict biological activity from chemical structure. Such approaches have proven capabilities when applied to well-defined toxicity end points or regions of chemical space. T...

  14. Leveraging Publically Available Chemical Functional Use Data in Support of Exposure Prediction

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. EPA Exposure Forecasting (ExpoCast) project aims to provide rapid screening-level exposure predictions for thousands of chemicals, most of which lack detailed exposure data. Chemical functional use - the role a chemical plays in processes or products (e.g. solvent, ant...

  15. Why small and medium chemical companies continue to pose severe environmental risks in rural China.

    PubMed

    He, Guizhen; Zhang, Lei; Mol, Arthur P J; Wang, Tieyu; Lu, Yonglong

    2014-02-01

    In China, rural chemical SMEs are often believed to still largely operate below the sustainability radar. This paper investigates to what extent and how chemical SMEs are already experiencing pressure to improve their environmental performance, using an in-depth case study in Jasmine County, Hebei province. The results show that local residents had rather low trust in the environmental improvement promises made by the enterprises and the local government, and disagreed with the proposed improvement plans. Although the power of local residents to influence decision making remained limited, the chemical SMEs started to feel increasing pressures to clean up their business, from governments, local communities and civil society, and international value chain stakeholders. Notwithstanding these mounting pressures chemical SME's environmental behavior and performance has not changed radically for the better. The strong economic ties between local county governments and chemical SMEs continue to be a major barrier for stringent environmental regulation.

  16. Genetic and environmental factors affecting host response to drugs and other chemical compounds in our environment.

    PubMed Central

    Vesell, E S; Passananti, G T

    1977-01-01

    Compared to laboratory animals, humans are extremely heterogenous with respect to the many factors that can influence the distribution and biological effects of toxic chemicals. This heterogeneity can prevent an accurate assessment of the impact of a particular toxic compound on the health of an individual subject. Some of the factors that can significantly modify the host response to certain drugs, which serve in this review as a model for environmental chemicals, are enumerated and discussed. Although the mechanisms by which many of these factors modify the biological effects of certain environmental chemicals and drugs have been determined in some cases, better definition of the nature of interactions between these factors and environmental chemicals in a particular individual is required at a biochemical and molecular level. Recommendations are offered for the further development of our knowledge concerning interactions between environmental chemicals and such factors in a particular individual. PMID:598349

  17. Agricultural Chemicals and Radiation. Ag Ed Environmental Education Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tulloch, Rodney W.

    The document is designed to be used as a resource in teaching vocational agriculture high school students about the environment. Agricultural chemicals are the major focus, with some attention to radiation. The importance of safety in agricultural chemical use is stressed, with descriptions of the pesticide label; protective clothing; respiratory…

  18. High Throughput Heuristics for Prioritizing Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    The risk posed to human health by any of the thousands of untested anthropogenic chemicals in our environment is a function of both the potential hazard presented by the chemical, and the possibility of being exposed. Without the capacity to make quantitative, albeit uncertain, f...

  19. Do Interactions Between Gut Ecology and Environmental Chemicals Contribute to Obesity and Diabetes?

    PubMed Central

    Snedeker, Suzanne M.

    2011-01-01

    Background: Gut microbiota are important factors in obesity and diabetes, yet little is known about their role in the toxicodynamics of environmental chemicals, including those recently found to be obesogenic and diabetogenic. Objectives: We integrated evidence that independently links gut ecology and environmental chemicals to obesity and diabetes, providing a framework for suggesting how these environmental factors may interact with these diseases, and identified future research needs. Methods: We examined studies with germ-free or antibiotic-treated laboratory animals, and human studies that evaluated how dietary influences and microbial changes affected obesity and diabetes. Strengths and weaknesses of studies evaluating how environmental chemical exposures may affect obesity and diabetes were summarized, and research gaps on how gut ecology may affect the disposition of environmental chemicals were identified. Results: Mounting evidence indicates that gut microbiota composition affects obesity and diabetes, as does exposure to environmental chemicals. The toxicology and pharmacology literature also suggests that interindividual variations in gut microbiota may affect chemical metabolism via direct activation of chemicals, depletion of metabolites needed for biotransformation, alteration of host biotransformation enzyme activities, changes in enterohepatic circulation, altered bioavailability of environmental chemicals and/or antioxidants from food, and alterations in gut motility and barrier function. Conclusions: Variations in gut microbiota are likely to affect human toxicodynamics and increase individual exposure to obesogenic and diabetogenic chemicals. Combating the global obesity and diabetes epidemics requires a multifaceted approach that should include greater emphasis on understanding and controlling the impact of interindividual gut microbe variability on the disposition of environmental chemicals in humans. PMID:22042266

  20. Prioritizing chemicals for environmental management in China based on screening of potential risks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Xiangyi; Mao, Yan; Sun, Jinye; Shen, Yingwa

    2014-03-01

    The rapid development of China's chemical industry has created increasing pressure to improve the environmental management of chemicals. To bridge the large gap between the use and safe management of chemicals, we performed a comprehensive review of the international methods used to prioritize chemicals for environmental management. By comparing domestic and foreign methods, we confirmed the presence of this gap and identified potential solutions. Based on our literature review, we developed an appropriate screening method that accounts for the unique characteristics of chemical use within China. The proposed method is based on an evaluation using nine indices of the potential hazard posed by a chemical: three environmental hazard indices (persistence, bioaccumulation, and eco-toxicity), four health hazard indices (acute toxicity, carcinogenicity, mutagenicity, and reproductive and developmental toxicity), and two environmental exposure hazard indices (chemical amount and utilization pattern). The results of our screening agree with results of previous efforts from around the world, confirming the validity of the new system. The classification method will help decisionmakers to prioritize and identify the chemicals with the highest environmental risk, thereby providing a basis for improving chemical management in China.

  1. Developing methods to assess and predict the population and community level effects of environmental contaminants

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Emlen, John M.; Springman, Kathrine R.

    2007-01-01

    The field of ecological toxicity seems largely to have drifted away from what its title implies—assessing and predicting the ecological consequences of environmental contaminants—moving instead toward an emphasis on individual effects and physiologic case studies. This paper elucidates how a relatively new ecological methodology, interaction assessment (INTASS), could be useful in addressing the field's initial goals. Specifically, INTASS is a model platform and methodology, applicable across a broad array of taxa and habitat types, that can be used to construct population dynamics models from field data. Information on environmental contaminants and multiple stressors can be incorporated into these models in a form that bypasses the problems inherent in assessing uptake, chemical interactions in the environment, and synergistic effects in the organism. INTASS can, therefore, be used to evaluate the effects of contaminants and other stressors at the population level and to predict how changes in stressor levels or composition of contaminant mixtures, as well as various mitigation measures, might affect population dynamics.

  2. Integrated environmental risk assessment and whole-process management system in chemical industry parks.

    PubMed

    Shao, Chaofeng; Yang, Juan; Tian, Xiaogang; Ju, Meiting; Huang, Lei

    2013-04-19

    Chemical industry parks in China are considered high-risk areas because they present numerous risks that can damage the environment, such as pollution incidents. In order to identify the environmental risks and the principal risk factors in these areas, we have developed a simple physical model of a regional environmental risk field (ERF) using existing dispersal patterns and migration models. The regional ERF zoning was also conducted and a reference value for diagnostic methods was developed to determine risk-acceptable, risk-warning, and risk-mitigation zones, which can provide a risk source layout for chemical industry parks. In accordance with the environmental risk control requirements, this study focused on the three stages of control and management of environmental risk and established an environmental risk management system including risk source identification and assessment, environmental safety planning, early risk warning, emergency management, assessment of environmental effects, and environmental remediation of pollution accidents. By using this model, the environmental risks in Tianjin Binhai New Area, the largest chemical industry park in China, were assessed and the environmental risk zoning map was drawn, which suggested the existence of many unacceptable environmental risks in this area. Thus, relevant suggestions have been proposed from the perspective of the adjustment of risk source layout, intensified management of environmental risk control and so on.

  3. Integrated Environmental Risk Assessment and Whole-Process Management System in Chemical Industry Parks

    PubMed Central

    Shao, Chaofeng; Yang, Juan; Tian, Xiaogang; Ju, Meiting; Huang, Lei

    2013-01-01

    Chemical industry parks in China are considered high-risk areas because they present numerous risks that can damage the environment, such as pollution incidents. In order to identify the environmental risks and the principal risk factors in these areas, we have developed a simple physical model of a regional environmental risk field (ERF) using existing dispersal patterns and migration models. The regional ERF zoning was also conducted and a reference value for diagnostic methods was developed to determine risk-acceptable, risk-warning, and risk-mitigation zones, which can provide a risk source layout for chemical industry parks. In accordance with the environmental risk control requirements, this study focused on the three stages of control and management of environmental risk and established an environmental risk management system including risk source identification and assessment, environmental safety planning, early risk warning, emergency management, assessment of environmental effects, and environmental remediation of pollution accidents. By using this model, the environmental risks in Tianjin Binhai New Area, the largest chemical industry park in China, were assessed and the environmental risk zoning map was drawn, which suggested the existence of many unacceptable environmental risks in this area. Thus, relevant suggestions have been proposed from the perspective of the adjustment of risk source layout, intensified management of environmental risk control and so on. PMID:23603866

  4. Variation in Environmentalism among University Students: Majoring in Outdoor Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Predicts Environmental Concerns and Behaviors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Arnocky, Steven; Stroink, Mirella L.

    2011-01-01

    In a survey of Canadian university students (N = 205), the relationship between majoring in an outdoor recreation university program and environmental concern, cooperation, and behavior were examined. Stepwise linear regression indicated that enrollment in outdoor recreation was predictive of environmental behavior and ecological cooperation; and…

  5. Predicting the environmental distribution of compounds with unknown physicochemical properties from known pesticide properties

    SciTech Connect

    Prasad, S.S.

    1991-01-01

    This study examines how pesticide characteristics such as water solubility, molecular weight, bioconcentration, volatility, and soil absorption affect soil-to-water mobility, water-to-air dissipation, and water-to-biota accumulation when present in the environmental medium of preferred residence. The study concludes that chemicals that have low water solubilities tend to adsorb to soil, those that have low vapor pressures tend to dissipate slowly from water, and those that have relatively high octanol-to-water partition coefficients or low water solubility have a high potential for bioconcentration. Based on these findings, researchers should be able to predict the mobility of pesticides belonging to a particular category or family of compounds with unknown physicochemical properties and recommend ways to restore the environment. 13 refs., 13 figs., 4 tabs.

  6. Environmental chemicals and autoimmune disease: cause and effect.

    PubMed

    Hess, Evelyn V

    2002-12-27

    Many important clues have been provided by the relationship of certain medications to lupus and other autoimmune syndromes. These are temporary conditions that resolve when the medication is removed. There are now over 70 such medications which have been reported related to these autoimmune conditions. Interest continues to grow in the potential for environmental substances to cause these syndromes. Among those under suspicion are hydrazines, tartrazines, hair dyes, trichloroethylene, industrial emissions and hazardous wastes. Other possible associations include silica, mercury, cadmium, gold and L canavanine. Two recognised outbreaks include 'toxic oil syndrome' related to contaminated rape seed oil in Spain in 1981 and exposure to a contaminated environmental substance associated with an autoimmune attack on muscle tissue in 1989. Recently, there have been proposals made for the definition and identification of environmentally associated immune disorders. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has also provided recent publications for other environmentally related problems. All these aspects will be presented and reviewed in detail.

  7. ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICAL MONITORING IN THE U.S.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Chemical monitoring of the environment is performed in the United States by Federal and State agencies, local governments, industries, organizations, and private individuals. The major reasons for monitoring are for compliance with laws and regulations, investigation of suspec...

  8. Environmental issues and work: women with multiple chemical sensitivities.

    PubMed

    Lipson, Juliene G; Doiron, Nathalie

    2006-08-01

    Multiple chemical sensitivities (MCS) is an acquired condition in which exposure to low levels of chemicals causes symptoms in multiple organ systems. Some 12%-16% of the U.S. population has some level of chemical sensitivity, 80% of whom are women. Attempts to reduce chemical exposures leads to enormous life difficulties at home, school, and workplace. We base our article on an ethnographic study of MCS in the United States and Canada. We describe here themes related to work issues in terms of a general trajectory of becoming sick from work exposures, coping with toxic physical environments and dealing with coworkers and, when unable to continue working, applying for workers' compensation, or disability status, or both.

  9. High Throughput Screening of Toxicity Pathways Perturbed by Environmental Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    Toxicology, a field largely unchanged over the past several decades, is undergoing a significant transformation driven by a number of forces – the increasing number of chemicals needing assessment, changing legal requirements, advances in biology and computer science, and concern...

  10. THE EFFECT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS ON HUMAN HEALTH

    EPA Science Inventory

    Humans and animals have always been exposed to chemicals in our environments - natural products in foods, smoke from cooking fires, sewage in drinking water, pesticides from plants. However, the dramatic increases in industrialization over the past three centuries have dramatica...

  11. THE EFFECT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS ON HUMAN HEALTH -- USCF

    EPA Science Inventory

    Humans and animals have always been exposed to chemicals in our environment - natural products in foods, smoke from cooking fires, sewage in drinking water, pesticides from plants. However, the dramatic increases in industrialization over the past three centuries have dramatical...

  12. The Effect of Environmental Chemicals on Human Health -- CJA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Humans and animals have always been exposed to chemicals in our environment - natural products in foods, smoke from cooking fires, sewage in drinking water, pesticides from plants. However, the dramatic increases in industrialization over the past three centuries have dramatical...

  13. New environmental concepts in the chemical and coke industries

    SciTech Connect

    A.Yu. Naletov; V.A. Naletov

    2007-05-15

    We know that environmentally pure technologies do not exist. Coke production is no exception to the rule. The article considers the logic of environmental decision making. Attention focuses on a new bank of ecologically appropriate materials whose release to the biosphere must be considered solely in quantititative terms. Qualitativily all these materials are familiar; they are assimilated by populations of microorganisms and tar thus compatible with the biosphere.

  14. Assays for endocrine-disrupting chemicals: Beyond environmental estrogens

    SciTech Connect

    Folmar, L.C.

    1999-07-01

    Recent popular and scientific articles have reported the presence of estrogenic and other hormone mimicking chemicals in the environment and their potential for causing reproductive dysfunction in humans and wildlife. The purpose of this session was to present the best available, if not standard, analytical methods to assay for the effects of xenobiotic chemicals on a broad range of endocrine-mediated events, including reproduction, growth, development and stress responses in aquatic vertebrate and invertebrate animals.

  15. Prediction of rodent carcinogenicity of further 30 chemicals bioassayed by the US National Toxicology Program

    SciTech Connect

    Benigni, R.; Andreoli, C.; Zito, R.

    1996-10-01

    Recently the US National Toxicology Program (NTP) sponsored a comparative exercise in which different prediction approaches (both biologically and chemically based) were challenged for their predictive abilities of rodent carcinogenicity of a common set of chemicals. The exercise enjoyed remarkable scientific success and stimulated NTP to sponsor a second challenging round of tests, inviting participants to present predictions relative to the rodent carcinogenicity of a further 30 chemicals; these are currently being tested. In this article, we present our predictions based on structure-activity relationship considerations. In our procedure, first each chemical was assigned to an activity mechanism class and then, with semiquantitative considerations, was assigned a probability carcinogenicity score, taking into account simultaneously the hypothesized action mechanism and physical chemical parameters. 31 refs., 2 tabs.

  16. Predicting modes of toxic action from chemical structure

    EPA Science Inventory

    Like many of the papers in the ET&C top 100 list, the development of the fathead minnow database and the assignment of modes of action to the 617 chemicals therein was the result of a comprehensive research effort by a multidisciplinary team of researchers with expertise in quant...

  17. Chemical Safety Alert: First Responders’ Environmental Liability Due To Mass Decontamination Runoff

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    CERCLA's good Samaritan provisions protect responders such as the Chemical Weapons Improved Response Team during lifesaving actions. Once imminent threats are addressed, responders should contain contamination and avoid/mitigate environmental consequences.

  18. IMPROVING THE ENVIRONMENTAL PERFORMANCE OF CHEMICAL PROCESSES THROUGH THE USE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Efforts are currently underway at the USEPA to develop information technology applications to improve the environmental performance of the chemical process industry. These efforts include the use of genetic algorithms to optimize different process options for minimal environmenta...

  19. TRACI - THE TOOL FOR THE REDUCTION AND ASSESSMENT OF CHEMICAL AND OTHER ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    TRACI, The Tool for the Reduction and Assessment of Chemical and other environmental Impacts, is described along with its history, the underlying research, methodologies, and insights within individual impact categories. TRACI facilitates the characterization of stressors that ma...

  20. THYROID DISRUPTING CHEMICALS: CHALLENGES IN ASSESSING NEUROTOXIC RISK FROM ENVIRONMENTAL MIXTURES.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental contaminants are known to act as thyroid disrupting chemicals (TDCs). Broadly defined, TDCs are xenobiotics that alter the structure or function of the thyroid gland, alter regulatory enzymes associated with thyroid hormone (TH) homeostasis, or change circulating o...

  1. Designing a Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationship for the Intrinsic Metabolic Clearance of Environmentally Relevant Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    Toxicokinetic models serve a vital role in risk assessment by bridging the gap between chemical exposure and potentially toxic endpoints. While intrinsic metabolic clearance rates have a strong impact on toxicokinetics, limited data is available for environmentally relevant chemi...

  2. Comparison of cell type specificities of stress pathway reporter assay ensemble response to environmental chemicals.

    EPA Science Inventory

    The large number of environmental compounds that currently need characterization and prioritization for further toxicological study is a serious regulatory challenge facing the EPA. In addition to these agents comprising of pesticides, inerts, and high-production volume chemical...

  3. Evaluation of QSAR models for predicting the partition coefficient (log P) of chemicals under the REACH regulation.

    PubMed

    Cappelli, Claudia Ileana; Benfenati, Emilio; Cester, Josep

    2015-11-01

    The partition coefficient (log P) is a physicochemical parameter widely used in environmental and health sciences and is important in REACH and CLP regulations. In this regulatory context, the number of existing experimental data on log P is negligible compared to the number of chemicals for which it is necessary. There are many models to predict log P and we have selected a number of free programs to examine how they predict the log P of chemicals registered for REACH and to evaluate wheter they can be used in place of experimental data. Some results are good, especially if the information on the applicability domain of the models is considered, with R(2) values from 0.7 to 0.8 and root mean square error (RMSE) from 0.8 to 1.5.

  4. An evaluation of the ability of chemical measurements to predict polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon-contaminated sediment toxicity to Hyalella azteca.

    PubMed

    McDonough, Kathleen M; Azzolina, Nicholas A; Hawthorne, Steven B; Nakles, David V; Neuhauser, Edward F

    2010-07-01

    The present study examined the ability of three chemical estimation methods to predict toxicity and nontoxicity of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) -contaminated sediment to the freshwater benthic amphipod Hyalella azteca for 192 sediment samples from 12 field sites. The first method used bulk sediment concentrations of 34 PAH compounds (PAH34), and fraction of total organic carbon, coupled with equilibrium partitioning theory to predict pore-water concentrations (KOC method). The second method used bulk sediment PAH34 concentrations and the fraction of anthropogenic (black carbon) and natural organic carbon coupled with literature-based black carbon-water and organic carbon-water partition coefficients to estimate pore-water concentrations (KOCKBC method). The final method directly measured pore-water concentrations (pore-water method). The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's hydrocarbon narcosis model was used to predict sediment toxicity for all three methods using the modeled or measured pore-water concentration as input. The KOC method was unable to predict nontoxicity (83% of nontoxic samples were predicted to be toxic). The KOCKBC method was not able to predict toxicity (57% of toxic samples were predicted to be nontoxic) and, therefore, was not protective of the environment. The pore-water method was able to predict toxicity (correctly predicted 100% of the toxic samples were toxic) and nontoxicity (correctly predicted 71% of the nontoxic samples were nontoxic). This analysis clearly shows that direct pore-water measurement is the most accurate chemical method currently available to estimate PAH-contaminated sediment toxicity to H. azteca.

  5. EPAs ToxCast Program for Predicting Toxcity and Prioritizing Chemicals for Further Screening and Testing

    EPA Science Inventory

    Testing of environmental and industrial chemicals for toxicity potential is a daunting task because of the wide range of possible toxicity mechanisms. Although animal testing is one means of achieving broad toxicity coverage, evaluation of large numbers of chemicals is challengin...

  6. Probing the ToxCastTM Chemical Library for Predictive Signatures of Developmental Toxicity -NLTO Poster

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPA’s ToxCast™ project is profiling the in vitro bioactivity of chemical compounds to assess pathway-level and cell-based signatures that correlate with observed in vivo toxicity. We hypothesize that cell signaling pathways are primary targets for diverse environmental chemicals ...

  7. Probing the ToxCast Chemical Library for Predictive Signatures of Developmental Toxicity

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPA’s ToxCast™ project is profiling the in vitro bioactivity of chemical compounds to assess pathway-level and cell-based signatures that correlate with observed in vivo toxicity. We hypothesize that cell signaling pathways are primary targets for diverse environmental chemicals ...

  8. The Modification of Biocellular Chemical Reactions by Environmental Physicochemicals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishido, M.

    Environmental risk factors affect human biological system to different extent from modification of biochemical reaction to cellular catastrophe. There are considerable public concerns about electromagnetic fields and endocrine disruptors. Their risk assessments have not been fully achieved because of their scientific uncertainty: electromagnetic fields just modify the bioreaction in the restricted cells and endocrine disruptors are quite unique in that their expression is dependent on the exposure periods throughout a life. Thus, we here describe their molecular characterization to establish the new risk assessments for environmental physicochemicals.

  9. Prediction of Combustion Instability with Detailed Chemical Kinetics

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-12-01

    acoustic cycle . All three post-length cases are studied and attention is paid to discerning the specific modes of coupling that lead to the incidence...downstream end of the combustor is chosen for its reduced susceptibility to local variations and ability to capture limit cycle behavior. An overall...chemical kinetics show limit cycle behavior in all the cases shown. The pressure signals from the global-1 simulations show more noise compared to the GRI

  10. On the Use of Local and Global QSPRs for the Prediction of Physico-chemical Properties of Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers.

    PubMed

    Papa, Ester; Kovarich, Simona; Gramatica, Paola

    2011-03-14

    Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are persistent chemicals that have been among the most marketed flame retardants used all over the world in the last decades. PBDEs have been detected in all environmental compartments, as well as in humans and wildlife, where they are able to accumulate and exert their toxic effects. At present only a limited amount of experimental data is available to characterize the physico-chemical and toxicological behavior of PBDEs and similar brominated flame retardants. QSA(P)R approaches are very useful tools to predict missing data starting from the chemical structure of compounds. In this study several local QSPR models, developed specifically for the prediction of logKoa, logKow and melting point of PBDEs, were compared with predictions by global QSPR models, such as KoaWIN, KowWIN and MPBPWIN from the EPI Suite package, and AlogP and MlogP from DRAGON software, which were trained on heterogeneous and large datasets. The analysis addressed in the paper supported the identification of points of strength and weaknesses of both local models, and global models. The results are relevant to support decisions made by general QSAR users and regulators, when they have to select and apply one of the analyzed models to predict properties for PBDEs.

  11. METHODS FOR INTEGRATING ENVIRONMENTAL CONSIDERATIONS INTO CHEMICAL PROCESS DESIGN DECISIONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The objective of this cooperative agreement was to postulate a means by which an engineer could routinely include environmental considerations in day-to-day conceptual design problems; a means that could easily integrate with existing design processes, and thus avoid massive retr...

  12. DESIGNING EFFICIENT, ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY CHEMICAL PROCESSES

    EPA Science Inventory

    A catalytic reforming process has been studied using hierarchical design and simulation calculations. Aproximations for the fugitive emissions indicate which streams allow the most value to be lost and which have the highest potential environmental impact. One can use tis inform...

  13. DESIGNING EFFICIENT, ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY CHEMICAL PROCESSES

    EPA Science Inventory

    A catalytic reforming process has been studied using hierarchical design and simulation calculations. Approximations for the fugitive emissions indicate which streams allow the most value to be lost and which have the highest potential environmental impact. One can use this infor...

  14. High Throughput Exposure Forecasts for Environmental Chemical Risk (SOT RASS)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Email Announcement to RASS: On December 11th we have rescheduled the webinar regarding progress and advances in exposure assessment, which was cancelled due to the government shutdown in October. Dr. Elaine Hubal, Deputy Director of the Chemical Safety for Sustainability (CSS) n...

  15. Environmental chemical mixtures: Assessing ecological exposure and effects in streams

    EPA Science Inventory

    This product is a USGS fact sheet that describes a collaborative effort between USGS and US EPA to characterize exposures to chemical mixtures and associated biological effects for a diverse range of US streams representing varying watershed size, land-use patterns, and ecotypes.

  16. High Throughput Pharmacokinetics for Environmental Chemicals (FutureToxII)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Pharmacokinetic (PK) models are critical to determine whether chemical exposures produce potentially hazardous tissue concentrations. For bioactivity identified in vitro (e.g. ToxCast) – hazardous or not – PK models can forecast exposure thresholds, below which no significant bio...

  17. Novel flame retardants: Estimating the physical-chemical properties and environmental fate of 94 halogenated and organophosphate PBDE replacements.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xianming; Sühring, Roxana; Serodio, Daniela; Bonnell, Mark; Sundin, Nils; Diamond, Miriam L

    2016-02-01

    In the wake of the listing by the Stockholm Convention of PBDEs, an increasing number of "novel" flame retardants (NFRs) are being used in products. The properties that make for desirable flame retardants can also lead to negative health effects, long environmental residence times and an affinity for organic matrices. While NFRs are currently in use, little information is available regarding their physical-chemical properties and environmental fate. In this study, 94 halogenated and organophosphate NFRs were evaluated for their persistence and long-range transport potential. Physical-chemical properties (namely liquid sub-cooled vapor pressure P(l) and solubility S(l), air-water (K(AW)), octanol-water (K(OW)), and octanol-air (K(OA)) partition coefficients) of the NFRs were predicted using three chemical property estimation tools: EPI Suite, SPARC and Absolv. Physical-chemical properties predicted using these tools were generally within 10(2)-10(3) for compounds with molecular weight < 800 g/mol. Estimated physical-chemical properties of compounds with >800 g/mol, and/or the presence of a heteroatom and/or a polar functional group could deviate by up to 10(12). According to the OECD P(OV) and LRTP Screening Tool, up to 40% of the NFRs have a persistence and/or long range transport potential of medium to high level of concern and up to 60% have persistence and or long range transport potential similar to the PBDEs they are replacing. Long range transport potential could be underestimated by the OECD model since the model under-predicts long range transport potential of some organophosphate compounds.

  18. Integrating Sustainable Development in Chemical Engineering Education: The Application of an Environmental Management System

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Montanes, M. T.; Palomares, A. E.; Sanchez-Tovar, R.

    2012-01-01

    The principles of sustainable development have been integrated in chemical engineering education by means of an environmental management system. These principles have been introduced in the teaching laboratories where students perform their practical classes. In this paper, the implementation of the environmental management system, the problems…

  19. A Qualitative Comparison of Porcine and Rodent Thyroperoxidase -Effects of Environmental Chemicals.

    EPA Science Inventory

    A wide variety of environmental chemicals alter the function of the thyroid system in many animal species. Thyroperoxidase (TPO), the enzyme that synthesizes thyroid hormone, is one of the known biochemical targets for thyroid disrupting chemicals (TDC). The majority of the in vi...

  20. Toxic chemical release inventory at the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site

    SciTech Connect

    Leonard, R.J.

    1995-07-01

    The Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site (Site) submits an annual Toxic Chemical Release Inventory (Form R) as required under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). The Site uses a multi-step process for completing the Form R which includes developing a written procedure, determine thresholds, collection of chemical use and fate information, and peer review.

  1. Endocrine Profiling and Prioritization of Environmental Chemicals Using ToxCast Data

    EPA Science Inventory

    The prioritization of chemicals for toxicity testing is a primary goal of the U.S. EPA’s ToxCast™ program. Phase I of ToxCast utilized a battery of 467 in vitro, high-throughput screening assays to assess 309 environmental chemicals. One important mode of action leading to toxici...

  2. Multiple Classes of Environmental Chemicals are Associated with Liver Disease: NHANES 2003-2006 [Journal Article

    EPA Science Inventory

    Biomonitoring of human tissues and fluids has shown that virtually all individuals, worldwide, carry a “body burden” of synthetic chemicals (Thornton et al. 2002; CDC 2009). Although the measurement of an environmental chemical in a person’s tissues or fluids is an indication of...

  3. WAR DSS: A DECISION SUPPORT SYSTEM FOR ENVIRONMENTALLY CONSCIOUS CHEMICAL PROCESS DESIGN

    EPA Science Inventory

    The second generation of the Waste Reduction (WAR) Algorithm is constructed as a decision support system (DSS) in the design of chemical manufacturing facilities. The WAR DSS is a software tool that can help reduce the potential environmental impacts (PEIs) of industrial chemical...

  4. Progress in High Throughput Exposure Assessment for Prioritizing Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals (SRA)

    EPA Science Inventory

    For thousands of chemicals in commerce, there is little or no information about exposure or health and ecological effects. The US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) has ongoing research programs to develop and evaluate models that use the often minimal chemical information a...

  5. Analysis of baseline gene expression levels from toxicogenomics study control animals to identify sources of variation and predict responses to chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    The use of gene expression profiling to predict chemical mode of action would be enhanced by better characterization of variance due to individual, environmental, and technical factors. Meta-analysis of microarray data from untreated or vehicle-treated animals within the control ...

  6. Integrating Environmental Management in Chemical Engineering Education by Introducing an Environmental Management System in the Student's Laboratory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Montanes, Maria T.; Palomares, Antonio E.

    2008-01-01

    In this work we show how specific challenges related to sustainable development can be integrated into chemical engineering education by introducing an environmental management system in the laboratory where the students perform their experimental lessons. It is shown how the system has been developed and implemented in the laboratory, what role…

  7. PREDICTION OF CHEMICAL RESIDUES IN AQUATIC ORGANISMS FOR A FIELD DISCHARGE SITUATION.

    EPA Science Inventory

    A field study was performed which compared predicted and measured concentrations of chemicals in receiving water organisms from three sampling locations on Five Mile Creek, Birmingham, Al. Two point source discharges, both from coke manufacturing facilities, were included in the ...

  8. Predictive Models and Tools for Assessing Chemicals under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA)

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    EPA has developed databases and predictive models to help evaluate the hazard, exposure, and risk of chemicals released to the environment and how workers, the general public, and the environment may be exposed to and affected by them.

  9. The contribution of household chemicals to environmental discharges via effluents: combining chemical and behavioural data.

    PubMed

    Richards, Samia; Paterson, Eric; Withers, Paul J A; Stutter, Marc

    2015-03-01

    Increased concentrations and loads of soluble, bioavailable forms of phosphorus (P) are a major cause of eutrophication in streams, rivers and lakes in many countries around the world. To implement P control measures, it is essential to identify P sources and their relative load contributions. A proportion of P loading generated from household wastewaters is derived from detergents yet the P compositions of the range of domestic detergents and their usage is poorly understood. To quantify P loads from household detergents, we analysed a large range of detergents and cleaning products commonly available in the UK and Europe, comparing regular and eco-labelled products. Chemical data were coupled with survey results on typical household detergents preferences and usage (n = 95 households). We also determined whether the major and trace element signatures of these household detergents could potentially be used as anthropogenic tracers in watercourses. The greatest P concentrations were found for regular dishwasher detergents (43-131 mg P/g detergent) whilst the range of P in eco-labelled dishwasher detergents was much lower (0.7-9.1 mg P/g detergent). Other household cleaning groups contained relatively smaller P concentrations. Considering the survey results, detergents' total P loading generated from one household using either regular or eco labelled products, was 0.414 and 0.021 kg P/year, respectively. Given a household occupancy of 2.7, the P load from all detergent use combined was 0.154 kg P/person/year of which the dishwasher contribution was 0.147 kg P/person/year. In terms of elemental signatures, (DWD) dishwasher detergents were significantly (P-value <0.001) different from other household cleaning products in their As, Na, TP, Si, Sr, SRP, Ti, Zn and Zr signatures. Na, P and B were all positively correlated with each other, indicating their potential use as a tracer suite for septic tank effluent in combination with other indices. We conclude that

  10. Chemical Transformation Simulator

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Chemical Transformation Simulator (CTS) is a web-based, high-throughput screening tool that automates the calculation and collection of physicochemical properties for an organic chemical of interest and its predicted products resulting from transformations in environmental sy...

  11. Performance predictions for solar-chemical convertors by computer simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luttmer, J. D.; Trachtenberg, I.

    1985-08-01

    A computer model which simulates the operation of Texas Instruments solar-chemical convertor (SSC) was developed. The model allows optimization of SCC processes, material, and configuration by facilitating decisions on trade-offs among ease of manufacturing, power conversion efficiency, and cost effectiveness. The model includes various algorithms which define the electrical, electrochemical, and resistance parameters and which describe the operation of the discrete components of the SCC. Results of the model which depict the effect of material and geometric changes on various parameters are presented. The computer-calculated operation is compared with experimentally observed hydrobromic acid electrolysis rates.

  12. Predicted thermochemistry for chemical conversions of 5-hydroxymethylfurfural.

    SciTech Connect

    Assary, R. S.; Redfern, P. C.; Hammond, J. R.; Greeley, J.; Curtiss, L. A.; Northwestern Univ.

    2010-09-10

    The thermochemistry of various chemical transformations of 5-hydroxy methyl furfural (HMF) were investigated using highly accurate Gaussian-4 (G4) theory. The conversion of HMF to nonane through aldol condensation, hydrogenation, and hydrogenolysis reactions was found to be thermodynamically favorable. The hydrogenation reactions involving the keto groups in the nonane reaction sequence were found to be enhanced at low temperatures and high pressures of H{sub 2}. The hydrogenation, selective oxidation, and hydration of HMF were also found to be thermodynamically favorable. Gas phase enthalpies of formation of all the intermediate compounds were calculated at the G4 level of theory and compared against existing experimental data.

  13. The decay of chemical weapons agents under environmental conditions

    SciTech Connect

    McGuire, R.R.; Haas, J.S.; Eagle, R.J.

    1993-04-09

    The rate and mechanism of decay of chemical agents in the environment was studied via live agent field trials at the chemical and Biological Defence Establishment, Porton Down, UK. The plan was to deposit the agents GD (Soman), VX, and H (sulfur mustard) on separate l-m{sup 2} plots on three successive days; i.e., Tuesday through Thursday. The depositions were to be made so as to give an areal concentration of 10 g/m{sup 2}. Four felt pads of approximately 25 cm{sup 2} each were placed at the corners of each of the test plots. These were subsequently extracted and analyzed by CBDE to determine the actual agent concentration. Samples for LLNL (two different types of soil, disks of silicone rubber gasket material, and short cylinders of concrete were to be contaminated and analyzed. Results are described.

  14. Molecular Ecology of Bacterial Population in Environmental Hazardous Chemical Control

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1993-01-14

    Pseudomonas putida F1 to measure toluene driven co-metabolic oxidation of TCE. (2) Demonstration of a new pathway for aerobic biodegradation of DDT...mediated by Alcaligenes eutrophus strain A5 previously shown competent for biodegradation of chlorobiphenyl congeners. (3) Confirmation that...the dynamics in microbial population density and activity during environmental biodegradation processes. Metabolism of PAHs. Pseudomonas £luorescens 5RL

  15. Prediction of rodent carcinogenic potential of naturally occurring chemicals in the human diet using high-throughput QSAR predictive modeling

    SciTech Connect

    Valerio, Luis G. . E-mail: luis.valerio@FDA.HHS.gov; Arvidson, Kirk B.; Chanderbhan, Ronald F.; Contrera, Joseph F.

    2007-07-01

    Consistent with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Critical Path Initiative, predictive toxicology software programs employing quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) models are currently under evaluation for regulatory risk assessment and scientific decision support for highly sensitive endpoints such as carcinogenicity, mutagenicity and reproductive toxicity. At the FDA's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition's Office of Food Additive Safety and the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research's Informatics and Computational Safety Analysis Staff (ICSAS), the use of computational SAR tools for both qualitative and quantitative risk assessment applications are being developed and evaluated. One tool of current interest is MDL-QSAR predictive discriminant analysis modeling of rodent carcinogenicity, which has been previously evaluated for pharmaceutical applications by the FDA ICSAS. The study described in this paper aims to evaluate the utility of this software to estimate the carcinogenic potential of small, organic, naturally occurring chemicals found in the human diet. In addition, a group of 19 known synthetic dietary constituents that were positive in rodent carcinogenicity studies served as a control group. In the test group of naturally occurring chemicals, 101 were found to be suitable for predictive modeling using this software's discriminant analysis modeling approach. Predictions performed on these compounds were compared to published experimental evidence of each compound's carcinogenic potential. Experimental evidence included relevant toxicological studies such as rodent cancer bioassays, rodent anti-carcinogenicity studies, genotoxic studies, and the presence of chemical structural alerts. Statistical indices of predictive performance were calculated to assess the utility of the predictive modeling method. Results revealed good predictive performance using this software's rodent carcinogenicity module of over 1200 chemicals

  16. Optical chemical sensors for environmental control and system management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tabacco, M. B.; Digiuseppe, T. G.

    Several fiber optic based chemical sensors have been developed for use in plant growth systems and enclosed life support systems. Optical chemical sensors offer several distinct advantages in terms of sensitivity, calibration stability, immunity to biofouling and electrical interference, and ease of multiplexing sensors for multipoint/multiparameter analysis. Also, the ability to locate fiber optic sensors in close proximity to plant roots or leaves should improve the measurement reliability by obviating the need for handling and transport which can compromise sample integrity. Polestar Technologies and GEO-CENTERS have developed and tested many types of optical chemical sensors which utilize novel glass and polymeric materials as the sensor substrate. Analytes are detected using immobilized colorimetric indication systems or molecular recognition elements. Typically transduction is via wavelength specific absorption changes with multiwavelength detection for drift compensation. Sensors have been developed for solution pH, NH_3, ethylene, CO_2, and dissolved metal ions. In addition, unique PC-compatible optoelectronic interfaces, as well as distributed measurement systems, so that integrated detection systems are now available. In this paper recent efforts to develop sensors for critical nutrient ions are presented.

  17. Molecular building blocks and their architecture in biologically/environmentally compatible soft matter chemical machinery.

    PubMed

    Toyota, Taro; Banno, Taisuke; Nitta, Sachiko; Takinoue, Masahiro; Nomoto, Tomonori; Natsume, Yuno; Matsumura, Shuichi; Fujinami, Masanori

    2014-01-01

    This review briefly summarizes recent developments in the construction of biologically/environmentally compatible chemical machinery composed of soft matter. Since environmental and living systems are open systems, chemical machinery must continuously fulfill its functions not only through the influx and generation of molecules but also via the degradation and dissipation of molecules. If the degradation or dissipation of soft matter molecular building blocks and biomaterial molecules/polymers can be achieved, soft matter particles composed of them can be used to realize chemical machinery such as selfpropelled droplets, drug delivery carriers, tissue regeneration scaffolds, protocell models, cell-/tissuemarkers, and molecular computing systems.

  18. Mechanisms of environmental chemicals that enable the cancer hallmark of evasion of growth suppression

    PubMed Central

    Nahta, Rita; Al-Mulla, Fahd; Al-Temaimi, Rabeah; Amedei, Amedeo; Andrade-Vieira, Rafaela; Bay, Sarah; G. Brown, Dustin; Calaf, Gloria M.; Castellino, Robert C.; Cohen-Solal, Karine A.; Colacci, Annamaria; Cruickshanks, Nichola; Dent, Paul; Di Fiore, Riccardo; Forte, Stefano; Goldberg, Gary S.; Hamid, Roslida A.; Krishnan, Harini; Laird, Dale W.; Lasfar, Ahmed; Marignani, Paola A.; Memeo, Lorenzo; Mondello, Chiara; Naus, Christian C.; Ponce-Cusi, Richard; Raju, Jayadev; Roy, Debasish; Roy, Rabindra; P. Ryan, Elizabeth; Salem, Hosni K.; Scovassi, A. Ivana; Singh, Neetu; Vaccari, Monica; Vento, Renza; Vondráček, Jan; Wade, Mark; Woodrick, Jordan; Bisson, William H.

    2015-01-01

    As part of the Halifax Project, this review brings attention to the potential effects of environmental chemicals on important molecular and cellular regulators of the cancer hallmark of evading growth suppression. Specifically, we review the mechanisms by which cancer cells escape the growth-inhibitory signals of p53, retinoblastoma protein, transforming growth factor-beta, gap junctions and contact inhibition. We discuss the effects of selected environmental chemicals on these mechanisms of growth inhibition and cross-reference the effects of these chemicals in other classical cancer hallmarks. PMID:26106139

  19. Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals and Oil and Natural Gas Operations: Potential Environmental Contamination and Recommendations to Assess Complex Environmental Mixtures

    PubMed Central

    Kassotis, Christopher D.; Tillitt, Donald E.; Lin, Chung-Ho; McElroy, Jane A.; Nagel, Susan C.

    2015-01-01

    Background Hydraulic fracturing technologies, developed over the last 65 years, have only recently been combined with horizontal drilling to unlock oil and gas reserves previously deemed inaccessible. Although these technologies have dramatically increased domestic oil and natural gas production, they have also raised concerns for the potential contamination of local water supplies with the approximately 1,000 chemicals that are used throughout the process, including many known or suspected endocrine-disrupting chemicals. Objectives We discuss the need for an endocrine component to health assessments for drilling-dense regions in the context of hormonal and antihormonal activities for chemicals used. Methods We discuss the literature on a) surface and groundwater contamination by oil and gas extraction operations, and b) potential human exposure, particularly in the context of the total hormonal and antihormonal activities present in surface and groundwater from natural and anthropogenic sources; we also discuss initial analytical results and critical knowledge gaps. Discussion In light of the potential for environmental release of oil and gas chemicals that can disrupt hormone receptor systems, we recommend methods for assessing complex hormonally active environmental mixtures. Conclusions We describe a need for an endocrine-centric component for overall health assessments and provide information supporting the idea that using such a component will help explain reported adverse health trends as well as help develop recommendations for environmental impact assessments and monitoring programs. Citation Kassotis CD, Tillitt DE, Lin CH, McElroy JA, Nagel SC. 2016. Endocrine-disrupting chemicals and oil and natural gas operations: potential environmental contamination and recommendations to assess complex environmental mixtures. Environ Health Perspect 124:256–264; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1409535 PMID:26311476

  20. Significance of vapor phase chemical reactions on CVD rates predicted by chemically frozen and local thermochemical equilibrium boundary layer theories

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gokoglu, Suleyman A.

    1988-01-01

    This paper investigates the role played by vapor-phase chemical reactions on CVD rates by comparing the results of two extreme theories developed to predict CVD mass transport rates in the absence of interfacial kinetic barrier: one based on chemically frozen boundary layer and the other based on local thermochemical equilibrium. Both theories consider laminar convective-diffusion boundary layers at high Reynolds numbers and include thermal (Soret) diffusion and variable property effects. As an example, Na2SO4 deposition was studied. It was found that gas phase reactions have no important role on Na2SO4 deposition rates and on the predictions of the theories. The implications of the predictions of the two theories to other CVD systems are discussed.

  1. Students' Predictions about the Sensory Properties of Chemical Compounds: Additive versus Emergent Frameworks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Talanquer, Vicente

    2008-01-01

    We investigated general chemistry students' intuitive ideas about the expected properties of the products of a chemical reaction. In particular, we analyzed college chemistry students' predictions about the color, smell, and taste of the products of chemical reactions represented at the molecular level. The study was designed to explore the extent…

  2. CURRENT STATE OF PREDICTING THE RESPIRATORY ALLERGY POTENTIAL OF CHEMICALS: WHAT ARE THE ISSUES?

    EPA Science Inventory

    Current State of Predicting the Respiratory Allergy Potential of Chemicals: What Are the Issues? M I. Gilmour1 and S. E. Loveless2, 1USEPA, Research Triangle Park, NC and 2DuPont Haskell Laboratory, Newark, DE.

    Many chemicals are clearly capable of eliciting immune respon...

  3. Estimation of Physical Properties and Chemical Reactivity Parameters of Organic Compounds for Environmental Modeling by SPARC

    EPA Science Inventory

    Mathematical models for predicting the transport and fate of pollutants in the environment require reactivity parameter values that is value of the physical and chemical constants that govern reactivity. Although empirical structure activity relationships have been developed th...

  4. Mapping Proteome-Wide Targets of Environmental Chemicals using Reactivity-Based Chemoproteomic Platforms

    PubMed Central

    Medina-Cleghorn, Daniel; Bateman, Leslie A.; Ford, Breanna; Heslin, Ann; Fisher, Karl J.; Dalvie, Esha D.; Nomura, Daniel K.

    2015-01-01

    We are exposed to a growing number of chemicals in our environment, most of which have not been characterized in terms of their toxicological potential or mechanisms. Here, we employ a chemoproteomic platform to map the cysteine reactivity of environmental chemicals using reactivity-based probes to mine for hyper-reactive hotspots across the proteome. We show that environmental contaminants such as monomethylarsonous acid and widely used pesticides such as chlorothalonil and chloropicrin possess common reactivity with a distinct set of proteins. Many of these proteins are involved in key metabolic processes, suggesting that these targets may be particularly sensitive to environmental electrophiles. We show that the widely used fungicide chlorothalonil specifically inhibits several metabolic enzymes involved in fatty acid metabolism and energetics, leading to dysregulated lipid metabolism in mice. Our results underscore the utility of using reactivity-based chemoproteomic platforms to uncover novel mechanistic insights into the toxicity of environmental chemicals. PMID:26496688

  5. Improvements to enforcement of multilateral environmental agreements to control international shipments of chemicals and wastes.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ning; Somboon, Vira; Wun'gaeo, Surichai; Middleton, Carl; Tingsabadh, Charit; Limjirakan, Sangchan

    2016-06-01

    Illegal trade in hazardous waste and harmful chemicals has caused severe damage on human health and the environment, and brought big challenges to countries to meet their commitments to related multilateral environmental agreements. Synergy-building, like organising law enforcement operations, is critical to address illegal trade in waste and chemicals, and further improve the effectiveness of environmental enforcement. This article discusses how and why law enforcement operations can help countries to implement chemical and waste-related multilateral environmental agreements in a more efficient and effective way. The research explores key barriers and factors for organising law enforcement operations, and recommends methods to improve law enforcement operations to address illegal trade in hazardous waste and harmful chemicals.

  6. [Application of near infrared reflectance spectroscopy to predict meat chemical compositions: a review].

    PubMed

    Tao, Lin-Li; Yang, Xiu-Juan; Deng, Jun-Ming; Zhang, Xi

    2013-11-01

    In contrast to conventional methods for the determination of meat chemical composition, near infrared reflectance spectroscopy enables rapid, simple, secure and simultaneous assessment of numerous meat properties. The present review focuses on the use of near infrared reflectance spectroscopy to predict meat chemical compositions. The potential of near infrared reflectance spectroscopy to predict crude protein, intramuscular fat, fatty acid, moisture, ash, myoglobin and collagen of beef, pork, chicken and lamb is reviewed. This paper discusses existing questions and reasons in the current research. According to the published results, although published results vary considerably, they suggest that near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy shows a great potential to replace the expensive and time-consuming chemical analysis of meat composition. In particular, under commercial conditions where simultaneous measurements of different chemical components are required, near infrared reflectance spectroscopy is expected to be the method of choice. The majority of studies selected feature-related wavelengths using principal components regression, developed the calibration model using partial least squares and modified partial least squares, and estimated the prediction accuracy by means of cross-validation using the same sample set previously used for the calibration. Meat fatty acid composition predicted by near-infrared spectroscopy and non-destructive prediction and visualization of chemical composition in meat using near-infrared hyperspectral imaging and multivariate regression are the hot studying field now. On the other hand, near infrared reflectance spectroscopy shows great difference for predicting different attributes of meat quality which are closely related to the selection of calibration sample set, preprocessing of near-infrared spectroscopy and modeling approach. Sample preparation also has an important effect on the reliability of NIR prediction; in particular

  7. Environmental Chemical Analysis (by B. B. Kebbekus and S. Mitra)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bower, Reviewed By Nathan W.

    1999-11-01

    This text helps to fill a void in the market, as there are relatively few undergraduate instrumental analysis texts designed specifically for the expanding population of environmental science students. R. N. Reeve's introductory, open-learning Environmental Analysis (Wiley, 1994) is one of the few, and it is aimed at a lower level and is less appropriate for traditional classroom study. Kebbekus and Mitra's book appears to be an update of I. Marr and M. Cresser's excellent 1983 text by the same name (and also published under the Chapman and Hall imprint). It assumes no background in instrumental methods of analysis but it does depend upon a good general chemistry background in kinetic and equilibrium calculations and the standard laboratory techniques found in a classical introduction to analytical chemistry. The slant taken by the authors is aimed more toward engineers, not only in the choice of topics, but also in how they are presented. For example, the statistical significance tests presented follow an engineering format rather than the standard used in analytical chemistry. This approach does not detract from the book's clarity. The writing style is concise and the book is generally well written. The earlier text, which has become somewhat of a classic, took the unusual step of teaching the instruments in the context of their environmental application. It was divided into sections on the "atmosphere", the "hydrosphere", the "lithosphere", and the "biosphere". This text takes a similar approach in the second half, with chapters on methods for air, water, and solid samples. Users who intend to use the book as a text instead of a reference will appreciate the addition of chapters in the first half of the book on spectroscopic, chromatographic, and mass spectrometric methods. The six chapters in these two parts of the book along with four chapters scattered throughout on environmental measurements, sampling, sample preparation, and quality assurance make a nice

  8. The dilemma in prioritizing chemicals for environmental analysis: known versus unknown hazards.

    PubMed

    Anna, Sobek; Sofia, Bejgarn; Christina, Rudén; Magnus, Breitholtz

    2016-08-10

    A major challenge for society is to manage the risks posed by the many chemicals continuously emitted to the environment. All chemicals in production and use cannot be monitored and science-based strategies for prioritization are essential. In this study we review available data to investigate which substances are included in environmental monitoring programs and published research studies reporting analyses of chemicals in Baltic Sea fish between 2000 and 2012. Our aim is to contribute to the discussion of priority settings in environmental chemical monitoring and research, which is closely linked to chemical management. In total, 105 different substances or substance groups were analyzed in Baltic Sea fish. Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were the most studied substances or substance groups. The majority, 87%, of all analyses comprised 20% of the substances or substance groups, whereas 46 substance groups (44%) were analyzed only once. Almost three quarters of all analyses regarded a POP-substance (persistent organic pollutant). These results demonstrate that the majority of analyses on environmental contaminants in Baltic Sea fish concern a small number of already regulated chemicals. Legacy pollutants such as POPs pose a high risk to the Baltic Sea due to their hazardous properties. Yet, there may be a risk that prioritizations for chemical analyses are biased based on the knowns of the past. Such biases may lead to society failing in identifying risks posed by yet unknown hazardous chemicals. Alternative and complementary ways to identify priority chemicals are needed. More transparent communication between risk assessments performed as part of the risk assessment process within REACH and monitoring programs, and information on chemicals contained in consumer articles, would offer ways to identify chemicals for environmental analysis.

  9. Predicting diffusion coefficients of chemicals in and through packaging materials.

    PubMed

    Fang, Xiaoyi; Vitrac, Olivier

    2017-01-22

    Most of the physicochemical properties in polymers such as activity and partition coefficients, diffusion coefficients, and their activation with temperature are accessible to direct calculations from first principles. Such predictions are particularly relevant for food packaging as they can be used (1) to demonstrate the compliance or safety of numerous polymer materials and of their constitutive substances (e.g. additives, residues…), when they are used: as containers, coatings, sealants, gaskets, printing inks, etc. (2) or to predict the indirect contamination of food by pollutants (e.g. from recycled polymers, storage ambiance…) (3) or to assess the plasticization of materials in contact by food constituents (e.g. fat matter, aroma…). This review article summarizes the classical and last mechanistic descriptions of diffusion in polymers and discusses the reliability of semi-empirical approaches used for compliance testing both in EU and US. It is concluded that simulation of diffusion in or through polymers is not limited to worst-case assumptions but could also be applied to real cases for risk assessment, designing packaging with low leaching risk or to synthesize plastic additives with low diffusion rates.

  10. Sequential chemical extraction for a phosphogypsum environmental impact evaluation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gennari, R. F.; Garcia, I.; Medina, N. H.; Silveira, M. A. G.

    2013-05-01

    Phosphogypsum (PG) is gypsum generated during phosphoric acid production. PG is stocked in large stacks or accumulated in lakes; it contains heavy metals and naturally occurring radioactive elements. The metal contamination may affect the functionality, sustainability and biodiversity of ecosystems. In this work, PG samples were analyzed by Plasma Spectrometry. Total metal content and in the extractable fraction of chemical elements were determined. For K, Ni, Zn, Cr, Cd, Ba, Pb and U, the results obtained are lower than those obtained in a Idaho plant are including and also lower than those found in the soil, indicating this PG sample analyzed probably will not cause any additional metal neither natural radiation contamination.

  11. A binary classifier for prediction of the types of metabolic pathway of chemicals.

    PubMed

    Fang, Yemin; Chen, Lei

    2016-12-15

    The study of metabolic pathway is one of the most important fields in biochemistry. Good comprehension of the metabolic pathway system is helpful to uncover the mechanism of some fundamental biological processes. Because chemicals are part of the main components of the metabolic pathway, correct identification of which metabolic pathways a given chemical can participate in is an important step for understanding the metabolic pathway system. Most previous methods only considered the chemical information, which tried to deal with a multi-label classification problem of assigning chemicals to proper metabolic pathways. In this study, the pathway information was also employed, thereby transforming the problem into a binary classification problem of identifying the pair of chemicals and metabolic pathways, i.e., a chemical and a metabolic pathway was paired as a sample to be considered in this study. To construct the prediction model, the association between chemical pathway type pairs was evaluated by integrating the association between chemicals and association between pathway types. The support vector machine was adopted as the prediction engine. The extensive tests show that the constructed model yields good performance with total prediction accuracy around 0.878. Furthermore, the comparison results indicate that our model is quite effective and suitable for the identification of whether a given chemical can participate in a given metabolic pathway.

  12. Computational prediction of microRNA networks incorporating environmental toxicity and disease etiology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Jie; Wu, Zengrui; Cheng, Feixiong; Li, Weihua; Liu, Guixia; Tang, Yun

    2014-07-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play important roles in multiple biological processes and have attracted much scientific attention recently. Their expression can be altered by environmental factors (EFs), which are associated with many diseases. Identification of the phenotype-genotype relationships among miRNAs, EFs, and diseases at the network level will help us to better understand toxicology mechanisms and disease etiologies. In this study, we developed a computational systems toxicology framework to predict new associations among EFs, miRNAs and diseases by integrating EF structure similarity and disease phenotypic similarity. Specifically, three comprehensive bipartite networks: EF-miRNA, EF-disease and miRNA-disease associations, were constructed to build predictive models. The areas under the receiver operating characteristic curves using 10-fold cross validation ranged from 0.686 to 0.910. Furthermore, we successfully inferred novel EF-miRNA-disease networks in two case studies for breast cancer and cigarette smoke. Collectively, our methods provide a reliable and useful tool for the study of chemical risk assessment and disease etiology involving miRNAs.

  13. Computational prediction of microRNA networks incorporating environmental toxicity and disease etiology

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jie; Wu, Zengrui; Cheng, Feixiong; Li, Weihua; Liu, Guixia; Tang, Yun

    2014-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play important roles in multiple biological processes and have attracted much scientific attention recently. Their expression can be altered by environmental factors (EFs), which are associated with many diseases. Identification of the phenotype-genotype relationships among miRNAs, EFs, and diseases at the network level will help us to better understand toxicology mechanisms and disease etiologies. In this study, we developed a computational systems toxicology framework to predict new associations among EFs, miRNAs and diseases by integrating EF structure similarity and disease phenotypic similarity. Specifically, three comprehensive bipartite networks: EF-miRNA, EF-disease and miRNA-disease associations, were constructed to build predictive models. The areas under the receiver operating characteristic curves using 10-fold cross validation ranged from 0.686 to 0.910. Furthermore, we successfully inferred novel EF-miRNA-disease networks in two case studies for breast cancer and cigarette smoke. Collectively, our methods provide a reliable and useful tool for the study of chemical risk assessment and disease etiology involving miRNAs. PMID:24992957

  14. USE OF A CONVECTION-DIFFUSION MODEL TO UNDERSTAND GASTROINTESTINAL ABSORPTION OF ENVIRONMENTALLY-RELEVANT CHEMICALS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Understanding the factors that affect the gastrointestinal absorption of chemicals is important to predicting the delivered systemic dose of chemicals following exposure in food, water, and other media. Two factors of particular interest are the effects of a matrix to which th...

  15. Analysis of Environmental Chemical Mixtures and Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Risk in the NCI-SEER NHL Study

    PubMed Central

    Czarnota, Jenna; Gennings, Chris; Colt, Joanne S.; De Roos, Anneclaire J.; Cerhan, James R.; Severson, Richard K.; Hartge, Patricia; Ward, Mary H.

    2015-01-01

    Background There are several suspected environmental risk factors for non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). The associations between NHL and environmental chemical exposures have typically been evaluated for individual chemicals (i.e., one-by-one). Objectives We determined the association between a mixture of 27 correlated chemicals measured in house dust and NHL risk. Methods We conducted a population-based case–control study of NHL in four National Cancer Institute–Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results centers—Detroit, Michigan; Iowa; Los Angeles County, California; and Seattle, Washington—from 1998 to 2000. We used weighted quantile sum (WQS) regression to model the association of a mixture of chemicals and risk of NHL. The WQS index was a sum of weighted quartiles for 5 polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), 7 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and 15 pesticides. We estimated chemical mixture weights and effects for study sites combined and for each site individually, and also for histologic subtypes of NHL. Results The WQS index was statistically significantly associated with NHL overall [odds ratio (OR) = 1.30; 95% CI: 1.08, 1.56; p = 0.006; for one quartile increase] and in the study sites of Detroit (OR = 1.71; 95% CI: 1.02, 2.92; p = 0.045), Los Angeles (OR = 1.44; 95% CI: 1.00, 2.08; p = 0.049), and Iowa (OR = 1.76; 95% CI: 1.23, 2.53; p = 0.002). The index was marginally statistically significant in Seattle (OR = 1.39; 95% CI: 0.97, 1.99; p = 0.071). The most highly weighted chemicals for predicting risk overall were PCB congener 180 and propoxur. Highly weighted chemicals varied by study site; PCBs were more highly weighted in Detroit, and pesticides were more highly weighted in Iowa. Conclusions An index of chemical mixtures was significantly associated with NHL. Our results show the importance of evaluating chemical mixtures when studying cancer risk. Citation Czarnota J, Gennings C, Colt JS, De Roos AJ, Cerhan JR, Severson RK, Hartge P, Ward MH

  16. Predicting carcinogenicity of diverse chemicals using probabilistic neural network modeling approaches

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, Kunwar P.; Gupta, Shikha; Rai, Premanjali

    2013-10-15

    Robust global models capable of discriminating positive and non-positive carcinogens; and predicting carcinogenic potency of chemicals in rodents were developed. The dataset of 834 structurally diverse chemicals extracted from Carcinogenic Potency Database (CPDB) was used which contained 466 positive and 368 non-positive carcinogens. Twelve non-quantum mechanical molecular descriptors were derived. Structural diversity of the chemicals and nonlinearity in the data were evaluated using Tanimoto similarity index and Brock–Dechert–Scheinkman statistics. Probabilistic neural network (PNN) and generalized regression neural network (GRNN) models were constructed for classification and function optimization problems using the carcinogenicity end point in rat. Validation of the models was performed using the internal and external procedures employing a wide series of statistical checks. PNN constructed using five descriptors rendered classification accuracy of 92.09% in complete rat data. The PNN model rendered classification accuracies of 91.77%, 80.70% and 92.08% in mouse, hamster and pesticide data, respectively. The GRNN constructed with nine descriptors yielded correlation coefficient of 0.896 between the measured and predicted carcinogenic potency with mean squared error (MSE) of 0.44 in complete rat data. The rat carcinogenicity model (GRNN) applied to the mouse and hamster data yielded correlation coefficient and MSE of 0.758, 0.71 and 0.760, 0.46, respectively. The results suggest for wide applicability of the inter-species models in predicting carcinogenic potency of chemicals. Both the PNN and GRNN (inter-species) models constructed here can be useful tools in predicting the carcinogenicity of new chemicals for regulatory purposes. - Graphical abstract: Figure (a) shows classification accuracies (positive and non-positive carcinogens) in rat, mouse, hamster, and pesticide data yielded by optimal PNN model. Figure (b) shows generalization and predictive

  17. High pressure electrides: a predictive chemical and physical theory.

    PubMed

    Miao, Mao-Sheng; Hoffmann, Roald

    2014-04-15

    Electrides, in which electrons occupy interstitial regions in the crystal and behave as anions, appear as new phases for many elements (and compounds) under high pressure. We propose a unified theory of high pressure electrides (HPEs) by treating electrons in the interstitial sites as filling the quantized orbitals of the interstitial space enclosed by the surrounding atom cores, generating what we call an interstitial quasi-atom, ISQ. With increasing pressure, the energies of the valence orbitals of atoms increase more significantly than the ISQ levels, due to repulsion, exclusion by the atom cores, effectively giving the valence electrons less room in which to move. At a high enough pressure, which depends on the element and its orbitals, the frontier atomic electron may become higher in energy than the ISQ, resulting in electron transfer to the interstitial space and the formation of an HPE. By using a He lattice model to compress (with minimal orbital interaction at moderate pressures between the surrounding He and the contained atoms or molecules) atoms and an interstitial space, we are able to semiquantitatively explain and predict the propensity of various elements to form HPEs. The slopes in energy of various orbitals with pressure (s > p > d) are essential for identifying trends across the entire Periodic Table. We predict that the elements forming HPEs under 500 GPa will be Li, Na (both already known to do so), Al, and, near the high end of this pressure range, Mg, Si, Tl, In, and Pb. Ferromagnetic electrides for the heavier alkali metals, suggested by Pickard and Needs, potentially compete with transformation to d-group metals.

  18. Endocrine-disrupting chemicals and oil and natural gas operations: Potential environmental contamination and recommendations to assess complex environmental mixtures

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kassotis, Christopher D.; Tillitt, Donald E.; Lin, Chung-Ho; McElroy, Jane A.; Nagel, Susan C.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Hydraulic fracturing technologies, developed over the last 65 years, have only recently been combined with horizontal drilling to unlock oil and gas reserves previously deemed inaccessible. While these technologies have dramatically increased domestic oil and natural gas production, they have also raised concerns for the potential contamination of local water supplies with the approximately 1,000 chemicals used throughout the process, including many known or suspected endocrine-disrupting chemicals.Objectives: We discuss the need for an endocrine component to health assessments for drilling-dense regions in the context of hormonal and anti-hormonal activities for chemicals used.Methods: We discuss the literature on 1) surface and ground water contamination by oil and gas extraction operations, and 2) potential human exposure, particularly in context of the total hormonal and anti-hormonal activities present in surface and ground water from natural and anthropogenic sources, with initial analytical results and critical knowledge gaps discussed.Discussion: In light of the potential for environmental release of oil and gas chemicals that can disrupt hormone receptor systems, we recommend methods for assessing complex hormonally active environmental mixtures.Conclusions: We describe a need for an endocrine-centric component for overall health assessments and provide supporting information that using this may help explain reported adverse health trends as well as help develop recommendations for environmental impact assessments and monitoring programs.

  19. QSAR prediction of estrogen activity for a large set of diverse chemicals under the guidance of OECD principles.

    PubMed

    Liu, Huanxiang; Papa, Ester; Gramatica, Paola

    2006-11-01

    A large number of environmental chemicals, known as endocrine-disrupting chemicals, are suspected of disrupting endocrine functions by mimicking or antagonizing natural hormones, and such chemicals may pose a serious threat to the health of humans and wildlife. They are thought to act through a variety of mechanisms, mainly estrogen-receptor-mediated mechanisms of toxicity. However, it is practically impossible to perform thorough toxicological tests on all potential xenoestrogens, and thus, the quantitative structure--activity relationship (QSAR) provides a promising method for the estimation of a compound's estrogenic activity. Here, QSAR models of the estrogen receptor binding affinity of a large data set of heterogeneous chemicals have been built using theoretical molecular descriptors, giving full consideration to the new OECD principles in regulation for QSAR acceptability, during model construction and assessment. An unambiguous multiple linear regression (MLR) algorithm was used to build the models, and model predictive ability was validated by both internal and external validation. The applicability domain was checked by the leverage approach to verify prediction reliability. The results obtained using several validation paths indicate that the proposed QSAR model is robust and satisfactory, and can provide a feasible and practical tool for the rapid screening of the estrogen activity of organic compounds.

  20. [The food legislation evaluation of environmental chemicals in freshwater fish].

    PubMed

    Krüger, K E

    1990-07-01

    During the last 1 1/2 decades different regulatory limits have been given to value pollutants in fish under food-legal aspects. Their requested target, which consists of an effective consumer's protection however has been missed by various reasons: The production and distribution of environmental pollutants cannot be suppressed by limits for food. The selective elimination of limit-exceeding individuals from a lot is impossible. Treating both, natural pollutants like geogenic mercury and anthropogenic ones similar seems to be indefensible with regard to food law. Therefore proposals are made to rule only anthropogenic pollutants by law, when regulatory limits are planned to be supplemented. In case of natural distribution less stringent advisory limits seem to be more suitable.

  1. Mutagenesis and differentiation induction in mammalian cells by environmental chemicals

    SciTech Connect

    Friedman, J.; Huberman, E.

    1980-01-01

    These studies indicate that in agreement with the somatic mutation hypothesis, chemical carcinogens: (1) are mutagenic for mammalian cells as tested in the cell-mediated assay; (2) the degree of mutagenicity is correlated with their degree of carcinogenicity; (3) that at least in cases when analyzed carefully the metabolites responsible for mutagenesis are also responsible for initiating the carcinogenic event; and (4) that a cell organ type specificity can be established using the cell-mediated assay. Studies with HL-60 cells and HO melanoma cells and those of others suggest that tumor-promoting phorbol diesters can alter cell differentiation in various cell types and that the degree of the observed alteration in the differentiation properties may be related to the potency of the phorbol esters. Thus these and similar systems may serve as models for both studies and identification of certain types of tumor promoting agents. (ERB)

  2. Development of computer program ENMASK for prediction of residual environmental masking-noise spectra, from any three independent environmental parameters

    SciTech Connect

    Chang, Y.-S.; Liebich, R. E.; Chun, K. C.

    2000-03-31

    Residual environmental sound can mask intrusive4 (unwanted) sound. It is a factor that can affect noise impacts and must be considered both in noise-impact studies and in noise-mitigation designs. Models for quantitative prediction of sensation level (audibility) and psychological effects of intrusive noise require an input with 1/3 octave-band spectral resolution of environmental masking noise. However, the majority of published residual environmental masking-noise data are given with either octave-band frequency resolution or only single A-weighted decibel values. A model has been developed that enables estimation of 1/3 octave-band residual environmental masking-noise spectra and relates certain environmental parameters to A-weighted sound level. This model provides a correlation among three environmental conditions: measured residual A-weighted sound-pressure level, proximity to a major roadway, and population density. Cited field-study data were used to compute the most probable 1/3 octave-band sound-pressure spectrum corresponding to any selected one of these three inputs. In turn, such spectra can be used as an input to models for prediction of noise impacts. This paper discusses specific algorithms included in the newly developed computer program ENMASK. In addition, the relative audibility of the environmental masking-noise spectra at different A-weighted sound levels is discussed, which is determined by using the methodology of program ENAUDIBL.

  3. The Matthew effect in environmental science publication: A bibliometric analysis of chemical substances in journal articles

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background While environmental research addresses scientific questions of possible societal relevance, it is unclear to what degree research focuses on environmental chemicals in need of documentation for risk assessment purposes. Methods In a bibliometric analysis, we used SciFinder to extract Chemical Abstract Service (CAS) numbers for chemicals addressed by publications in the 78 major environmental science journals during 2000-2009. The Web of Science was used to conduct title searches to determine long-term trends for prominent substances and substances considered in need of research attention. Results The 119,636 journal articles found had 760,056 CAS number links during 2000-2009. The top-20 environmental chemicals consisted of metals, (chlorinated) biphenyls, polyaromatic hydrocarbons, benzene, and ethanol and contributed 12% toward the total number of links- Each of the top-20 substances was covered by 2,000-10,000 articles during the decade. The numbers for the 10-year period were similar to the total numbers of pre-2000 articles on the same chemicals. However, substances considered a high priority from a regulatory viewpoint, due to lack of documentation, showed very low publication rates. The persistence in the scientific literature of the top-20 chemicals was only weakly related to their publication in journals with a high impact factor, but some substances achieved high citation rates. Conclusions The persistence of some environmental chemicals in the scientific literature may be due to a 'Matthew' principle of maintaining prominence for the very reason of having been well researched. Such bias detracts from the societal needs for documentation on less well known environmental hazards, and it may also impact negatively on the potentials for innovation and discovery in research. PMID:22074398

  4. Can Exposure to Environmental Chemicals Increase the Risk of Diabetes Type 1 Development?

    PubMed Central

    Stene, Lars Christian

    2015-01-01

    Type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) is an autoimmune disease, where destruction of beta-cells causes insulin deficiency. The incidence of T1DM has increased in the last decades and cannot entirely be explained by genetic predisposition. Several environmental factors are suggested to promote T1DM, like early childhood enteroviral infections and nutritional factors, but the evidence is inconclusive. Prenatal and early life exposure to environmental pollutants like phthalates, bisphenol A, perfluorinated compounds, PCBs, dioxins, toxicants, and air pollutants can have negative effects on the developing immune system, resulting in asthma-like symptoms and increased susceptibility to childhood infections. In this review the associations between environmental chemical exposure and T1DM development is summarized. Although information on environmental chemicals as possible triggers for T1DM is sparse, we conclude that it is plausible that environmental chemicals can contribute to T1DM development via impaired pancreatic beta-cell and immune-cell functions and immunomodulation. Several environmental factors and chemicals could act together to trigger T1DM development in genetically susceptible individuals, possibly via hormonal or epigenetic alterations. Further observational T1DM cohort studies and animal exposure experiments are encouraged. PMID:25883945

  5. Using Chemical Reaction Kinetics to Predict Optimal Antibiotic Treatment Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Abel zur Wiesch, Pia; Cohen, Ted

    2017-01-01

    Identifying optimal dosing of antibiotics has proven challenging—some antibiotics are most effective when they are administered periodically at high doses, while others work best when minimizing concentration fluctuations. Mechanistic explanations for why antibiotics differ in their optimal dosing are lacking, limiting our ability to predict optimal therapy and leading to long and costly experiments. We use mathematical models that describe both bacterial growth and intracellular antibiotic-target binding to investigate the effects of fluctuating antibiotic concentrations on individual bacterial cells and bacterial populations. We show that physicochemical parameters, e.g. the rate of drug transmembrane diffusion and the antibiotic-target complex half-life are sufficient to explain which treatment strategy is most effective. If the drug-target complex dissociates rapidly, the antibiotic must be kept constantly at a concentration that prevents bacterial replication. If antibiotics cross bacterial cell envelopes slowly to reach their target, there is a delay in the onset of action that may be reduced by increasing initial antibiotic concentration. Finally, slow drug-target dissociation and slow diffusion out of cells act to prolong antibiotic effects, thereby allowing for less frequent dosing. Our model can be used as a tool in the rational design of treatment for bacterial infections. It is easily adaptable to other biological systems, e.g. HIV, malaria and cancer, where the effects of physiological fluctuations of drug concentration are also poorly understood. PMID:28060813

  6. Study of improved methods for predicting chemical equilibria

    SciTech Connect

    Lenz, T.G.; Vaughan, J.D.

    1992-06-01

    The objective of our research has been to develop computational methods that have the capability of accurately predicting equilibrium constants of typical organic reactions in gas and liquid solution phases. We have chosen Diels-Alder reactions as prototypic systems for the investigation, chiefly because there are an adequate number of reported equilibrium constants for the candidate reactions in both gas and solution phases, which data provides a suitable basis for tests of the developed computational methods. Our approach has been to calculate the standard enthalpies of formation ({Delta}H{sub f}{sup 0}) at 298.15K and the standard thermodynamic functions (S{sup 0}, Cp{sup 0}, and (H{sup 0}-H{sub 0}{sup 0})/T) for a range of temperatures for reactants and products, and from these properties to calculate standard enthalpies, entropies, Gibbs free energies, and equilibrium constants ({Delta}H{sub T}{sup 0}, {Delta}S{sub T}{sup 0}, and K{sub a}) at various temperatures for the chosen reaction.

  7. Prediction of the rodent carcinogenicity of organic compounds from their chemical structures using the FALS method.

    PubMed Central

    Moriguchi, I; Hirano, H; Hirono, S

    1996-01-01

    Fuzzy adaptive least-squares (FALS), a pattern recognition method recently developed in our laboratory for correlating structure with activity rating, was used to generate quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) models on the carcinogenicity of organic compounds of several chemical classes. Using the predictive models obtained from the chemical class-based FALS QSAR approach, the rodent carcinogenicity or noncarcinogenicity of a group of organic chemicals currently being tested by the U.S. National Toxicology Program was estimated from their chemical structures. PMID:8933054

  8. Linking empirical estimates of body burden of environmental chemicals and wellness using NHANES data.

    PubMed

    Gennings, Chris; Ellis, Rhonda; Ritter, Joseph K

    2012-02-01

    Biomonitoring of industrial chemicals in human tissues and fluids has shown that all people carry a "body burden" of synthetic chemicals. Although measurement of an environmental chemical in a person's tissues/fluids is an indication of exposure, it does not necessarily mean the exposure concentration is sufficient to cause an adverse effect. Since humans are exposed to multiple chemicals, there may be a combination effect (e.g., additive, synergistic) associated with low-level exposures to multiple classes of contaminants, which may impact a variety of organ systems. The objective of this research is to link measures of body burden of environmental chemicals and a "holistic" measure of wellness. The approach is demonstrated using biomonitoring data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES). Forty-two chemicals were selected for analysis based on their detection levels. Six biological pathway-specific indices were evaluated using groups of chemicals associated with each pathway. Five of the six pathways were negatively associated with wellness. Three non-zero interaction terms were detected which may provide empirical evidence of crosstalk across pathways. The approach identified five of the 42 chemicals from a variety of classes (metals, pesticides, furans, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) as accounting for 71% of the weight linking body burden to wellness. Significant interactions were detected indicating the effect of smoking is exacerbated by body burden of environmental chemicals. Use of a holistic index on both sides of the exposure-health equation is a novel and promising empirical "systems biology" approach to risk evaluation of complex environmental exposures.

  9. Influence of chemical and environmental stressors on acute cadmium toxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Baer, K.N.; Benson, W.H.

    1987-01-01

    Previous investigations have demonstrated that the cytosolic protein metallothionein (MT) is induced not only by exposure to certain heavy metals but also by a variety of other factors, including environmental stress. While MT synthesis has been observed with exposure to cold temperatures, there is a paucity of data concerning the influence of cold on heavy-metal toxicity. The present investigation focused on the influence of metal and cold pretreatments on the acute toxicity of cadmium. Mortalities of 80% and 100% were observed for mice orally administered challenge doses of 100 mg Cd/kg and 150 mg Cd/kg, respectively. To determine a protective cadmium pretreatment dose, animals were administered 2.5, 5, 10, 20, 25, and 50 mg Cd/kg 24 h prior to cadmium challenge. In animals pretreated with 10 mg Cd/kg, mortalities of 20% and 70% were observed with the respective challenge doses. Immediately following cold stress (4/sup 0/C, 12 h), mortalities of 30% and 90% were observed with cadmium challenge doses of 100 and 150 mg Cd/kg, respectively. Significant correlations were demonstrated between induced hepatic MT concentrations and cadmium pretreatment, as well as cold pretreatment. The induced tolerance to cadmium was attributed, in part, to the induction of MT synthesis. Furthermore, the induced levels of MT resulting from cold stress may confound the simplistic approach of using MT as a biological monitor of occupational exposure to cadmium.

  10. Toxicokinetic models and related tools in environmental risk assessment of chemicals.

    PubMed

    Grech, Audrey; Brochot, Céline; Dorne, Jean-Lou; Quignot, Nadia; Bois, Frédéric Y; Beaudouin, Rémy

    2017-02-01

    Environmental risk assessment of chemicals for the protection of ecosystems integrity is a key regulatory and scientific research field which is undergoing constant development in modelling approaches and harmonisation with human risk assessment. This review focuses on state-of-the-art toxicokinetic tools and models that have been applied to terrestrial and aquatic species relevant to environmental risk assessment of chemicals. Both empirical and mechanistic toxicokinetic models are discussed using the results of extensive literature searches together with tools and software for their calibration and an overview of applications in environmental risk assessment. These include simple tools such as one-compartment models, multi-compartment models to physiologically-based toxicokinetic (PBTK) models, mostly available for aquatic species such as fish species and a number of chemical classes including plant protection products, metals, persistent organic pollutants, nanoparticles. Data gaps and further research needs are highlighted.

  11. Glucocorticoid and mineralocorticoid action: why should we consider influences by environmental chemicals?

    PubMed

    Odermatt, Alex; Gumy, Christel

    2008-11-15

    Treatment of so-called civilization diseases, including some forms of cancer, immune-related diseases and metabolic disorders, represent a major challenge in the industrialized world. In addition to genetic predisposition, behavior and exposure to xenobiotics contribute to these diseases. Here, we review existing evidence for an association of environmental chemicals with disturbed glucocorticoid- and mineralocorticoid-regulated physiological processes. Impaired activity of glucocorticoids and mineralocorticoids can contribute to several diseases, including neurological diseases, immune disorders and metabolic syndrome. Recent studies provide evidence for the existence of environmental chemicals that are able to disrupt the function of these hormones at different levels of their action. Therefore, potential interferences with these hormones should be considered for safety assessment of chemicals. Compared with the extensive knowledge on chemicals interfering with estrogen or androgen responses, the study of glucocorticoid and mineralocorticoid disruptors is an emerging field of research, and the identification of relevant xenobiotics and their underlying mechanisms of toxicity remains a major challenge.

  12. QSAR model for human pregnane X receptor (PXR) binding: Screening of environmental chemicals and correlations with genotoxicity, endocrine disruption and teratogenicity

    SciTech Connect

    Dybdahl, Marianne Nikolov, Nikolai G.; Wedebye, Eva Bay; Jónsdóttir, Svava Ósk; Niemelä, Jay R.

    2012-08-01

    The pregnane X receptor (PXR) has a key role in regulating the metabolism and transport of structurally diverse endogenous and exogenous compounds. Activation of PXR has the potential to initiate adverse effects, causing drug–drug interactions, and perturbing normal physiological functions. Therefore, identification of PXR ligands would be valuable information for pharmaceutical and toxicological research. In the present study, we developed a quantitative structure–activity relationship (QSAR) model for the identification of PXR ligands using data based on a human PXR binding assay. A total of 631 molecules, representing a variety of chemical structures, constituted the training set of the model. Cross-validation of the model showed a sensitivity of 82%, a specificity of 85%, and a concordance of 84%. The developed model provided knowledge about molecular descriptors that may influence the binding of molecules to PXR. The model was used to screen a large inventory of environmental chemicals, of which 47% was found to be within domain of the model. Approximately 35% of the chemicals within domain were predicted to be PXR ligands. The predicted PXR ligands were found to be overrepresented among chemicals predicted to cause adverse effects, such as genotoxicity, teratogenicity, estrogen receptor activation and androgen receptor antagonism compared to chemicals not causing these effects. The developed model may be useful as a tool for predicting potential PXR ligands and for providing mechanistic information of toxic effects of chemicals. -- Highlights: ► Global QSAR model for the identification of PXR ligands was developed. ► Molecular descriptors that may influence PXR binding were identified. ► 35% of a large set of environmental chemicals were predicted to be PXR ligands. ► Predicted PXR binding was associated with various adverse effects.

  13. Biomonitoring of human fetal exposure to environmental chemicals in early pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Cooke, Gerard M

    2014-01-01

    The first trimester of human fetal life, a period of extremely rapid development of physiological systems, represents the most rapid growth phase in human life. Interference in the establishment of organ systems may result in abnormal development that may be manifest immediately or programmed for later abnormal function. Exposure to environmental chemicals may be affecting development at these early stages, and yet there is limited knowledge of the quantities and identities of the chemicals to which the fetus is exposed during early pregnancy. Clearly, opportunities for assessing fetal chemical exposure directly are extremely limited. Hence, this review describes indirect means of assessing fetal exposure in early pregnancy to chemicals that are considered disrupters of development. Consideration is given to such matrices as maternal hair, fingernails, urine, saliva, sweat, breast milk, amniotic fluid and blood, and fetal matrices such as cord blood, cord tissue, meconium, placenta, and fetal liver. More than 150 articles that presented data from chemical analysis of human maternal and fetal tissues and fluids were reviewed. Priority was given to articles where chemical analysis was conducted in more than one matrix. Where correlations between maternal and fetal matrices were determined, these articles were included and are highlighted, as these may provide the basis for future investigations of early fetal exposure. The determination of fetal chemical exposure, at the time of rapid human growth and development, will greatly assist regulatory agencies in risk assessments and establishment of advisories for risk management concerning environmental chemicals.

  14. Extended Characterization of Chemical Processes in Hot Cells Using Environmental Swipe Samples

    SciTech Connect

    Olsen, Khris B.; Mitroshkov, Alexandre V.; Thomas, M-L; Lepel, Elwood A.; Brunson, Ronald R.; Ladd-Lively, Jennifer

    2012-09-15

    Environmental sampling is used extensively by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for verification of information from State declarations or a facility’s design regarding nuclear activities occurring within the country or a specific facility. Environmental sampling of hot cells within a facility under safeguards is conducted using 10.2 cm x 10.2 cm cotton swipe material or cellulose swipes. Traditional target analytes used by the IAEA to verify operations within a facility include a select list of gamma-emitting radionuclides and total and isotopic U and Pu. Analysis of environmental swipe samples collected within a hot-cell facility where chemical processing occurs may also provide information regarding specific chemicals used in fuel processing. However, using swipe material to elucidate what specific chemical processes were/are being used within a hot cell has not been previously evaluated. Staff from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) teamed to evaluate the potential use of environmental swipe samples as collection media for volatile and semivolatile organic compounds. This evaluation was initiated with sample collection during a series of Coupled End-to-End (CETE) reprocessing runs at ORNL. The study included measurement of gamma emitting radionuclides, total and isotopic U and Pu, and volatile and semivolatile organic compounds. These results allowed us to elucidate what chemical processes used in the hot cells during reprocessing of power reactor and identify other legacy chemicals used in hot cell operations which predate the CETE process.

  15. A multi-scale, multi-disciplinary approach for assessing the technological, economic and environmental performance of bio-based chemicals.

    PubMed

    Herrgård, Markus; Sukumara, Sumesh; Campodonico, Miguel; Zhuang, Kai

    2015-12-01

    In recent years, bio-based chemicals have gained interest as a renewable alternative to petrochemicals. However, there is a significant need to assess the technological, biological, economic and environmental feasibility of bio-based chemicals, particularly during the early research phase. Recently, the Multi-scale framework for Sustainable Industrial Chemicals (MuSIC) was introduced to address this issue by integrating modelling approaches at different scales ranging from cellular to ecological scales. This framework can be further extended by incorporating modelling of the petrochemical value chain and the de novo prediction of metabolic pathways connecting existing host metabolism to desirable chemical products. This multi-scale, multi-disciplinary framework for quantitative assessment of bio-based chemicals will play a vital role in supporting engineering, strategy and policy decisions as we progress towards a sustainable chemical industry.

  16. DNA methylation: a mechanism linking environmental chemical exposures to risk of autism spectrum disorders?

    PubMed Central

    Keil, Kimberly P.; Lein, Pamela J.

    2016-01-01

    There is now compelling evidence that gene by environment interactions are important in the etiology of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). However, the mechanisms by which environmental factors interact with genetic susceptibilities to confer individual risk for ASD remain a significant knowledge gap in the field. The epigenome, and in particular DNA methylation, is a critical gene expression regulatory mechanism in normal and pathogenic brain development. DNA methylation can be influenced by environmental factors such as diet, hormones, stress, drugs, or exposure to environmental chemicals, suggesting that environmental factors may contribute to adverse neurodevelopmental outcomes of relevance to ASD via effects on DNA methylation in the developing brain. In this review, we describe epidemiological and experimental evidence implicating altered DNA methylation as a potential mechanism by which environmental chemicals confer risk for ASD, using polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), lead, and bisphenol A (BPA) as examples. Understanding how environmental chemical exposures influence DNA methylation and how these epigenetic changes modulate the risk and/or severity of ASD will not only provide mechanistic insight regarding gene-environment interactions of relevance to ASD but may also suggest potential intervention strategies for these and potentially other neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:27158529

  17. IDENTIFICATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS ASSOCIATED WITH THE DEVELOPMENT OF TOXICANT ASSOCIATED FATTY LIVER DISEASE IN RODENTS

    PubMed Central

    Al-Eryani, Laila; Wahlang, Banrida; Falkner, K.C.; Guardiola, J. J.; Clair, H.B.; Prough, R.A.; Cave, M.

    2014-01-01

    Background Toxicant associated fatty liver disease (TAFLD) is a recently identified form of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) associated with exposure to industrial chemicals and environmental pollutants. Numerous studies have been conducted to test the association between industrial chemicals/ environmental pollutants and fatty liver disease both in vivo and in vitro. Objectives The objective of the paper is to report a list of chemicals associated with TAFLD. Methods Two federal databases of rodent toxicology studies– ToxRefDB (Environmental Protection Agency) and Chemical Effects in Biological Systems (CEBS, National Toxicology Program) were searched for liver endpoints. Combined, these two databases archive nearly 2000 rodent studies. TASH descriptors including fatty change, fatty necrosis, Oil red O positive staining, steatosis and lipid deposition were queried. Results Using these search terms, 123 chemicals associated with fatty liver were identified. Pesticides and solvents were the most frequently identified chemicals, while PCBs/dioxins were the most potent. About 44% of identified compounds were pesticides or their intermediates, and nearly 10% of pesticide registration studies in ToxRefDB were associated with fatty liver. Fungicides and herbicides were more frequently associated with fatty liver than insecticides. Conclusions More research on pesticides, solvents, metals and PCBs/dioxins in NAFLD/TAFLD is warranted due to their association with liver damage. PMID:25326588

  18. CADASTER QSPR Models for Predictions of Melting and Boiling Points of Perfluorinated Chemicals.

    PubMed

    Bhhatarai, Barun; Teetz, Wolfram; Liu, Tao; Öberg, Tomas; Jeliazkova, Nina; Kochev, Nikolay; Pukalov, Ognyan; Tetko, Igor V; Kovarich, Simona; Papa, Ester; Gramatica, Paola

    2011-03-14

    Quantitative structure property relationship (QSPR) studies on per- and polyfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) on melting point (MP) and boiling point (BP) are presented. The training and prediction chemicals used for developing and validating the models were selected from Syracuse PhysProp database and literatures. The available experimental data sets were split in two different ways: a) random selection on response value, and b) structural similarity verified by self-organizing-map (SOM), in order to propose reliable predictive models, developed only on the training sets and externally verified on the prediction sets. Individual linear and non-linear approaches based models developed by different CADASTER partners on 0D-2D Dragon descriptors, E-state descriptors and fragment based descriptors as well as consensus model and their predictions are presented. In addition, the predictive performance of the developed models was verified on a blind external validation set (EV-set) prepared using PERFORCE database on 15 MP and 25 BP data respectively. This database contains only long chain perfluoro-alkylated chemicals, particularly monitored by regulatory agencies like US-EPA and EU-REACH. QSPR models with internal and external validation on two different external prediction/validation sets and study of applicability-domain highlighting the robustness and high accuracy of the models are discussed. Finally, MPs for additional 303 PFCs and BPs for 271 PFCs were predicted for which experimental measurements are unknown.

  19. Prediction of Drug Indications Based on Chemical Interactions and Chemical Similarities

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Guohua; Lu, Yin; Lu, Changhong; Cai, Yu-Dong

    2015-01-01

    Discovering potential indications of novel or approved drugs is a key step in drug development. Previous computational approaches could be categorized into disease-centric and drug-centric based on the starting point of the issues or small-scaled application and large-scale application according to the diversity of the datasets. Here, a classifier has been constructed to predict the indications of a drug based on the assumption that interactive/associated drugs or drugs with similar structures are more likely to target the same diseases using a large drug indication dataset. To examine the classifier, it was conducted on a dataset with 1,573 drugs retrieved from Comprehensive Medicinal Chemistry database for five times, evaluated by 5-fold cross-validation, yielding five 1st order prediction accuracies that were all approximately 51.48%. Meanwhile, the model yielded an accuracy rate of 50.00% for the 1st order prediction by independent test on a dataset with 32 other drugs in which drug repositioning has been confirmed. Interestingly, some clinically repurposed drug indications that were not included in the datasets are successfully identified by our method. These results suggest that our method may become a useful tool to associate novel molecules with new indications or alternative indications with existing drugs. PMID:25821813

  20. Study of 202 natural, synthetic, and environmental chemicals for binding to the androgen receptor.

    PubMed

    Fang, Hong; Tong, Weida; Branham, William S; Moland, Carrie L; Dial, Stacy L; Hong, Huixiao; Xie, Qian; Perkins, Roger; Owens, William; Sheehan, Daniel M

    2003-10-01

    A number of environmental and industrial chemicals are reported to possess androgenic or antiandrogenic activities. These androgenic endocrine disrupting chemicals may disrupt the endocrine system of humans and wildlife by mimicking or antagonizing the functions of natural hormones. The present study developed a low cost recombinant androgen receptor (AR) competitive binding assay that uses no animals. We validated the assay by comparing the protocols and results from other similar assays, such as the binding assay using prostate cytosol. We tested 202 natural, synthetic, and environmental chemicals that encompass a broad range of structural classes, including steroids, diethylstilbestrol and related chemicals, antiestrogens, flutamide derivatives, bisphenol A derivatives, alkylphenols, parabens, alkyloxyphenols, phthalates, siloxanes, phytoestrogens, DDTs, PCBs, pesticides, organophosphate insecticides, and other chemicals. Some of these chemicals are environmentally persistent and/or commercially important, but their AR binding affinities have not been previously reported. To the best of our knowledge, these results represent the largest and most diverse data set publicly available for chemical binding to the AR. Through a careful structure-activity relationship (SAR) examination of the data set in conjunction with knowledge of the recently reported ligand-AR crystal structures, we are able to define the general structural requirements for chemical binding to AR. Hydrophobic interactions are important for AR binding. The interaction between ligand and AR at the 3- and 17-positions of testosterone and R1881 found in other chemical classes are discussed in depth. The SAR studies of ligand binding characteristics for AR are compared to our previously reported results for estrogen receptor binding.

  1. Endocrine Profiling and Prioritization of Environmental Chemicals Using ToxCast Data

    PubMed Central

    Reif, David M.; Martin, Matthew T.; Tan, Shirlee W.; Houck, Keith A.; Judson, Richard S.; Richard, Ann M.; Knudsen, Thomas B.; Dix, David J.; Kavlock, Robert J.

    2010-01-01

    Background The prioritization of chemicals for toxicity testing is a primary goal of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ToxCast™ program. Phase I of ToxCast used a battery of 467 in vitro, high-throughput screening assays to assess 309 environmental chemicals. One important mode of action leading to toxicity is endocrine disruption, and the U.S. EPA’s Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program (EDSP) has been charged with screening pesticide chemicals and environmental contaminants for their potential to affect the endocrine systems of humans and wildlife. Objective The goal of this study was to develop a flexible method to facilitate the rational prioritization of chemicals for further evaluation and demonstrate its application as a candidate decision-support tool for EDSP. Methods Focusing on estrogen, androgen, and thyroid pathways, we defined putative endocrine profiles and derived a relative rank or score for the entire ToxCast library of 309 unique chemicals. Effects on other nuclear receptors and xenobiotic metabolizing enzymes were also considered, as were pertinent chemical descriptors and pathways relevant to endocrine-mediated signaling. Results Combining multiple data sources into an overall, weight-of-evidence Toxicological Priority Index (ToxPi) score for prioritizing further chemical testing resulted in more robust conclusions than any single data source taken alone. Conclusions Incorporating data from in vitro assays, chemical descriptors, and biological pathways in this prioritization schema provided a flexible, comprehensive visualization and ranking of each chemical’s potential endocrine activity. Importantly, ToxPi profiles provide a transparent visualization of the relative contribution of all information sources to an overall priority ranking. The method developed here is readily adaptable to diverse chemical prioritization tasks. PMID:20826373

  2. Biodiversity in environmental assessment-current practice and tools for prediction

    SciTech Connect

    Gontier, Mikael . E-mail: gontier@kth.se; Balfors, Berit . E-mail: balfors@kth.se; Moertberg, Ulla . E-mail: mortberg@kth.se

    2006-04-15

    Habitat loss and fragmentation are major threats to biodiversity. Environmental impact assessment and strategic environmental assessment are essential instruments used in physical planning to address such problems. Yet there are no well-developed methods for quantifying and predicting impacts of fragmentation on biodiversity. In this study, a literature review was conducted on GIS-based ecological models that have potential as prediction tools for biodiversity assessment. Further, a review of environmental impact statements for road and railway projects from four European countries was performed, to study how impact prediction concerning biodiversity issues was addressed. The results of the study showed the existing gap between research in GIS-based ecological modelling and current practice in biodiversity assessment within environmental assessment.

  3. Tracking contributions to human body burden of environmental chemicals by correlating environmental measurements with biomarkers.

    PubMed

    Shin, Hyeong-Moo; McKone, Thomas E; Sohn, Michael D; Bennett, Deborah H

    2014-01-01

    The work addresses current knowledge gaps regarding causes for correlations between environmental and biomarker measurements and explores the underappreciated role of variability in disaggregating exposure attributes that contribute to biomarker levels. Our simulation-based study considers variability in environmental and food measurements, the relative contribution of various exposure sources (indoors and food), and the biological half-life of a compound, on the resulting correlations between biomarker and environmental measurements. For two hypothetical compounds whose half-lives are on the order of days for one and years for the other, we generate synthetic daily environmental concentrations and food exposures with different day-to-day and population variability as well as different amounts of home- and food-based exposure. Assuming that the total intake results only from home-based exposure and food ingestion, we estimate time-dependent biomarker concentrations using a one-compartment pharmacokinetic model. Box plots of modeled R2 values indicate that although the R2 correlation between wipe and biological (e.g., serum) measurements is within the same range for the two compounds, the relative contribution of the home exposure to the total exposure could differ by up to 20%, thus providing the relative indication of their contribution to body burden. The novel method introduced in this paper provides insights for evaluating scenarios or experiments where sample, exposure, and compound variability must be weighed in order to interpret associations between exposure data.

  4. Nonradiological chemical pathway analysis and identification of chemicals of concern for environmental monitoring at the Hanford Site

    SciTech Connect

    Blanton, M.L.; Cooper, A.T.; Castleton, K.J.

    1995-11-01

    Pacific Northwest`s Surface Environmental Surveillance Project (SESP) is an ongoing effort tot design, review, and conducted monitoring on and off the Hanford site. Chemicals of concern that were selected are listed. Using modeled exposure pathways, the offsite cancer incidence and hazard quotient were calculated and a retrospective pathway analysis performed to estimate what onsite concentrations would be required in the soil for each chemical of concern and other detected chemicals that would be required to obtain an estimated offsite human-health risk of 1.0E-06 cancer incidence or 1.0 hazard quotient. This analysis indicates that current nonradiological chemical contamination occurring on the site does not pose a significant offsite human-health risk; the highest cancer incidence to the offsite maximally exposed individual was from arsenic (1.76E-10); the highest hazard quotient was chromium(VI) (1.48E-04). The most sensitive pathways of exposure were surfacewater and aquatic food consumption. Combined total offsite excess cancer incidence was 2.09E-10 and estimated hazard quotient was 2.40E-04. Of the 17 identified chemicals of concern, the SESP does not currently (routinely) monitor arsenic, benzo(a)pyrene, bis(2- ethylhexyl)phthalate (BEHP), and chrysene. Only 3 of the chemicals of concern (arsenic, BEHP, chloroform) could actually occur in onsite soil at concern high enough to cause a 1.0E-06 excess cancer incidence or a 1.0 hazard index for a given offsite exposure pathway. During the retrospective analysis, 20 other chemicals were also evaluated; only vinyl chloride and thallium could reach targeted offsite risk values.

  5. Multispecies QSAR modeling for predicting the aquatic toxicity of diverse organic chemicals for regulatory toxicology.

    PubMed

    Singh, Kunwar P; Gupta, Shikha; Kumar, Anuj; Mohan, Dinesh

    2014-05-19

    The research aims to develop multispecies quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARs) modeling tools capable of predicting the acute toxicity of diverse chemicals in various Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) recommended test species of different trophic levels for regulatory toxicology. Accordingly, the ensemble learning (EL) approach based classification and regression QSAR models, such as decision treeboost (DTB) and decision tree forest (DTF) implementing stochastic gradient boosting and bagging algorithms were developed using the algae (P. subcapitata) experimental toxicity data for chemicals. The EL-QSAR models were successfully applied to predict toxicities of wide groups of chemicals in other test species including algae (S. obliguue), daphnia, fish, and bacteria. Structural diversity of the selected chemicals and those of the end-point toxicity data of five different test species were tested using the Tanimoto similarity index and Kruskal-Wallis (K-W) statistics. Predictive and generalization abilities of the constructed QSAR models were compared using statistical parameters. The developed QSAR models (DTB and DTF) yielded a considerably high classification accuracy in complete data of model building (algae) species (97.82%, 99.01%) and ranged between 92.50%-94.26% and 92.14%-94.12% in four test species, respectively, whereas regression QSAR models (DTB and DTF) rendered high correlation (R(2)) between the measured and model predicted toxicity end-point values and low mean-squared error in model building (algae) species (0.918, 0.15; 0.905, 0.21) and ranged between 0.575 and 0.672, 0.18-0.51 and 0.605-0.689 and 0.20-0.45 in four different test species. The developed QSAR models exhibited good predictive and generalization abilities in different test species of varied trophic levels and can be used for predicting the toxicities of new chemicals for screening and prioritization of chemicals for regulation.

  6. High-Throughput Dietary Exposure Predictions for Chemical Migrants from Food Packaging Materials

    EPA Science Inventory

    United States Environmental Protection Agency researchers have developed a Stochastic Human Exposure and Dose Simulation High -Throughput (SHEDS-HT) model for use in prioritization of chemicals under the ExpoCast program. In this research, new methods were implemented in SHEDS-HT...

  7. Role of Environmental Chemicals in Diabetes and Obesity: A National Toxicology Program Workshop Review

    PubMed Central

    Heindel, Jerrold J.; Bucher, John R.; Gallo, Michael A.

    2012-01-01

    Background: There has been increasing interest in the concept that exposures to environmental chemicals may be contributing factors to the epidemics of diabetes and obesity. On 11–13 January 2011, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) Division of the National Toxicology Program (NTP) organized a workshop to evaluate the current state of the science on these topics of increasing public health concern. Objective: The main objective of the workshop was to develop recommendations for a research agenda after completing a critical analysis of the literature for humans and experimental animals exposed to certain environmental chemicals. The environmental exposures considered at the workshop were arsenic, persistent organic pollutants, maternal smoking/nicotine, organotins, phthalates, bisphenol A, and pesticides. High-throughput screening data from Toxicology in the 21st Century (Tox21) were also considered as a way to evaluate potential cellular pathways and generate -hypotheses for testing which and how certain chemicals might perturb biological processes related to diabetes and obesity. Conclusions: Overall, the review of the existing literature identified linkages between several of the environmental exposures and type 2 diabetes. There was also support for the “developmental obesogen” hypothesis, which suggests that chemical exposures may increase the risk of obesity by altering the differentiation of adipocytes or the development of neural circuits that regulate feeding behavior. The effects may be most apparent when the developmental exposure is combined with consumption of a high-calorie, high-carbohydrate, or high-fat diet later in life. Research on environmental chemical exposures and type 1 diabetes was very limited. This lack of research was considered a critical data gap. In this workshop review, we outline the major themes that emerged from the workshop and discuss activities that NIEHS/NTP is undertaking to address research

  8. Development of Prediction System for Environmental Burden for Machine Tool Operation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narita, Hirohisa; Kawamura, Hiroshi; Norihisa, Takashi; Chen, Lian-Yi; Fujimoto, Hideo; Hasebe, Takao

    Recently, some activities for environmental protection have been attempted to reduce environmental burdens in many fields. The manufacturing field also requires such reduction. Hence, a prediction system for environmental burden for machining operation is proposed based on the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) policy for the future manufacturing system in this research. This system enables the calculation of environmental burden (equivalent CO2 emission) due to the electric consumption of machine tool components, cutting tool status, coolant quantity, lubricant oil quantity and metal chip quantity, and provides accurate information of environmental burden of the machining process by considering some activities related to machine tool operation. In this paper, the development of the prediction system is described. As a case study, two Numerical Control (NC) programs that manufacture a simple shape are evaluated to show the feasibility of the proposed system.

  9. AI and SAR approaches for predicting chemical carcinogenicity: survey and status report.

    PubMed

    Richardt, A M; Benigni, R

    2002-03-01

    A wide variety of artificial intelligence (AI) and structure-activity relationship (SAR) approaches have been applied to tackling the general problem of predicting rodent chemical carcinogenicity. Given the diversity of chemical structures and mechanisms relative to this endpoint, the shared challenge of these approaches is to accurately delineate classes of active chemicals representing distinct biological and chemical mechanism domains, and within those classes determine the structural features and properties responsible for modulating activity. In the following discussion, we present a survey of AI and SAR approaches that have been applied to the prediction of rodent carcinogenicity, and discuss these in general terms and in the context of the results of two organized prediction exercises (PTE-1 and PTE-2) sponsored by the US National Cancer Institute/National Toxicology Program. Most models participating in these exercises were successful in identifying major structural-alerting classes of active carcinogens, but failed in modeling the more subtle modifiers to activity within those classes. In addition, methods that incorporated mechanism-based reasoning or biological data along with structural information outperformed models limited to structural information exclusively. Finally, a few recent carcinogenicity-modeling efforts are presented illustrating progress in tackling some aspects of the carcinogenicity prediction problem. The first example, a QSAR model for predicting carcinogenic potency of aromatic amines, illustrates that success is possible within well-represented classes of carcinogens. From the second example, a newly developed FDA/OTR MultiCASE model for predicting the carcinogenicity of pharmaceuticals, we conclude that the definitions of biological activity and nature of chemicals in the training set are important determinants of the predictive success and specificity/sensitivity characteristics of a derived model.

  10. High-throughput characterization of chemical-associated embryonic behavioral changes predicts teratogenic outcomes.

    PubMed

    Reif, David M; Truong, Lisa; Mandrell, David; Marvel, Skylar; Zhang, Guozhu; Tanguay, Robert L

    2016-06-01

    New strategies are needed to address the data gap between the bioactivity of chemicals in the environment versus existing hazard information. We address whether a high-throughput screening (HTS) system using a vertebrate organism (embryonic zebrafish) can characterize chemical-elicited behavioral responses at an early, 24 hours post-fertilization (hpf) stage that predict teratogenic consequences at a later developmental stage. The system was used to generate full concentration-response behavioral profiles at 24 hpf across 1060 ToxCast™ chemicals. Detailed, morphological evaluation of all individuals was performed as experimental follow-up at 5 days post-fertilization (dpf). Chemicals eliciting behavioral responses were also mapped against external HTS in vitro results to identify specific molecular targets and neurosignalling pathways. We found that, as an integrative measure of normal development, significant alterations in movement highlighted active chemicals representing several modes of action. These early behavioral responses were predictive for 17 specific developmental abnormalities and mortality measured at 5 dpf, often at lower (i.e., more potent) concentrations than those at which morphological effects were observed. Therefore, this system can provide rapid characterization of chemical-elicited behavioral responses at an early developmental stage that are predictive of observable adverse effects later in life.

  11. In silico toxicology: computational methods for the prediction of chemical toxicity.

    PubMed

    Raies, Arwa B; Bajic, Vladimir B

    2016-03-01

    Determining the toxicity of chemicals is necessary to identify their harmful effects on humans, animals, plants, or the environment. It is also one of the main steps in drug design. Animal models have been used for a long time for toxicity testing. However, in vivo animal tests are constrained by time, ethical considerations, and financial burden. Therefore, computational methods for estimating the toxicity of chemicals are considered useful. In silico toxicology is one type of toxicity assessment that uses computational methods to analyze, simulate, visualize, or predict the toxicity of chemicals. In silico toxicology aims to complement existing toxicity tests to predict toxicity, prioritize chemicals, guide toxicity tests, and minimize late-stage failures in drugs design. There are various methods for generating models to predict toxicity endpoints. We provide a comprehensive overview, explain, and compare the strengths and weaknesses of the existing modeling methods and algorithms for toxicity prediction with a particular (but not exclusive) emphasis on computational tools that can implement these methods and refer to expert systems that deploy the prediction models. Finally, we briefly review a number of new research directions in in silico toxicology and provide recommendations for designing in silico models. WIREs Comput Mol Sci 2016, 6:147-172. doi: 10.1002/wcms.1240 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website.

  12. Epigenome: Biosensor of Cumulative Exposure to Chemical and Nonchemical Stressors Related to Environmental Justice

    PubMed Central

    Gruber, David; Sonawane, Babasaheb

    2014-01-01

    Understanding differential disease susceptibility requires new tools to quantify the cumulative effects of environmental stress. Evidence suggests that social, physical, and chemical stressors can influence disease through the accumulation of epigenetic modifications. Geographically stable epigenetic alterations could identify plausible mechanisms for health disparities among the disadvantaged and poor. Relations between neighborhood-specific epigenetic markers and disease would identify the most appropriate targets for medical and environmental intervention. Complex interactions among genes, the environment, and disease require the examination of how epigenetic changes regulate susceptibility to environmental stressors. Progress in understanding disparities in disease susceptibility may depend on assessing the cumulative effect of environmental stressors on genetic substrates. We highlight key concepts regarding the interface between environmental stress, epigenetics, and chronic disease. PMID:25122010

  13. Predicting chemically-induced skin reactions. Part I: QSAR models of skin sensitization and their application to identify potentially hazardous compounds

    SciTech Connect

    Alves, Vinicius M.; Muratov, Eugene; Fourches, Denis; Strickland, Judy; Kleinstreuer, Nicole; Tropsha, Alexander

    2015-04-15

    Repetitive exposure to a chemical agent can induce an immune reaction in inherently susceptible individuals that leads to skin sensitization. Although many chemicals have been reported as skin sensitizers, there have been very few rigorously validated QSAR models with defined applicability domains (AD) that were developed using a large group of chemically diverse compounds. In this study, we have aimed to compile, curate, and integrate the largest publicly available dataset related to chemically-induced skin sensitization, use this data to generate rigorously validated and QSAR models for skin sensitization, and employ these models as a virtual screening tool for identifying putative sensitizers among environmental chemicals. We followed best practices for model building and validation implemented with our predictive QSAR workflow using Random Forest modeling technique in combination with SiRMS and Dragon descriptors. The Correct Classification Rate (CCR) for QSAR models discriminating sensitizers from non-sensitizers was 71–88% when evaluated on several external validation sets, within a broad AD, with positive (for sensitizers) and negative (for non-sensitizers) predicted rates of 85% and 79% respectively. When compared to the skin sensitization module included in the OECD QSAR Toolbox as well as to the skin sensitization model in publicly available VEGA software, our models showed a significantly higher prediction accuracy for the same sets of external compounds as evaluated by Positive Predicted Rate, Negative Predicted Rate, and CCR. These models were applied to identify putative chemical hazards in the Scorecard database of possible skin or sense organ toxicants as primary candidates for experimental validation. - Highlights: • It was compiled the largest publicly-available skin sensitization dataset. • Predictive QSAR models were developed for skin sensitization. • Developed models have higher prediction accuracy than OECD QSAR Toolbox. • Putative

  14. Environmental biotechnology: biotechnology solutions for a global environmental problem, hazardous chemical wastes.

    PubMed

    Omenn, G S

    Biotechnology has a growing place in the remediation of hazardous waste sites throughout the world, and especially in Asia where population density is high and land and fresh water are scarce. In-situ bioremediation has been demonstrated already to be highly effective for petroleum hydrocarbons (alkanes, aromatics, polychlorophenols) and organophosphate pesticides in soils and for gasoline by-products (benzene, toluene, xylene) and chlorinated solvents (trichloroethylene) in groundwater. Heavy metals and PCBs are not suitable for bioremediation. Environmental biotechnology includes solid-phase and slurry-phase bioremediation for contaminated soils and site-specific bioreactors for contaminated groundwater. Specific examples are presented. From a policy point of view, accumulated wastes must be detoxified, preferably at sites where they already exist. We cannot continue to rely on their removal and disposal "elsewhere". For current waste streams, we must minimize the volumes and toxicity. Environmental biotechnology will play a key role.

  15. Prediction of biodegradability from chemical structure: Modeling or ready biodegradation test data

    SciTech Connect

    Loonen, H.; Lindgren, F.; Hansen, B.

    1999-08-01

    Biodegradation data were collected and evaluated for 894 substances with widely varying chemical structures. All data were determined according to the Japanese Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) I test protocol. The MITI I test is a screening test for ready biodegradability and has been described by Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) test guideline 301 C and European Union (EU) test guideline C4F. The chemicals were characterized by a set of 127 predefined structural fragments. This data set was used to develop a model for the prediction of the biodegradability of chemicals under standardized OECD and EU ready biodegradation test conditions. Partial least squares (PLS) discriminant analysis was used for the model development. The model was evaluated by means of internal cross-validation and repeated external validation. The importance of various structural fragments and fragment interactions was investigated. The most important fragments include the presence of a long alkyl chain; hydroxy, ester, and acid groups (enhancing biodegradation); and the presence of one or more aromatic rings and halogen substituents (regarding biodegradation). More than 85% of the model predictions were correct for using the complete data set. The not readily biodegradable predictions were slightly better than the readily biodegradable predictions (86 vs 84%). The average percentage of correct predictions from four external validation studies was 83%. Model optimization by including fragment interactions improve the model predicting capabilities to 89%. It can be concluded that the PLS model provides predictions of high reliability for a diverse range of chemical structures. The predictions conform to the concept of readily biodegradable (or not readily biodegradable) as defined by OECD and EU test guidelines.

  16. Predicting rare events in chemical reactions: Application to skin cell proliferation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Chiu Fan

    2010-08-01

    In a well-stirred system undergoing chemical reactions, fluctuations in the reaction propensities are approximately captured by the corresponding chemical Langevin equation. Within this context, we discuss in this work how the Kramers escape theory can be used to predict rare events in chemical reactions. As an example, we apply our approach to a recently proposed model on cell proliferation with relevance to skin cancer [P. B. Warren, Phys. Rev. E 80, 030903 (2009)]. In particular, we provide an analytical explanation for the form of the exponential exponent observed in the onset rate of uncontrolled cell proliferation.

  17. Chemical Transformation System: Cloud Based Cheminformatic Services to Support Integrated Environmental Modeling

    EPA Science Inventory

    Integrated Environmental Modeling (IEM) systems that account for the fate/transport of organics frequently require physicochemical properties as well as transformation products. A myriad of chemical property databases exist but these can be difficult to access and often do not co...

  18. Incorporating Chemical Information Instruction and Environmental Science into the First-Year Organic Chemistry Laboratory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Landolt, R. G.

    2006-01-01

    The chemical information instruction and environmental science which is incorporated into a first-year organic chemistry laboratory is presented. The students are charged with devised search strategies, conducting online searches and limiting the project scope to ocean systems. The laboratory serves to provide for search strategy development…

  19. Allium-test as a tool for toxicity testing of environmental radioactive-chemical mixtures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oudalova, A. A.; Geras’kin, S. A.; Dikareva, N. S.; Pyatkova, S. V.

    2017-01-01

    Bioassay-based approaches have been propagated to assess toxicity of unknown mixtures of environmental contaminants, but it was rarely applied in cases of chemicals with radionuclides combinations. Two Allium-test studies were performed to assess environmental impact from potential sources of combined radioactive-chemical pollution. Study sites were located at nuclear waste storage facilities in European and in Far-Eastern parts of Russia. As environmental media under impact, waters from monitor wells and nearby water bodies were tested. Concentrations of some chemicals and radionuclides in the samples collected enhanced the permitted limits. Cytogenetic and cytotoxic effects were used as biological endpoints, namely, frequency and spectrum of chromosome aberrations and mitotic abnormalities in anatelophase cells as well as mitotic activity in Allium root tips. Sample points were revealed where waters have an enhanced mutagenic potential. The findings obtained could be used to optimize monitoring system and advance decision making on management and rehabilitation of industrial sites. The Allium-test could be recommended and applied as an effective tool for toxicity testing in case of combined contamination of environmental compartments with radionuclides and chemical compounds.

  20. Detection of genetic hazards from environmental chemicals with plant test systems

    SciTech Connect

    Gill, B.S.; Sandhu, S.S.

    1989-01-01

    This book chapter reviews the methodology and utility of five plant bioassays for detecting the mutagenicity of environmental chemicals. The bioassays described in this chapter are Vicia faba root tip, Tradescantia micronucleus for chromosome aberrations, tradescantia stamen hair, Arabidopsis embryo for gene mutation, and wheat seedling assay for aneuploidy.

  1. DEVELOPMENT OF MOLECULAR MARKERS OF RESPONSE TO ASSESS THE SENSITIVITY OF CHILDREN TO ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Development of Molecular Markers of Response to Assess the Sensitivity of Children to Environmental Chemicals

    J.Allen, C. Blackman, M. Blaze, D. Delker, D. DeMarini, C. Doerr, R. Grindstaff, S.
    Hester, C. Jones, A. Kligerman, G. Knapp, M. Kohan, C. Nelson, R. Owen, J. P...

  2. Chemical mixtures and environmental effects: a pilot study to assess ecological exposure and effects in streams

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Buxton, Herbert T.; Reilly, Timothy J.; Kuivila, Kathryn; Kolpin, Dana W.; Bradley, Paul M.; Villeneuve, Daniel L.; Mills, Marc A.

    2015-01-01

    Assessment and management of the risks of exposure to complex chemical mixtures in streams are priorities for human and environmental health organizations around the world. The current lack of information on the composition and variability of environmental mixtures and a limited understanding of their combined effects are fundamental obstacles to timely identification and prevention of adverse human and ecological effects of exposure. This report describes the design of a field-based study of the composition and biological activity of chemical mixtures in U.S. stream waters affected by a wide range of human activities and contaminant sources. The study is a collaborative effort by the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Scientists sampled 38 streams spanning 24 States and Puerto Rico. Thirty-four of the sites were located in watersheds impacted by multiple contaminant sources, including industrial and municipal wastewater discharges, crop and animal agricultural runoff, urban runoff, and other point and nonpoint contaminant sources. The remaining four sites were minimally development reference watersheds. All samples underwent comprehensive chemical and biological characterization, including sensitive and specific direct analysis for over 700 dissolved organic and inorganic chemicals and field parameters, identification of unknown contaminants (environmental diagnostics), and a variety of bioassays to evaluate biological activity and toxicity.

  3. Chemical Transformation System: Cloud Based Cheminformatic Services to Support Integrated Environmental Modeling (proceedings)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Integrated Environmental Modeling (IEM) systems that account for the fate/transport of organics frequently require physicochemical properties as well as transformation products. A myriad of chemical property databases exist but these can be difficult to access and often do not co...

  4. STRESS PATHWAY-BASED REPORTER ASSAYS TO ASSESS TOXICITY OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    There is an increasing need for assays for the rapid and efficient assessment of toxicities of large numbers of environmental chemicals. To meet this need, we are developing cell-based reporter assays that measure the activation of key molecular stress pathways. We are using pro...

  5. Methods for the Determination of Chemical Substances in Marine and Estuarine Environmental Matrices - 2nd Edition

    EPA Science Inventory

    This NERL-Cincinnati publication, “Methods for the Determination of Chemical Substances in Marine and Estuarine Environmental Matrices - 2nd Edition” was prepared as the continuation of an initiative to gather together under a single cover a compendium of standardized laborato...

  6. Systems Biology Approach for Understanding MOA, Dose-Response and Susceptibility to Environmental Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    There is an increasing need for assays for the rapid and efficient assessment of toxicities of large numbers of environmental chemicals. To meet this need, we have developed a battery of cell-based reporter assays that measure the activation of key cellular stress pathways. These...

  7. Engineering Education: Environmental and Chemical Engineering or Technology Curricula--A European Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glavic, Peter; Lukman, Rebeka; Lozano, Rodrigo

    2009-01-01

    Over recent years, universities have been incorporating sustainable development (SD) into their systems, including their curricula. This article analyses the incorporation of SD into the curricula of chemical and environmental engineering or technology bachelor degrees at universities in the European Union (EU) and European Free Trade Association…

  8. U.S. EPA requires Cupertino cement company to report toxic chemicals, commit to environmental projects

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    SAN FRANCISCO - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a settlement with Lehigh Southwest Cement Company for failing to properly report releases of toxic chemicals at its Cupertino, Calif. plant. The company is required to pay a $47,600

  9. Solving practical problems in environmental sampling for chemical agents and their degradation compounds

    SciTech Connect

    Williams, K.E.; Sheely, M.V.

    1995-06-01

    The analyses of environmental samples for chemical agent degradation products were conducted using analytical test methods designed for evaluation of solid waste samples. All methods are found in the 3rd Edition of EPA`s compendium of analytical methods (SW-846) dated July 1992. These EPA methods are recommended for compliance testing required by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and are routinely used for the analysis of environmental samples. In the past several years, these same methods were used to support the survey of areas suspected of having chemical agent or chemical agent degradation compound contamination. An overview is presented of the U.S. Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine`s (previously the U.S. Army Environmental Hygiene Agency) involvement with the analysis of samples for chemical agents and their degradation compounds collected from sites such as Tooele Army Depot, Rocky Mt. Arsenal, Newport Army Depot, Johnston Island, and Spring Valley, (a residential site near American University in Washington D.C.) Discussed are practical problems encountered during a quick response of a non-surety laboratory to analyze environmental samples for agents and their degradation compounds.

  10. ABILITY OF THE MALE RAT PUBERTAL ASSAY TO DETECT ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS THAT ALTER THYROID HORMONE HOMEOSTASIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    ABILITY OF THE MALE RAT PUBERTAL ASSAY TO DETECT ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS THAT ALTER THYROID HORMONE HOMEOSTASIS

    Stoker, Tammy E.1; Laws, Susan C.1; Ferrell, Janet M.1; Cooper, Ralph L.1.

    Endocrinology Branch, RTD, NHEERL, ORD, U.S. EPA, RTP, NC, 27711.

    The...

  11. Molecular Modeling for Screening Environmental Chemicals for Estrogenicity: Use of the Toxicant-Target Approach

    EPA Science Inventory

    There is a paucity of relevant experimental information available for the evaluation of the potential health and environmental effects of many man made chemicals. Knowledge of the potential pathways for activity provides a rational basis for the extrapolations inherent in the pre...

  12. Brain drain: the cost of neglected responsibilities in evaluating cumulative effects of environmental chemicals.

    PubMed

    Maffini, Maricel V; Neltner, Thomas G

    2015-05-01

    Developmental disabilities affect millions of people and have a great impact on their lives, their families and the societies where they live. The prevalence of disorders such as autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder as well as subclinical decrements in brain function cannot be explained solely as genetic diseases. Exposures to environmental chemicals, especially during prenatal and early postnatal life, are one likely explanation for some of the decrements. The current chemical risk assessment approach is typically based on the toxicity caused by a single chemical on a variety of organs without acknowledging additional exposures to other chemicals also affecting the same organ or system. We identified more than 300 chemicals allowed in food that may have potential harmful effects on the developing brain. Each individual chemical may or may not have a harmful effect if it were the only one present, but we know next to nothing about their cumulative biological effects on the brain. An expanded cumulative risk assessment approach is needed, and it should focus on health outcomes, like developmental disabilities, arising from the accumulation of effects of multiple chemicals on the brain. The laws regulating the safety of additives already require that regulators in Europe and the USA consider cumulative effects; so far, they seem to have neglected the mandate. We must move beyond treating chemical exposures as isolated incidents and look at their cumulative biological effects on organs and their role in the onset of chronic diseases. The time has come to overhaul chemical risk assessment.

  13. Chemical analysis of human blood for assessment of environmental exposure to semivolatile organochlorine chemical contaminants.

    PubMed

    Bristol, D W; Crist, H L; Lewis, R G; MacLeod, K E; Sovocool, G W

    1982-01-01

    A chemical method for the quantitative analysis of organochlorine pesticide residues present in human blood was scaled-up to provide increased sensitivity and extended to include organochlorine industrial chemicals. Whole blood samples were extracted with hexane, concentrated, and analyzed without further cleanup by gas chromatography with electron capture detection. The methodology used was validated by conducting recovery studies at 1 and 10 ng/g (ppb) levels. Screening and confirmational analyses were performed by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry on samples collected from potentially exposed residents of the Love Canal area of Niagara Falls, New York and from volunteers in the Research Triangle Park area of North Carolina for 25 specific semivolatile organochlorine contaminants including chlorobenzene and chlorotoluene congeners, hexachloro-1,3-butadiene, pesticides, and polychlorinated biphenyls as Aroclor 1260. Dichlorobenzene, hexachlorobenzene, and beta-hexachlorocyclohexane residues fell in the range of 0.1 to 26 ppb in a high percentage of both the field and volunteer blood samples analyzed. Levels of other organochlorine compounds were either non-detectable or present in sub-ppb ranges.

  14. Advancing alternatives analysis: The role of predictive toxicology in selecting safer chemical products and processes.

    PubMed

    Malloy, Timothy; Zaunbrecher, Virginia; Beryt, Elizabeth; Judson, Richard; Tice, Raymond; Allard, Patrick; Blake, Ann; Cote, Ila; Godwin, Hilary; Heine, Lauren; Kerzic, Patrick; Kostal, Jakub; Marchant, Gary; McPartland, Jennifer; Moran, Kelly; Nel, Andre; Oguseitan, Oladele; Rossi, Mark; Thayer, Kristina; Tickner, Joel; Whittaker, Margaret; Zarker, Ken

    2017-03-01

    Alternatives analysis (AA) is a method used in regulation and product design to identify, assess, and evaluate the safety and viability of potential substitutes for hazardous chemicals. It requires toxicological data for the existing chemical and potential alternatives. Predictive toxicology uses in silico and in vitro approaches, computational models, and other tools to expedite toxicological data generation in more cost-effective manner than traditional approaches. This article briefly reviews the challenges associated with using predictive toxicology in regulatory AA, then presents four recommendations for its advancement. It recommends using case studies to advance the integration of predictive toxicology into AA; adopting a stepwise process to employing predicative toxicology in AA beginning with prioritization of chemicals of concern; leveraging existing resources to advance the integration of predictive toxicology into the practice of AA, and supporting trans-disciplinary efforts. The further incorporation of predictive toxicology into AA would advance the ability of companies and regulators to select alternatives to harmful ingredients, and potentially increase the use of predictive toxicology in regulation more broadly. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  15. Prediction of developmental chemical toxicity based on gene networks of human embryonic stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Yamane, Junko; Aburatani, Sachiyo; Imanishi, Satoshi; Akanuma, Hiromi; Nagano, Reiko; Kato, Tsuyoshi; Sone, Hideko; Ohsako, Seiichiroh; Fujibuchi, Wataru

    2016-01-01

    Predictive toxicology using stem cells or their derived tissues has gained increasing importance in biomedical and pharmaceutical research. Here, we show that toxicity category prediction by support vector machines (SVMs), which uses qRT-PCR data from 20 categorized chemicals based on a human embryonic stem cell (hESC) system, is improved by the adoption of gene networks, in which network edge weights are added as feature vectors when noisy qRT-PCR data fail to make accurate predictions. The accuracies of our system were 97.5–100% for three toxicity categories: neurotoxins (NTs), genotoxic carcinogens (GCs) and non-genotoxic carcinogens (NGCs). For two uncategorized chemicals, bisphenol-A and permethrin, our system yielded reasonable results: bisphenol-A was categorized as an NGC, and permethrin was categorized as an NT; both predictions were supported by recently published papers. Our study has two important features: (i) as the first study to employ gene networks without using conventional quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARs) as input data for SVMs to analyze toxicogenomics data in an hESC validation system, it uses additional information of gene-to-gene interactions to significantly increase prediction accuracies for noisy gene expression data; and (ii) using only undifferentiated hESCs, our study has considerable potential to predict late-onset chemical toxicities, including abnormalities that occur during embryonic development. PMID:27207879

  16. Environmental Pollution, Toxicity Profile and Treatment Approaches for Tannery Wastewater and Its Chemical Pollutants.

    PubMed

    Saxena, Gaurav; Chandra, Ram; Bharagava, Ram Naresh

    Leather industries are key contributors in the economy of many developing countries, but unfortunately they are facing serious challenges from the public and governments due to the associated environmental pollution. There is a public outcry against the industry due to the discharge of potentially toxic wastewater having alkaline pH, dark brown colour, unpleasant odour, high biological and chemical oxygen demand, total dissolved solids and a mixture of organic and inorganic pollutants. Various environment protection agencies have prioritized several chemicals as hazardous and restricted their use in leather processing however; many of these chemicals are used and discharged in wastewater. Therefore, it is imperative to adequately treat/detoxify the tannery wastewater for environmental safety. This paper provides a detail review on the environmental pollution and toxicity profile of tannery wastewater and chemicals. Furthermore, the status and advances in the existing treatment approaches used for the treatment and/or detoxification of tannery wastewater at both laboratory and pilot/industrial scale have been reviewed. In addition, the emerging treatment approaches alone or in combination with biological treatment approaches have also been considered. Moreover, the limitations of existing and emerging treatment approaches have been summarized and potential areas for further investigations have been discussed. In addition, the clean technologies for waste minimization, control and management are also discussed. Finally, the international legislation scenario on discharge limits for tannery wastewater and chemicals has also been discussed country wise with discharge standards for pollution prevention due to tannery wastewater.

  17. Chemical Engineering of Enzymes: Altered Catalytic Activity, Predictable Selectivity and Exceptional Stability of the Semisynthetic Peroxidase Seleno-Subtilisin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Häring, Dietmar; Schreier, Peter

    The increasing demand for enzymes as highly selective, mild, and environmentally benign catalysts is often limited by the lack of an enzyme with the desired catalytic activity or substrate selectivity and by their instability in biotechnological processes. The previous answers to these problems comprised genetically engineered enzymes and several classes of enzyme mimics. Here we describe the potential of chemical enzyme engineering: native enzymes can be modified by merely chemical means and basic equipment yielding so-called semisynthetic enzymes. Thus, the high substrate selectivity of the enzymatic peptide framework is combined with the catalytic versatility of a synthetic active site. We illustrate the potential of chemically engineered enzymes with the conception of the semisynthetic peroxidase seleno-subtilisin. First, the serine endoprotease subtilisin was crystallized and cross-linked with glutaraldehyde to give cross-linked enzyme crystals which were found to be insoluble in water or organic solvents and highly stable. Second, serine 221 in the active site (Enz-OH) was chemically converted into an oxidized derivative of selenocystein (Enz-SeO2H). As a consequence, the former proteolytic enzyme gained peroxidase activity and catalyzed the selective reduction of hydroperoxides. Due to the identical binding sites of the semisynthetic peroxidase and the protease, the substrate selectivity of seleno-subtilisin was predictable in view of the well-known selectivity of subtilisin.

  18. Predicting the risk of toxic blooms of golden alga from cell abundance and environmental covariates

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Patino, Reynaldo; VanLandeghem, Matthew M.; Denny, Shawn

    2016-01-01

    Golden alga (Prymnesium parvum) is a toxic haptophyte that has caused considerable ecological damage to marine and inland aquatic ecosystems worldwide. Studies focused primarily on laboratory cultures have indicated that toxicity is poorly correlated with the abundance of golden alga cells. This relationship, however, has not been rigorously evaluated in the field where environmental conditions are much different. The ability to predict toxicity using readily measured environmental variables and golden alga abundance would allow managers rapid assessments of ichthyotoxicity potential without laboratory bioassay confirmation, which requires additional resources to accomplish. To assess the potential utility of these relationships, several a priori models relating lethal levels of golden alga ichthyotoxicity to golden alga abundance and environmental covariates were constructed. Model parameters were estimated using archived data from four river basins in Texas and New Mexico (Colorado, Brazos, Red, Pecos). Model predictive ability was quantified using cross-validation, sensitivity, and specificity, and the relative ranking of environmental covariate models was determined by Akaike Information Criterion values and Akaike weights. Overall, abundance was a generally good predictor of ichthyotoxicity as cross validation of golden alga abundance-only models ranged from ∼ 80% to ∼ 90% (leave-one-out cross-validation). Environmental covariates improved predictions, especially the ability to predict lethally toxic events (i.e., increased sensitivity), and top-ranked environmental covariate models differed among the four basins. These associations may be useful for monitoring as well as understanding the abiotic factors that influence toxicity during blooms.

  19. Advancing the Selection of Neurodevelopmental Measures in Epidemiological Studies of Environmental Chemical Exposure and Health Effects

    PubMed Central

    Youngstrom, Eric; LaKind, Judy S.; Kenworthy, Lauren; Lipkin, Paul H.; Goodman, Michael; Squibb, Katherine; Mattison, Donald R.; Anthony, Bruno J.; Anthony, Laura Gutermuth

    2010-01-01

    With research suggesting increasing incidence of pediatric neurodevelopmental disorders, questions regarding etiology continue to be raised. Neurodevelopmental function tests have been used in epidemiology studies to evaluate relationships between environmental chemical exposures and neurodevelopmental deficits. Limitations of currently used tests and difficulties with their interpretation have been described, but a comprehensive critical examination of tests commonly used in studies of environmental chemicals and pediatric neurodevelopmental disorders has not been conducted. We provide here a listing and critical evaluation of commonly used neurodevelopmental tests in studies exploring effects from chemical exposures and recommend measures that are not often used, but should be considered. We also discuss important considerations in selecting appropriate tests and provide a case study by reviewing the literature on polychlorinated biphenyls. PMID:20195443

  20. The Tox21 robotic platform for the assessment of environmental chemicals--from vision to reality.

    PubMed

    Attene-Ramos, Matias S; Miller, Nicole; Huang, Ruili; Michael, Sam; Itkin, Misha; Kavlock, Robert J; Austin, Christopher P; Shinn, Paul; Simeonov, Anton; Tice, Raymond R; Xia, Menghang

    2013-08-01

    Since its establishment in 2008, the US Tox21 inter-agency collaboration has made great progress in developing and evaluating cellular models for the evaluation of environmental chemicals as a proof of principle. Currently, the program has entered its production phase (Tox21 Phase II) focusing initially on the areas of modulation of nuclear receptors and stress response pathways. During Tox21 Phase II, the set of chemicals to be tested has been expanded to nearly 10,000 (10K) compounds and a fully automated screening platform has been implemented. The Tox21 robotic system combined with informatics efforts is capable of screening and profiling the collection of 10K environmental chemicals in triplicate in a week. In this article, we describe the Tox21 screening process, compound library preparation, data processing, and robotic system validation.

  1. Environmental Chemical Exposures and Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Review of the Epidemiological Evidence

    PubMed Central

    Kalkbrenner, Amy E.; Schmidt, Rebecca J.; Penlesky, Annie C.

    2016-01-01

    In the past decade, the number of epidemiological publications addressing environmental chemical exposures and autism has grown tremendously. These studies are important because it is now understood that environmental factors play a larger role in causing autism than previously thought and because they address modifiable risk factors that may open up avenues for the primary prevention of the disability associated with autism. In this review, we covered studies of autism and estimates of exposure to tobacco, air pollutants, volatile organic compounds and solvents, metals (from air, occupation, diet, dental amalgams, and thimerosal-containing vaccines), pesticides, and organic endocrine-disrupting compounds such as flame retardants, non-stick chemicals, phthalates, and bisphenol A. We included studies that had individual-level data on autism, exposure measures pertaining to pregnancy or the 1st year of life, valid comparison groups, control for confounders, and adequate sample sizes. Despite the inherent error in the measurement of many of these environmental exposures, which is likely to attenuate observed associations, some environmental exposures showed associations with autism, especially traffic-related air pollutants, some metals, and several pesticides, with suggestive trends for some volatile organic compounds (e.g., methylene chloride, trichloroethylene, and styrene) and phthalates. Whether any of these play a causal role requires further study. Given the limited scope of these publications, other environmental chemicals cannot be ruled out, but have not yet been adequately studied. Future research that addresses these and additional environmental chemicals, including their most common routes of exposures, with accurate exposure measurement pertaining to several developmental windows, is essential to guide efforts for the prevention of the neurodevelopmental damage that manifests in autism symptoms. PMID:25199954

  2. Environmental chemical exposures and autism spectrum disorders: a review of the epidemiological evidence.

    PubMed

    Kalkbrenner, Amy E; Schmidt, Rebecca J; Penlesky, Annie C

    2014-11-01

    In the past decade, the number of epidemiological publications addressing environmental chemical exposures and autism has grown tremendously. These studies are important because it is now understood that environmental factors play a larger role in causing autism than previously thought and because they address modifiable risk factors that may open up avenues for the primary prevention of the disability associated with autism. In this review, we covered studies of autism and estimates of exposure to tobacco, air pollutants, volatile organic compounds and solvents, metals (from air, occupation, diet, dental amalgams, and thimerosal-containing vaccines), pesticides, and organic endocrine-disrupting compounds such as flame retardants, non-stick chemicals, phthalates, and bisphenol A. We included studies that had individual-level data on autism, exposure measures pertaining to pregnancy or the 1st year of life, valid comparison groups, control for confounders, and adequate sample sizes. Despite the inherent error in the measurement of many of these environmental exposures, which is likely to attenuate observed associations, some environmental exposures showed associations with autism, especially traffic-related air pollutants, some metals, and several pesticides, with suggestive trends for some volatile organic compounds (e.g., methylene chloride, trichloroethylene, and styrene) and phthalates. Whether any of these play a causal role requires further study. Given the limited scope of these publications, other environmental chemicals cannot be ruled out, but have not yet been adequately studied. Future research that addresses these and additional environmental chemicals, including their most common routes of exposures, with accurate exposure measurement pertaining to several developmental windows, is essential to guide efforts for the prevention of the neurodevelopmental damage that manifests in autism symptoms.

  3. Integrating environmental and genetic effects to predict responses of tree populations to climate.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tongli; O'Neill, Gregory A; Aitken, Sally N

    2010-01-01

    Climate is a major environmental factor affecting the phenotype of trees and is also a critical agent of natural selection that has molded among-population genetic variation. Population response functions describe the environmental effect of planting site climates on the performance of a single population, whereas transfer functions describe among-population genetic variation molded by natural selection for climate. Although these approaches are widely used to predict the responses of trees to climate change, both have limitations. We present a novel approach that integrates both genetic and environmental effects into a single "universal response function" (URF) to better predict the influence of climate on phenotypes. Using a large lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta Dougl. ex Loud.) field transplant experiment composed of 140 populations planted on 62 sites to demonstrate the methodology, we show that the URF makes full use of data from provenance trials to: (1) improve predictions of climate change impacts on phenotypes; (2) reduce the size and cost of future provenance trials without compromising predictive power; (3) more fully exploit existing, less comprehensive provenance tests; (4) quantify and compare environmental and genetic effects of climate on population performance; and (5) predict the performance of any population growing in any climate. Finally, we discuss how the last attribute allows the URF to be used as a mechanistic model to predict population and species ranges for the future and to guide assisted migration of seed for reforestation, restoration, or afforestation and genetic conservation in a changing climate.

  4. Prediction of the Intrinsic Hydrogen Bond Acceptor Strength of Chemical Substances from Molecular Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwöbel, Johannes; Ebert, Ralf-Uwe; Kühne, Ralph; Schüürmann, Gerrit

    2009-08-01

    Hydrogen bonding affects the partitioning of organic compounds between environmental and biological compartments as well as the three-dimensional shape of macromolecules. Using the semiempirical quantum chemical AM1 level of calculation, we have developed a model to predict the site-specific hydrogen bond (HB) acceptor strength from ground-state properties of the individual compounds. At present, the model parametrization is confined to compounds with one HB acceptor site of the following atom types: N, O, S, F, Cl, and Br that act as lone-pair HB acceptors, and π-electron (aromatic or conjugated) systems with the associated C atoms as particularly weak HB acceptors. The HB acceptor strength is expressed in terms of the Abraham parameter B and calculated from local molecular parameters, taking into account electrostatic, polarizability, and charge transfer contributions according to the Morokuma concept. For a data set of 383 compounds, the squared correlation coefficient r2 is 0.97 when electrostatic potential (ESP) derived net atomic charges are employed, and the root-mean-square (rms) error is 0.04 that is in the range of experimental uncertainty. The model is validated using an extended leave-50%-out approach, and its performance is comparatively analyzed with the ones of earlier introduced ab initio (HF/6-31G**) and density functional theory (B3LYP/6-31G**) models as well as of two increment methods with respect to the total compound set as well as HB acceptor type subsets. The discussion includes an explorative model application to amides and organophosphates that demonstrates the robustness of the approach, and further opportunities for model extensions.

  5. Predicting acute aquatic toxicity of structurally diverse chemicals in fish using artificial intelligence approaches.

    PubMed

    Singh, Kunwar P; Gupta, Shikha; Rai, Premanjali

    2013-09-01

    The research aims to develop global modeling tools capable of categorizing structurally diverse chemicals in various toxicity classes according to the EEC and European Community directives, and to predict their acute toxicity in fathead minnow using set of selected molecular descriptors. Accordingly, artificial intelligence approach based classification and regression models, such as probabilistic neural networks (PNN), generalized regression neural networks (GRNN), multilayer perceptron neural network (MLPN), radial basis function neural network (RBFN), support vector machines (SVM), gene expression programming (GEP), and decision tree (DT) were constructed using the experimental toxicity data. Diversity and non-linearity in the chemicals' data were tested using the Tanimoto similarity index and Brock-Dechert-Scheinkman statistics. Predictive and generalization abilities of various models constructed here were compared using several statistical parameters. PNN and GRNN models performed relatively better than MLPN, RBFN, SVM, GEP, and DT. Both in two and four category classifications, PNN yielded a considerably high accuracy of classification in training (95.85 percent and 90.07 percent) and validation data (91.30 percent and 86.96 percent), respectively. GRNN rendered a high correlation between the measured and model predicted -log LC50 values both for the training (0.929) and validation (0.910) data and low prediction errors (RMSE) of 0.52 and 0.49 for two sets. Efficiency of the selected PNN and GRNN models in predicting acute toxicity of new chemicals was adequately validated using external datasets of different fish species (fathead minnow, bluegill, trout, and guppy). The PNN and GRNN models showed good predictive and generalization abilities and can be used as tools for predicting toxicities of structurally diverse chemical compounds.

  6. Surface plasmon resonance of Au-Cu bimetallic nanoparticles predicted by a quasi-chemical model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Su, Yen-Hsun; Wang, Wen-Lin

    2013-10-01

    Au-Cu alloys are functional materials with nonlinear optical applications. However, the optical properties of such alloys are difficult to predict due to the random mixing of materials. In this paper, we present a quasi-chemical model to simulate the optical properties of Au-Cu alloy systems based on the mixing of Gibbs free energy. This model is also able to predict the position of the surface plasmon resonance peaks for Au-Cu alloy nanoparticles. The model can be applied to predict the optical properties of alloy systems in the fields of plasmonics and nanophotonics.

  7. Environmental properties and aquatic hazard assessment of anionic surfactants: physico-chemical, environmental fate and ecotoxicity properties.

    PubMed

    Könnecker, Gustav; Regelmann, Jürgen; Belanger, Scott; Gamon, Konrad; Sedlak, Richard

    2011-09-01

    This paper summarizes the environmental hazard assessment of physicochemical properties, environmental fate and behavior and the ecotoxicity of a category of 61 anionic surfactants (ANS), comprised of alkyl sulfates (AS), primary alkane sulfonates (PAS) and alpha-olefin sulfonates (AOS) under the High Production Volume Chemicals Program of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The most important common structural feature of the category members examined here is the presence of a predominantly linear aliphatic hydrocarbon chain with a polar sulfate or sulfonate group, neutralized with a counter-ion. The hydrophobic hydrocarbon chain (with a length between C(8) and C(18)) and the polar sulfate or sulfonate groups confer surfactant properties and enable the commercial use of these substances as anionic surfactants. The close structural similarities lead to physico-chemical properties and environmental fate characteristics which follow a regular pattern and justify the applied read-across within a category approach. Common physical and/or biological properties result in structurally similar breakdown products and are, together with the surfactant properties, responsible for similar environmental behavior. The structural similarities result in the same mode of ecotoxic action. Within each of the three sub-categories of ANS the most important parameter influencing ecotoxicity is the varying length of the alkyl chain. Although the counter-ion may also influence the physico-chemical properties, there is no indication that it significantly affects chemical reactivity, environmental fate and behavior or ecotoxicity of these chemicals. Deduced from physico-chemical and surfactancy properties, the main target compartment for the substances of the ANS category is the hydrosphere. They are quantitatively removed in waste water treatment plants, mainly by biodegradation. Quantitative removal in biological treatment plants is reflected by low AS

  8. Species-specific predictive models of developmental toxicity using the ToxCast chemical library

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPA’s ToxCastTM project is profiling the in vitro bioactivity of chemicals to generate predictive models that correlate with observed in vivo toxicity. In vitro profiling methods are based on ToxCast data, consisting of over 600 high-throughput screening (HTS) and high-content sc...

  9. Prediction of chemical contaminants and food compositions by near infrared spectroscopy

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Prediction of Food Adulteration by Infrared Spectroscopy H. Zhuang Quality and Safety Assessment Research Unit, ARS-USDA, 950 College Station Road, Athens, GA 30605 Food adulteration, including both chemical contamination and composition alternation, has been one of major quality and/or safety c...

  10. Can phylogeny predict chemical diversity and potential medicinal activity of plants? A case study of Amaryllidaceae

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    During evolution, plants and other organisms have developed a diversity of chemical defences, leading to the evolution of various groups of specialized metabolites selected for their endogenous biological function. A correlation between phylogeny and biosynthetic pathways could offer a predictive ap...

  11. Species-Specific Predictive Signatures of Developmental Toxicity Using the ToxCast Chemical Library

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPA’s ToxCastTM project is profiling the in vitro bioactivity of chemicals to generate predictive signatures that correlate with observed in vivo toxicity. In vitro profiling methods from ToxCast data consist of over 600 high-throughput screening (HTS) and high-content screening ...

  12. Pharmacokinetics of toxic chemicals in breast milk: use of PBPK models to predict infant exposure.

    PubMed Central

    Clewell, Rebecca A; Gearhart, Jeffery M

    2002-01-01

    Factors controlling the transfer of potentially toxic chemicals in the breast milk of nursing mothers include both chemical characteristics, such as lipophilicity, and physiologic changes during lactation. Physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models can aid in the prediction of infant exposure via breast milk. Benefits of these quantitative models include the ability to account for changing maternal physiology and transfer kinetics, as well as the chemical-specific characteristics, in order to produce more accurate estimates of neonatal risk. A recently developed PBPK model for perchlorate and iodide kinetics in the lactating and neonatal rat demonstrates the utility of PBPK modeling in predicting maternal and neonatal distribution of these two compounds. This model incorporates time-dependent changes in physiologic characteristics and includes interactions between iodide and perchlorate that alter the distribution and kinetics of iodide. PMID:12055064

  13. Development of predictive models for predicting binding affinity of endocrine disrupting chemicals to fish sex hormone-binding globulin.

    PubMed

    Liu, Huihui; Yang, Xianhai; Yin, Cen; Wei, Mengbi; He, Xiao

    2017-02-01

    Disturbing the transport process is a crucial pathway for endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) exerting disrupting endocrine function. However, this mechanism has not received enough attention compared with that of hormones receptors and synthetase. Recently, we have explored the interaction between EDCs and sex hormone-binding globulin of human (hSHBG). In this study, interactions between EDCs and sex hormone-binding globulin of eight fish species (fSHBG) were investigated by employing classification methods and quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR). In the modeling, the relative binding affinity (RBA) of a chemical with 17β-estradiol binding to fSHBG was selected as the endpoint. Classification models were developed for two fish species, while QSAR models were established for the other six fish species. Statistical results indicated that the models had satisfactory goodness of fit, robustness and predictive ability, and that application domain covered a large number of endogenous and exogenous steroidal and non-steroidal chemicals. Additionally, by comparing the log RBA values, it was found that the same chemical may have different affinities for fSHBG from different fish species, thus species diversity should be taken into account. However, the affinity of fSHBG showed a high correlation for fishes within the same Order (i.e., Salmoniformes, Cypriniformes, Perciformes and Siluriformes), thus the fSHBG binding data for one fish species could be used to extrapolate other fish species in the same Order.

  14. PREDICTION METRICS FOR CHEMICAL DETECTION IN LONG-WAVE INFRARED HYPERSPECTRAL IMAGERY

    SciTech Connect

    Chilton, M.; Walsh, S.J.; Daly, D.S.

    2009-01-01

    Natural and man-made chemical processes generate gaseous plumes that may be detected by hyperspectral imaging, which produces a matrix of spectra affected by the chemical constituents of the plume, the atmosphere, the bounding background surface and instrument noise. A physics-based model of observed radiance shows that high chemical absorbance and low background emissivity result in a larger chemical signature. Using simulated hyperspectral imagery, this study investigated two metrics which exploited this relationship. The objective was to explore how well the chosen metrics predicted when a chemical would be more easily detected when comparing one background type to another. The two predictor metrics correctly rank ordered the backgrounds for about 94% of the chemicals tested as compared to the background rank orders from Whitened Matched Filtering (a detection algorithm) of the simulated spectra. These results suggest that the metrics provide a reasonable summary of how the background emissivity and chemical absorbance interact to produce the at-sensor chemical signal. This study suggests that similarly effective predictors that account for more general physical conditions may be derived.

  15. Behaviour of chemical respiratory allergens in novel predictive methods for skin sensitisation.

    PubMed

    Basketter, David; Poole, Alan; Kimber, Ian

    2017-03-06

    Asthma resulting from sensitisation of the respiratory tract to chemicals is an important occupational health issue, presenting many toxicological challenges. Most importantly there are no recognised predictive methods for respiratory allergens. Nevertheless, it has been found that all known chemical respiratory allergens elicit positive responses in assays for skin sensitising chemicals. Thus, chemicals failing to induce a positive response in skin sensitisation assays such as the local lymph node assay (LLNA) lack not only skin sensitising activity, but also the potential to cause respiratory sensitisation. However, it is unclear whether it will be possible to regard chemicals that are negative in in vitro skin sensitisation tests also as lacking respiratory sensitising activity. To address this, the behaviour of chemical respiratory allergens in the LLNA and in recently validated non-animal tests for skin sensitisation have been examined. Most chemical respiratory allergens are positive in one or more newly validated non-animal test methods, although the situation varies between individual assays. The use of an integrated testing strategy could provide a basis for recognition of most respiratory sensitising chemicals. However, a more complete picture of the performance characteristics of such tests is required before specific recommendations can be made.

  16. Identification and evaluation of computer models for predicting environmental concentrations of pharmaceuticals and veterinary products in the Nordic environment.

    PubMed

    Wajsman, David; Rudén, Christina

    2006-01-01

    According to European Union Council directive 2001/83, an application for the marketing authorization of a medicinal product shall be accompanied by an environmental risk assessment, including an exposure assessment. Computerized exposure models constitute an important tool in predicting environmental exposure to substances yet to be introduced on the market. This paper reports the process of identifying appropriate exposure models for estimating PECs (Predicted Environmental Concentrations) for pharmaceuticals and veterinary products, focusing on emissions to Swedish aquatic and terrestrial environments via water and sludge from sewage treatment plants. From a large number of information sources, a set of 181 potentially relevant exposure models was identified. A process of scrutinizing and testing these models resulted in a final selection of two models, namely SimpleTreat 3.1 that is used to estimate distribution and elimination of chemicals in sewage treatment plants (resulting in a PEC), and VetPec, suited for veterinary products, that estimates PEC in soil (including pore water), groundwater, and surface water. It is concluded that there is still potential for further development of exposure model(s) specifically designed for pharmaceutical emissions to the Nordic environment and climate. Furthermore, increased regulatory data requirements would facilitate the use of existing models, and improve the quality of the output data from these models.

  17. Performance predictions for solar-chemical converters based on photoelectrochemical I-V curves

    SciTech Connect

    Luttmer, J.D.; Trachtenberg, I.

    1985-06-01

    Texas Instruments' solar energy system contains a solar-chemical converter (SCC) which converts solar energy into chemical energy via the electrolysis of hydrobromic acid (HBr) into hydrogen (H/sub 2/) and bromine (Br/sub 2/). Previous predictions of SCC performance have employed electrical dry-probe data and a computer simulation model to predict the H/sub 2/ generation rates. The method of prediction described here makes use of the photoelectrochemical Icurves to determine the ''wet'' probe parameters of V /SUB oc/ J /SUB sc/ FF, and efficiency for anodes and cathodes. The advantages of this technique over the dry-probe/computer simulation method are discussed. A comparison of predicted and measured H/sub 2/ generation rates is presented. Solar to chemical efficiencies of 8.6% have been both predicted and measured for the electrolysis of 48% HBr to hydrogen and bromine by a full anode/cathode array. Individual cathode solar to hydrogen efficiencies of 9.5% have been obtained.

  18. Prediction of aqueous solubility, vapor pressure and critical micelle concentration for aquatic partitioning of perfluorinated chemicals.

    PubMed

    Bhhatarai, Barun; Gramatica, Paola

    2011-10-01

    The majority of perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) are of increasing risk to biota and environment due to their physicochemical stability, wide transport in the environment and difficulty in biodegradation. It is necessary to identify and prioritize these harmful PFCs and to characterize their physicochemical properties that govern the solubility, distribution and fate of these chemicals in an aquatic ecosystem. Therefore, available experimental data (10-35 compounds) of three important properties: aqueous solubility (AqS), vapor pressure (VP) and critical micelle concentration (CMC) on per- and polyfluorinated compounds were collected for quantitative structure-property relationship (QSPR) modeling. Simple and robust models based on theoretical molecular descriptors were developed and externally validated for predictivity. Model predictions on selected PFCs were compared with available experimental data and other published in silico predictions. The structural applicability domains (AD) of the models were verified on a bigger data set of 221 compounds. The predicted properties of the chemicals that are within the AD, are reliable, and they help to reduce the wide data gap that exists. Moreover, the predictions of AqS, VP, and CMC of most common PFCs were evaluated to understand the aquatic partitioning and to derive a relation with the available experimental data of bioconcentration factor (BCF).

  19. Study of improved methods for predicting chemical equilibria. Final technical report, April 1, 1993--August 31, 1997

    SciTech Connect

    Lenz, T.G.; Vaughan, J.D.

    1997-10-01

    A long-standing goal of chemical engineers and chemists has been the development of techniques for accurate prediction of the thermodynamic properties of isolated molecules. The thermochemical functions for an ideal gas then provide a means of computing chemical equilibria, and such computations can be extended to condensed phase chemical equilibria with appropriate physical property data. Such capability for predicting diverse chemical equilibria is important in today`s competitive international economic environment, where bringing new products to market rapidly and efficiently is crucial. The purpose of this project has been to develop such computational methods for predicting chemical equilibria.

  20. Environmental factors influence on chemical polymorphism of the essential oils of Lychnophora ericoides.

    PubMed

    Curado, Marco A; Oliveira, Carolina B A; Jesus, José G; Santos, Suzana C; Seraphin, José C; Ferri, Pedro H

    2006-11-01

    Lychnophora ericoides is a Brazilian medicinal plant used in folk medicine as an anti-inflammatory and analgesic agent. The essential oils from leaves of two populations with and without scent, collected at 2-month intervals during an 1-year period, were analysed by GC-MS. The results were submitted to principal component and cluster analysis which allowed two groups of essential oils to be distinguished with respect to sampling site and scent: cluster I (Vianópolis site, with specimens exhibiting an aromatic scent) containing a high percentage of alpha-bisabolol (44.7-76.4%) and alpha-cadinol (10.9-23.5%), and cluster II (Cristalina site, with specimens without scent) characterised by a high content of (E)-nerolidol (31.3-47.1%) and ar-dihydro-turmerone (4.8-15.4%). The canonical discriminant analysis showed that using the data set of the seven sampling months and (E)-nerolidol and alpha-bisabolol as predictable variables, it was possible to distinguish between the samples harvested according to Cerrado seasons, dry winter (May-September) and humid summer (November-March). In addition, canonical correlation analysis between the soil sampling sites and the populations revealed a significant relationship between oil components and edaphic factors. Oxygenated sesquiterpenes and potential acidity, Al saturation, cationic exchange capacity, silt, and sand load as the first canonical variate were fairly strongly related to samples collected in Vianópolis site. On the other hand, monoterpenes and sesquiterpene hydrocarbons were strongly related to chemical balance in soils (organic matter, P and base saturation), which is related to samples at the Cristalina site. The chemovariation observed appears to be environmentally determined.

  1. Protein backbone and sidechain torsion angles predicted from NMR chemical shifts using artificial neural networks

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Yang; Bax, Ad

    2013-01-01

    A new program, TALOS-N, is introduced for predicting protein backbone torsion angles from NMR chemical shifts. The program relies far more extensively on the use of trained artificial neural networks than its predecessor, TALOS+. Validation on an independent set of proteins indicates that backbone torsion angles can be predicted for a larger, ≥ 90% fraction of the residues, with an error rate smaller than ca 3.5%, using an acceptance criterion that is nearly two-fold tighter than that used previously, and a root mean square difference between predicted and crystallographically observed (φ,ψ) torsion angles of ca 12°. TALOS-N also reports sidechain χ1 rotameric states for about 50% of the residues, and a consistency with reference structures of 89%. The program includes a neural network trained to identify secondary structure from residue sequence and chemical shifts. PMID:23728592

  2. Governance of complex socio-environmental risks: the case of hazardous chemicals in the Baltic Sea.

    PubMed

    Karlsson, Mikael; Gilek, Michael; Udovyk, Oksana

    2011-03-01

    Complex socio-environmental risks challenge society. In response to scientific uncertainty and sociopolitical controversies, environmental governance, precaution, and the ecosystem approach to management are held forward as complements to governmental risk-based sector-restricted regulation. We analyze this development for hazardous substances in the Baltic Sea. Based on interviews and policy analysis, we study informal governance and, in particular, four central EU and international policies, and investigate how present governance relates to risks and objectives at hand. While showing emergence of broader governance approaches, we conclude that central objectives will not likely be met. Furthermore, we question the quest for broad environmental governance and emphasize the value of command and control regulation, if it implements precaution. These findings contribute to the theorizing on environmental (risk) governance. Finally, we provide some ideas that could help development and implementation of risk policies for hazardous chemicals in the Baltic Sea as well as other complex risks.

  3. Simulating Microdosimetry of Environmental Chemicals for EPA’s Virtual Liver

    EPA Science Inventory

    US EPA Virtual Liver (v-Liver) is a cellular systems model of hepatic tissues aimed at predicting chemical-induced adverse effects through agent-based modeling. A primary objective of the project is to extrapolate in vitro data to in vivo outcomes. Agent-based approaches to tissu...

  4. Characterization Of Environmentally Relevant Chemical And Physical Properties Of Silver Nano-Particles

    EPA Science Inventory

    Understanding and predicting the fate and transport of nano-materials in the environment requires a detailed characterization of the chemical and physical properties that control fate and transport. In the current study, we have evaluated the surface charge, aggregation potentia...

  5. Virtual screening for environmental pollutants: structure-activity relationships applied to a database of industrial chemicals.

    PubMed

    Oberg, Tomas

    2006-04-01

    The current risk paradigm calls for individual consideration and evaluation of each separate environmental pollutant, but this does not reflect accurately the cumulative impact of anthropogenic chemicals. In the present study, previously validated structure-activity relationships were used to estimate simultaneously the baseline toxicity and atmospheric persistence of approximately 50,000 compounds. The results from this virtual screening indicate fairly stable statistical distributions among small anthropogenic compounds. The baseline toxicity was not changed much by halogen substitution, but a distinct increase seemed to occur in the environmental persistence with increased halogenation. The ratio of the atmospheric half-lives to the median lethal concentrations provides a continuous scale with which to rank and summarize the incremental environmental impacts in a mixture-exposure situation. Halogenated compounds as a group obtained a high ranking in this data set, with well-known pollutants at the very top: DDT metabolites and derivatives, polychlorinated biphenyls, diphenyl ethers and dibenzofurans, chlorinated paraffins, chlorinated benzenes and derivatives, hydrochlorofluorocarbons, and dichlorononylphenol. Environmentally friendly chemicals that obtained the lowest rank are nearly all hydroxylated and water-soluble. Virtual screening can assist with "green chemistry" in designing safe and degradable products and enable assessment of the efficiency in chemicals risk management.

  6. Environmental Chemical Assessment in Clinical Practice: Unveiling the Elephant in the Room.

    PubMed

    Bijlsma, Nicole; Cohen, Marc M

    2016-02-02

    A growing body of evidence suggests chemicals present in air, water, soil, food, building materials and household products are toxicants that contribute to the many chronic diseases typically seen in routine medical practice. Yet, despite calls from numerous organisations to provide clinicians with more training and awareness in environmental health, there are multiple barriers to the clinical assessment of toxic environmental exposures. Recent developments in the fields of systems biology, innovative breakthroughs in biomedical research encompassing the "-omics" fields, and advances in mobile sensing, peer-to-peer networks and big data, provide tools that future clinicians can use to assess environmental chemical exposures in their patients. There is also a need for concerted action at all levels, including actions by individual patients, clinicians, medical educators, regulators, government and non-government organisations, corporations and the wider civil society, to understand the "exposome" and minimise the extent of toxic exposures on current and future generations. Clinical environmental chemical risk assessment may provide a bridge between multiple disciplines that uses new technologies to herald in a new era in personalised medicine that unites clinicians, patients and civil society in the quest to understand and master the links between the environment and human health.

  7. Environmental Chemical Assessment in Clinical Practice: Unveiling the Elephant in the Room

    PubMed Central

    Bijlsma, Nicole; Cohen, Marc M.

    2016-01-01

    A growing body of evidence suggests chemicals present in air, water, soil, food, building materials and household products are toxicants that contribute to the many chronic diseases typically seen in routine medical practice. Yet, despite calls from numerous organisations to provide clinicians with more training and awareness in environmental health, there are multiple barriers to the clinical assessment of toxic environmental exposures. Recent developments in the fields of systems biology, innovative breakthroughs in biomedical research encompassing the “-omics” fields, and advances in mobile sensing, peer-to-peer networks and big data, provide tools that future clinicians can use to assess environmental chemical exposures in their patients. There is also a need for concerted action at all levels, including actions by individual patients, clinicians, medical educators, regulators, government and non-government organisations, corporations and the wider civil society, to understand the “exposome” and minimise the extent of toxic exposures on current and future generations. Clinical environmental chemical risk assessment may provide a bridge between multiple disciplines that uses new technologies to herald in a new era in personalised medicine that unites clinicians, patients and civil society in the quest to understand and master the links between the environment and human health. PMID:26848668

  8. Country-specific chemical signatures of persistent environmental compounds in breast milk.

    PubMed

    Krysiak-Baltyn, K; Toppari, J; Skakkebaek, N E; Jensen, T S; Virtanen, H E; Schramm, K-W; Shen, H; Vartiainen, T; Kiviranta, H; Taboureau, O; Brunak, S; Main, K M

    2010-04-01

    Recent reports have confirmed a worldwide increasing trend of testicular cancer incidence, and a conspicuously high prevalence of this disease and other male reproductive disorders, including cryptorchidism and hypospadias, in Denmark. In contrast, Finland, a similarly industrialized Nordic country, exhibits much lower incidences of these disorders. The reasons behind the observed trends are unexplained, but environmental endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) that affect foetal testis development are probably involved. Levels of persistent chemicals in breast milk can be considered a proxy for exposure of the foetus to such agents. Therefore, we undertook a comprehensive ecological study of 121 EDCs, including the persistent compounds dioxins, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), pesticides and flame retardants, and non-persistent phthalates, in 68 breast milk samples from Denmark and Finland to compare exposure of mothers to this environmental mixture of EDCs. Using sophisticated, bioinformatic tools in our analysis, we reveal, for the first time, distinct country-specific chemical signatures of EDCs with Danes having generally higher exposure than Finns to persistent bioaccumulative chemicals, whereas there was no country-specific pattern with regard to the non-persistent phthalates. Importantly, EDC levels, including some dioxins, PCBs and some pesticides (hexachlorobenzene and dieldrin) were significantly higher in Denmark than in Finland. As these classes of EDCs have been implicated in testicular cancer or in adversely affecting development of the foetal testis in humans and animals, our findings reinforce the view that environmental exposure to EDCs may explain some of the temporal and between-country differences in incidence of male reproductive disorders.

  9. Joint actions of environmental nonionizing electromagnetic fields and chemical pollution in cancer promotion.

    PubMed

    Adey, W R

    1990-06-01

    Studies of environmental electromagnetic (EM) field interactions in tissues have contributed to a new understanding of both normal growth and the biology of cancer in cell growth. From cancer research comes a floodtide of new knowledge about the disruption of communication by cancer-promoting chemicals with an onset of unregulated growth. Bioelectromagnetic research reveals clear evidence of joint actions at cell membranes of chemical cancer promoters and environmental electromagnetic fields. The union of these two disciplines has resulted in the first major new approach to tumor formation in 75 years, directing attention to dysfunctions in inward and outward streams of signals at cell membranes, rather than to damage DNA in cell nuclei, and to synergic actions of chemical pollutants and environmental electromagnetic fields. We are witnesses and, in great measure, participants in one of the great revolutions in the history of biology. In little more than a century, we have moved from organs, to tissues, to cells, and finally to the molecules that are the elegant fabric of living tissues. Today, we stand at a new frontier. It may be more difficult to comprehend, but it is far more significant; for it is at the atomic level, rather than the molecular, that physical, rather than chemical, processes appear to shape the flow of signals that are at the essence of living matter. To pursue these problems in the environment and in the laboratory, our needs for further research with appropriate budgets are great.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  10. A two-scale system to identify environmental risk of chemical industry clusters.

    PubMed

    Huang, Lei; Wan, Wenbo; Li, Fengying; Li, Bing; Yang, Jie; Bi, Jun

    2011-02-15

    Recent reform policies in China have spurred rapid industrial development. This has led to a large increase in chemical accidents, which may have catastrophic impacts on the local population and environment. As industrial facilities become more complex, it becomes more difficult to control and mitigate the risks associated with chemical accidents. In this study, we propose a two-scale system for assessing the environmental risk level of chemical industry clusters. A series of risk early warning indices for both the plant-specific level and regional clusters level are used in this system. Firstly, at the enterprise scale, a risk early warning index is constructed using inputs such as the presence of hazardous materials, the operation of critical plant equipment and the efficiency of extant management techniques. Secondly, an index for quantifying risks on regional scales depends on environmental, economic, and social conditions as well as the specific enterprises' components. As an illustration, the system is applied to a case study involving a five-plant chemical industry cluster in Jiangsu province, China. A geographical information system-based methodology is used to obtain a composite index score for each mesh of the five plants. The results prove that the proposed two-scale early warning system can efficiently identify environmental risk and help guide emergency responses at both the enterprise and cluster level.

  11. Characterizing the Estrogenic Potential of 1060 Environmental Chemicals by Assessing Growth Kinetics in T47D Cells

    EPA Science Inventory

    In order to detect environmental chemicals that pose a risk of endocrine disruption, high-throughput screening (HTS) tests capable of testing thousands of environmental chemicals are needed. Alteration of estrogen signaling has been implicated in a variety of adverse health effec...

  12. International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics opinion on reproductive health impacts of exposure to toxic environmental chemicals.

    PubMed

    Di Renzo, Gian Carlo; Conry, Jeanne A; Blake, Jennifer; DeFrancesco, Mark S; DeNicola, Nathaniel; Martin, James N; McCue, Kelly A; Richmond, David; Shah, Abid; Sutton, Patrice; Woodruff, Tracey J; van der Poel, Sheryl Ziemin; Giudice, Linda C

    2015-12-01

    Exposure to toxic environmental chemicals during pregnancy and breastfeeding is ubiquitous and is a threat to healthy human reproduction. There are tens of thousands of chemicals in global commerce, and even small exposures to toxic chemicals during pregnancy can trigger adverse health consequences. Exposure to toxic environmental chemicals and related health outcomes are inequitably distributed within and between countries; universally, the consequences of exposure are disproportionately borne by people with low incomes. Discrimination, other social factors, economic factors, and occupation impact risk of exposure and harm. Documented links between prenatal exposure to environmental chemicals and adverse health outcomes span the life course and include impacts on fertility and pregnancy, neurodevelopment, and cancer. The global health and economic burden related to toxic environmental chemicals is in excess of millions of deaths and billions of dollars every year. On the basis of accumulating robust evidence of exposures and adverse health impacts related to toxic environmental chemicals, the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) joins other leading reproductive health professional societies in calling for timely action to prevent harm. FIGO recommends that reproductive and other health professionals advocate for policies to prevent exposure to toxic environmental chemicals, work to ensure a healthy food system for all, make environmental health part of health care, and champion environmental justice.

  13. A risk-based methodology for ranking environmental chemical stressors at the regional scale.

    PubMed

    Giubilato, Elisa; Zabeo, Alex; Critto, Andrea; Giove, Silvio; Bierkens, Johan; Den Hond, Elly; Marcomini, Antonio

    2014-04-01

    A "Risk-based Tool for the Regional Ranking of Environmental Chemical Stressors" has been developed, aimed at supporting decision-makers in the identification of priority environmental contaminants, as well as priority areas, to be further assessed. The tool implements a methodology based on a quantitative Weight-of-Evidence approach, integrating three types of information, identified as "Lines-of-Evidence" (LoE), namely: LoE "Environmental Contamination" (including data on chemical contamination in environmental matrices in the region, thus providing information on potential population exposure), LoE "Intake" (including results from human biomonitoring studies, i.e. concentration of chemicals in human biological matrices, thus providing an integrated estimation of exposure) and LoE "Observed Effects" (including information on the incidence of adverse health outcomes associated with environmental exposure to chemicals). A Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) methodology based on fuzzy logic has been developed to support the integration of information related to these three LoEs for each chemical stressor. The tool allows one to rank chemical stressors at different spatial scales, such as at the regional level as well as within each sub-area (e.g., counties). Moreover, it supports the identification of priority sub-areas within the region, where environmental and health data suggest possible adverse health effects and thus more investigation efforts are needed. To evaluate the performance of this newly developed tool, a case-study in the Flemish region (north of Belgium) has been selected. In the case-study, data on soil contamination by metals and organic contaminants were integrated with data on exposure and effect biomarkers measured in adolescents within the framework of the human biomonitoring study performed by the Flemish Centre of Expertise on Environment and Health in the period 2002-2006. The case-study demonstrated the performance of the tool in

  14. Prediction Metrics for Chemical Detection in Long-Wave Infrared Hyperspectral Imagery

    SciTech Connect

    Chilton, Marie C.; Walsh, Stephen J.; Daly, Don S.

    2009-01-29

    A natural or anthropogenic process often generates a signature gas plume whose chemical constituents may be identified using hyperspectral imagery. A hyperspectral image is a pixel-indexed set of spectra where each spectrum reflects the chemical constituents of the plume, the atmosphere, the bounding background surface, and instrument noise. This study explored the relationship between gas absorbance and background emissivity across the long-wave infrared (LWIR) spectrum and how they affect relative gas detection sensitivity. The physics-based model for the observed radiance shows that high gas absorbance coupled with low background emissivity at a single wavenumber results in a stronger recorded radiance. Two sensitivity measures were developed to predict relative probability of detection using chemical absorbance and background emissivity: one focused on a single wavenumber while another accounted for the entire spectrum. The predictive abilities of these measures were compared to synthetic image analysis. This study simulated images with 499 distinct gases at each of 6 concentrations over 6 different background surfaces with the atmosphere and level of instrument noise held constant. The Whitened Matched Filter was used to define gas detection from an image spectrum. The estimate of a chemical’s probability of detection at a given concentration over a specific background was the proportion of detections in 500 trials. Of the 499 chemicals used in the images, 276 had estimated probabilities of detection below 0.2 across all backgrounds and concentrations; these chemicals were removed from the study. For 92.8 percent of the remaining chemicals, the single channel measure correctly predicted the background over which the chemical had the largest relative probability of detection. Further, the measure which accounted for information across all wavenumbers predicted the background over which the chemical had the largest relative probability of detection for 93

  15. Effects of environmental chemicals on fish thyroid function: Implications for fisheries and aquaculture in Australia.

    PubMed

    Nugegoda, Dayanthi; Kibria, Golam

    2017-04-01

    Numerous environmental stressors exert acute or chronic effects on the fish thyroid cascade. Such effects could be mediated via thyroidal alterations, imbalance of plasma T4 and T3 levels or damage to the structure of the thyroidal tissues (thyroid hypertrophy, hyperplasia). The thyroidal system is intricately linked to other endocrine systems in vertebrates including the control of reproduction. Disruption of fish thyroid function by environmental stressors has the potential to result in deleterious effects including the inhibition of sperm production, reduction in egg production, gonad development, ovarian growth, swimming activity, fertilisation and increase in larval mortality. Thyroid hormones play a major role in the development and growth of fish, particularly during their early life stages, thus, thyroid disruption by environmental stressors could inhibit the growth of fish larvae and juveniles in wild fish and cultured species, limit fish seed production and result in a decline in wild fisheries. This review highlights the effects of several environmental toxicants including PBDE, PCBs, PCDD and PCDF, PAH/oil, phthalates, metals, pesticides, mixed pollutants/chemicals, cyanide; and other stressors including acid (low pH) and ammonia, on fish thyroid function. Environmental sources of chemical stressors and appropriate water quality guidelines to protect the freshwater and marine species for the relevant pollutants are also discussed including (when available) the Australian guidelines (2000) and Canadian water quality guidelines (where Australian guidelines are not available). To date there has been no published research on the effects of anthropogenic environmental pollutants on the thyroid system of any native Australian fish species. However, the detection of high risk chemicals (notably PBDEs, PCBs, PAHs, metals and pesticides) in Australian waterways and Australian fish and shellfish implies that thyroid disruption of Australian wild fish and

  16. Interactions between toxic chemicals and natural environmental factors--a meta-analysis and case studies.

    PubMed

    Laskowski, Ryszard; Bednarska, Agnieszka J; Kramarz, Paulina E; Loureiro, Susana; Scheil, Volker; Kudłek, Joanna; Holmstrup, Martin

    2010-08-15

    The paper addresses problems arising from effects of natural environmental factors on toxicity of pollutants to organisms. Most studies on interactions between toxicants and natural factors, including those completed in the EU project NoMiracle (Novel Methods for Integrated Risk Assessment of Cumulative Stressors in Europe) described herein, showed that effects of toxic chemicals on organisms can differ vastly depending purely on external conditions. We compiled data from 61 studies on effects of temperature, moisture and dissolved oxygen on toxicity of a range of chemicals representing pesticides, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, plant protection products of bacterial origin and trace metals. In 62.3% cases significant interactions (p< or =0.05 or less) between natural factors and chemicals were found, reaching 100% for the effect of dissolved oxygen on toxicity of waterborne chemicals. The meta-analysis of the 61 studies showed that the null hypothesis assuming no interactions between toxic chemicals and natural environmental factors should be rejected at p=2.7 x 10(-82) (truncated product method probability). In a few cases of more complex experimental designs, also second-order interactions were found, indicating that natural factors can modify interactions among chemicals. Such data emphasize the necessity of including information on natural factors and their variation in time and across geographic regions in ecological risk assessment. This can be done only if appropriate ecotoxicological test designs are used, in which test organisms are exposed to toxicants at a range of environmental conditions. We advocate designing such tests for the second-tier ecological risk assessment procedures.

  17. Climate-based archetypes for the environmental fate assessment of chemicals.

    PubMed

    Ciuffo, Biagio; Sala, Serenella

    2013-11-15

    Emissions of chemicals have been on the rise for years, and their impacts are greatly influenced by spatial differentiation. Chemicals are usually emitted locally but their impact can be felt both locally and globally, due to their chemical properties and persistence. The variability of environmental parameters in the emission compartment may affect the chemicals' fate and the exposure at different orders of magnitude. The assessment of the environmental fate of chemicals and the inherent spatial differentiation requires the use of multimedia models at various levels of complexity (from a simple box model to complex computational and high-spatial-resolution models). The objective of these models is to support ecological and human health risk assessment, by reducing the uncertainty of chemical impact assessments. The parameterisation of spatially resolved multimedia models is usually based on scenarios of evaluative environments, or on geographical resolutions related to administrative boundaries (e.g. countries/continents) or landscape areas (e.g. watersheds, eco-regions). The choice of the most appropriate scale and scenario is important from a management perspective, as a balance should be reached between a simplified approach and computationally intensive multimedia models. In this paper, which aims to go beyond the more traditional approach based on scale/resolution (cell, country, and basin), we propose and assess climate-based archetypes for the impact assessment of chemicals released in air. We define the archetypes based on the main drivers of spatial variability, which we systematically identify by adopting global sensitivity analysis techniques. A case study that uses the high resolution multimedia model MAPPE (Multimedia Assessment of Pollutant Pathways in the Environment) is presented. Results of the analysis showed that suitable archetypes should be both climate- and chemical-specific, as different chemicals (or groups of them) have different traits

  18. Technical guide for applications of gene expression profiling in human health risk assessment of environmental chemicals.

    PubMed

    Bourdon-Lacombe, Julie A; Moffat, Ivy D; Deveau, Michelle; Husain, Mainul; Auerbach, Scott; Krewski, Daniel; Thomas, Russell S; Bushel, Pierre R; Williams, Andrew; Yauk, Carole L

    2015-07-01

    Toxicogenomics promises to be an important part of future human health risk assessment of environmental chemicals. The application of gene expression profiles (e.g., for hazard identification, chemical prioritization, chemical grouping, mode of action discovery, and quantitative analysis of response) is growing in the literature, but their use in formal risk assessment by regulatory agencies is relatively infrequent. Although additional validations for specific applications are required, gene expression data can be of immediate use for increasing confidence in chemical evaluations. We believe that a primary reason for the current lack of integration is the limited practical guidance available for risk assessment specialists with limited experience in genomics. The present manuscript provides basic information on gene expression profiling, along with guidance on evaluating the quality of genomic experiments and data, and interpretation of results presented in the form of heat maps, pathway analyses and other common approaches. Moreover, potential ways to integrate information from gene expression experiments into current risk assessment are presented using published studies as examples. The primary objective of this work is to facilitate integration of gene expression data into human health risk assessments of environmental chemicals.

  19. From chemical risk assessment to environmental quality management: the challenge for soil protection.

    PubMed

    Bone, James; Head, Martin; Jones, David T; Barraclough, Declan; Archer, Michael; Scheib, Catherine; Flight, Dee; Eggleton, Paul; Voulvoulis, Nikolaos

    2011-01-01

    The 40 years that have passed since the beginning of the 'environmental revolution' has seen a large increase in development of policies for the protection of environmental media and a recognition by the public of the importance of environmental quality. There has been a shift from policy in reaction to high profile events, then to control of releases to single environmental media, and to the present position of moving toward integrated management of all environmental media at present. This development has moved away from classical chemical risk assessment toward environmental holism, including recognition of the ecological value of these media. This work details how policy developments have taken place for air and water, with examples from the USA and EU, in order to compare this with policy development regarding soil. Soil, with quite different policy frameworks and distinct uses, understanding, and threats compared to other environmental media, is currently attracting attention regarding the need for its protection independent of use. Challenges for soil policy are identified and evaluated, and recommendations on how these challenges can be overcome are discussed with relevance to water and air protection policy.

  20. The chemical defensome: environmental sensing and response genes in the Strongylocentrotus purpuratus genome.

    PubMed

    Goldstone, J V; Hamdoun, A; Cole, B J; Howard-Ashby, M; Nebert, D W; Scally, M; Dean, M; Epel, D; Hahn, M E; Stegeman, J J

    2006-12-01

    Metazoan genomes contain large numbers of genes that participate in responses to environmental stressors. We surveyed the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus genome for homologs of gene families thought to protect against chemical stressors; these genes collectively comprise the 'chemical defensome.' Chemical defense genes include cytochromes P450 and other oxidases, various conjugating enzymes, ATP-dependent efflux transporters, oxidative detoxification proteins, and transcription factors that regulate these genes. Together such genes account for more than 400 genes in the sea urchin genome. The transcription factors include homologs of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor, hypoxia-inducible factor, nuclear factor erythroid-derived 2, heat shock factor, and nuclear hormone receptors, which regulate stress-response genes in vertebrates. Some defense gene families, including the ABCC, the UGT, and the CYP families, have undergone expansion in the urchin relative to other deuterostome genomes, whereas the stress sensor gene families do not show such expansion. More than half of the defense genes are expressed during embryonic or larval life stages, indicating their importance during development. This genome-wide survey of chemical defense genes in the sea urchin reveals evolutionary conservation of this network combined with lineage-specific diversification that together suggest the importance of these chemical stress sensing and response mechanisms in early deuterostomes. These results should facilitate future studies on the evolution of chemical defense gene networks and the role of these networks in protecting embryos from chemical stress during development.

  1. Mussel watch - measurements of chemical pollutants in bivalves as one indicator of coastal environmental quality

    SciTech Connect

    Farrington, J.W.; Davis, A.C.; Tripp, B.W.; Phelps, D.K.; Galloway, W.B.

    1987-01-01

    The utility of the bivalve sentinel organism approach to monitoring for some chemicals of environmental concern in coastal and estuarine areas has been evaluated by regional and national programs and by smaller-scale research efforts during the past 15 years. The extent and severity of coastal contamination by chemicals such as polychlorinated biphenyls, chlorinated pesticides, trace metals, and plutonium was assessed in several bivalve sentinel organism programs. Advantages and limitations of this approach are presented and discussed briefly within the context of both national and international efforts.

  2. Machine Learning Predictions of Molecular Properties: Accurate Many-Body Potentials and Nonlocality in Chemical Space.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Katja; Biegler, Franziska; Ramakrishnan, Raghunathan; Pronobis, Wiktor; von Lilienfeld, O Anatole; Müller, Klaus-Robert; Tkatchenko, Alexandre

    2015-06-18

    Simultaneously accurate and efficient prediction of molecular properties throughout chemical compound space is a critical ingredient toward rational compound design in chemical and pharmaceutical industries. Aiming toward this goal, we develop and apply a systematic hierarchy of efficient empirical methods to estimate atomization and total energies of molecules. These methods range from a simple sum over atoms, to addition of bond energies, to pairwise interatomic force fields, reaching to the more sophisticated machine learning approaches that are capable of describing collective interactions between many atoms or bonds. In the case of equilibrium molecular geometries, even simple pairwise force fields demonstrate prediction accuracy comparable to benchmark energies calculated using density functional theory with hybrid exchange-correlation functionals; however, accounting for the collective many-body interactions proves to be essential for approaching the “holy grail” of chemical accuracy of 1 kcal/mol for both equilibrium and out-of-equilibrium geometries. This remarkable accuracy is achieved by a vectorized representation of molecules (so-called Bag of Bonds model) that exhibits strong nonlocality in chemical space. In addition, the same representation allows us to predict accurate electronic properties of molecules, such as their polarizability and molecular frontier orbital energies.

  3. Machine learning predictions of molecular properties: Accurate many-body potentials and nonlocality in chemical space

    DOE PAGES

    Hansen, Katja; Biegler, Franziska; Ramakrishnan, Raghunathan; ...

    2015-06-04

    Simultaneously accurate and efficient prediction of molecular properties throughout chemical compound space is a critical ingredient toward rational compound design in chemical and pharmaceutical industries. Aiming toward this goal, we develop and apply a systematic hierarchy of efficient empirical methods to estimate atomization and total energies of molecules. These methods range from a simple sum over atoms, to addition of bond energies, to pairwise interatomic force fields, reaching to the more sophisticated machine learning approaches that are capable of describing collective interactions between many atoms or bonds. In the case of equilibrium molecular geometries, even simple pairwise force fields demonstratemore » prediction accuracy comparable to benchmark energies calculated using density functional theory with hybrid exchange-correlation functionals; however, accounting for the collective many-body interactions proves to be essential for approaching the “holy grail” of chemical accuracy of 1 kcal/mol for both equilibrium and out-of-equilibrium geometries. This remarkable accuracy is achieved by a vectorized representation of molecules (so-called Bag of Bonds model) that exhibits strong nonlocality in chemical space. The same representation allows us to predict accurate electronic properties of molecules, such as their polarizability and molecular frontier orbital energies.« less

  4. Machine learning predictions of molecular properties: Accurate many-body potentials and nonlocality in chemical space

    SciTech Connect

    Hansen, Katja; Biegler, Franziska; Ramakrishnan, Raghunathan; Pronobis, Wiktor; von Lilienfeld, O. Anatole; Müller, Klaus -Robert; Tkatchenko, Alexandre

    2015-06-04

    Simultaneously accurate and efficient prediction of molecular properties throughout chemical compound space is a critical ingredient toward rational compound design in chemical and pharmaceutical industries. Aiming toward this goal, we develop and apply a systematic hierarchy of efficient empirical methods to estimate atomization and total energies of molecules. These methods range from a simple sum over atoms, to addition of bond energies, to pairwise interatomic force fields, reaching to the more sophisticated machine learning approaches that are capable of describing collective interactions between many atoms or bonds. In the case of equilibrium molecular geometries, even simple pairwise force fields demonstrate prediction accuracy comparable to benchmark energies calculated using density functional theory with hybrid exchange-correlation functionals; however, accounting for the collective many-body interactions proves to be essential for approaching the “holy grail” of chemical accuracy of 1 kcal/mol for both equilibrium and out-of-equilibrium geometries. This remarkable accuracy is achieved by a vectorized representation of molecules (so-called Bag of Bonds model) that exhibits strong nonlocality in chemical space. The same representation allows us to predict accurate electronic properties of molecules, such as their polarizability and molecular frontier orbital energies.

  5. Phenotypic side effects prediction by optimizing correlation with chemical and target profiles of drugs.

    PubMed

    Kanji, Rakesh; Sharma, Abhinav; Bagler, Ganesh

    2015-11-01

    Despite technological progresses and improved understanding of biological systems, discovery of novel drugs is an inefficient, arduous and expensive process. Research and development cost of drugs is unreasonably high, largely attributed to the high attrition rate of candidate drugs due to adverse drug reactions. Computational methods for accurate prediction of drug side effects, rooted in empirical data of drugs, have the potential to enhance the efficacy of the drug discovery process. Identification of features critical for specifying side effects would facilitate efficient computational procedures for their prediction. We devised a generalized ordinary canonical correlation model for prediction of drug side effects based on their chemical properties as well as their target profiles. While the former is based on 2D and 3D chemical features, the latter enumerates a systems-level property of drugs. We find that the model incorporating chemical features outperforms that incorporating target profiles. Furthermore we identified the 2D and 3D chemical properties that yield best results, thereby implying their relevance in specifying adverse drug reactions.

  6. An Energy Balance Model to Predict Chemical Partitioning in a Photosynthetic Microbial Mat

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoehler, Tori M.; Albert, Daniel B.; DesMarais, David J.

    2006-01-01

    Studies of biosignature formation in photosynthetic microbial mat communities offer potentially useful insights with regards to both solar and extrasolar astrobiology. Biosignature formation in such systems results from the chemical transformation of photosynthetically fixed carbon by accessory microorganisms. This fixed carbon represents a source not only of reducing power, but also energy, to these organisms, so that chemical and energy budgets should be coupled. We tested this hypothesis by applying an energy balance model to predict the fate of photosynthetic productivity under dark, anoxic conditions. Fermentation of photosynthetically fixed carbon is taken to be the only source of energy available to cyanobacteria in the absence of light and oxygen, and nitrogen fixation is the principal energy demand. The alternate fate for fixed carbon is to build cyanobacterial biomass with Redfield C:N ratio. The model predicts that, under completely nitrogen-limited conditions, growth is optimized when 78% of fixed carbon stores are directed into fermentative energy generation, with the remainder allocated to growth. These predictions were compared to measurements made on microbial mats that are known to be both nitrogen-limited and populated by actively nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria. In these mats, under dark, anoxic conditions, 82% of fixed carbon stores were diverted into fermentation. The close agreement between these independent approaches suggests that energy balance models may provide a quantitative means of predicting chemical partitioning within such systems - an important step towards understanding how biological productivity is ultimately partitioned into biosignature compounds.

  7. Predicting the Absorption Potential of Chemical Compounds through a Deep Learning Approach.

    PubMed

    Shin, Moonshik; Jang, Dongjin; Nam, Hojung; Lee, Kwang Hyung; Lee, Doheon

    2016-02-26

    The human colorectal carcinoma cell line (Caco-2) is a commonly used in-vitro test that predicts the absorption potential of orally administered drugs. In-silico prediction methods, based on the Caco-2 assay data, may increase the effectiveness of the high-throughput screening of new drug candidates. However, previously developed in-silico models that predict the Caco-2 cellular permeability of chemical compounds use handcrafted features that may be dataset-specific and induce over-fitting problems. Deep Neural Network (DNN) generates high-level features based on non-linear transformations for raw features, which provides high discriminant power and, therefore, creates a good generalized model. We present a DNNbased binary Caco-2 permeability classifier. Our model was constructed based on 663 chemical compounds with in-vitro Caco-2 apparent permeability data. 209 molecular descriptors are used for generating the high-level features during DNN model generation. Dropout regularization is applied to solve the over-fitting problem and the non-linear activation. The Rectified Linear Unit (ReLU) is adopted to reduce the vanishing gradient problem. The results demonstrate that the high-level features generated by the DNN are more robust than handcrafted features for predicting the cellular permeability of structurally diverse chemical compounds in Caco-2 cell lines.

  8. Prediction algorithm for amino acid types with their secondary structure in proteins (PLATON) using chemical shifts.

    PubMed

    Labudde, D; Leitner, D; Krüger, M; Oschkinat, H

    2003-01-01

    The algorithm PLATON is able to assign sets of chemical shifts derived from a single residue to amino acid types with its secondary structure (amino acid species). A subsequent ranking procedure using optionally two different penalty functions yields predictions for possible amino acid species for the given set of chemical shifts. This was demonstrated in the case of the alpha-spectrin SH3 domain and applied to 9 further protein data sets taken from the BioMagRes database. A database consisting of reference chemical shift patterns (reference CSPs) was generated from assigned chemical shifts of proteins with known 3D-structure. This reference CSP database is used in our approach for extracting distributions of amino acid types with their most likely secondary structure elements (namely alpha-helix, beta-sheet, and coil) for single amino acids by comparison with query CSPs. Results obtained for the 10 investigated proteins indicates that the percentage of correct amino acid species in the first three positions in the ranking list, ranges from 71.4% to 93.2% for the more favorable penalty function. Where only the top result of the ranking list for these 10 proteins is considered, 36.5% to 83.1% of the amino acid species are correctly predicted. The main advantage of our approach, over other methods that rely on average chemical shift values is the ability to increase database content by incorporating newly derived CSPs, and therefore to improve PLATON's performance over time.

  9. Chemical shift prediction for protein structure calculation and quality assessment using an optimally parameterized force field.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Jakob T; Eghbalnia, Hamid R; Nielsen, Niels Chr

    2012-01-01

    The exquisite sensitivity of chemical shifts as reporters of structural information, and the ability to measure them routinely and accurately, gives great import to formulations that elucidate the structure-chemical-shift relationship. Here we present a new and highly accurate, precise, and robust formulation for the prediction of NMR chemical shifts from protein structures. Our approach, shAIC (shift prediction guided by Akaikes Information Criterion), capitalizes on mathematical ideas and an information-theoretic principle, to represent the functional form of the relationship between structure and chemical shift as a parsimonious sum of smooth analytical potentials which optimally takes into account short-, medium-, and long-range parameters in a nuclei-specific manner to capture potential chemical shift perturbations caused by distant nuclei. shAIC outperforms the state-of-the-art methods that use analytical formulations. Moreover, for structures derived by NMR or structures with novel folds, shAIC delivers better overall results; even when it is compared to sophisticated machine learning approaches. shAIC provides for a computationally lightweight implementation that is unimpeded by molecular size, making it an ideal for use as a force field.

  10. Utilization of animal studies to determine the effects and human risks of environmental toxicants (drugs, chemicals, and physical agents).

    PubMed

    Brent, Robert L

    2004-04-01

    deficiency is compounded by the fact that there are very few toxicology studies performed in children. That is why pregnant women and children are referred to as "therapeutic orphans." When animal studies are performed with newborn and developing animals, the results demonstrate that generalizations are less applicable and less predictable than the toxicology studies in pregnant animals. Although many studies reveal that the infant and the developing animal have difficulty in metabolizing drugs and are more vulnerable to the toxic effects of environmental chemicals, there are exceptions that indicate that infant and developing animals may be less vulnerable and more resilient to some drugs and chemicals. In other words, the generalization indicating that developing animals are always more sensitive to environmental toxicants is not valid. For animal toxicology studies to be useful, animal studies have to use modern concepts of pharmacokinetics and toxicokinetics, as well as method-of-action studies to determine whether animal data can be used for determining human risk. One example is the inability to determine carcinogenic risks in humans for some drugs and chemicals that produce tumors in rodents, because the oncogenesis is the result of peroxisome proliferation, a reaction that is of diminished importance in humans. Scientists can use animal studies to study the toxicokinetic and toxicodynamic aspects of environmental toxicants, but they have to be performed with the most modern techniques and interpreted with the highest level of scholarship and objectivity. Threshold exposures, maximum permissible exposures, and toxic effects can be estimated but have to be interpreted with caution when applying them to the human. Well-performed epidemiology studies are still the best method for determining the human risk and the effects of environmental toxicants.

  11. Effect-based tools for monitoring and predicting the ecotoxicological effects of chemicals in the aquatic environment.

    PubMed

    Connon, Richard E; Geist, Juergen; Werner, Inge

    2012-01-01

    Ecotoxicology faces the challenge of assessing and predicting the effects of an increasing number of chemical stressors on aquatic species and ecosystems. Herein we review currently applied tools in ecological risk assessment, combining information on exposure with expected biological effects or environmental water quality standards; currently applied effect-based tools are presented based on whether exposure occurs in a controlled laboratory environment or in the field. With increasing ecological relevance the reproducibility, specificity and thus suitability for standardisation of methods tends to diminish. We discuss the use of biomarkers in ecotoxicology including ecotoxicogenomics-based endpoints, which are becoming increasingly important for the detection of sublethal effects. Carefully selected sets of biomarkers allow an assessment of exposure to and effects of toxic chemicals, as well as the health status of organisms and, when combined with chemical analysis, identification of toxicant(s). The promising concept of "adverse outcome pathways (AOP)" links mechanistic responses on the cellular level with whole organism, population, community and potentially ecosystem effects and services. For most toxic mechanisms, however, practical application of AOPs will require more information and the identification of key links between responses, as well as key indicators, at different levels of biological organization, ecosystem functioning and ecosystem services.

  12. Effect-Based Tools for Monitoring and Predicting the Ecotoxicological Effects of Chemicals in the Aquatic Environment

    PubMed Central

    Connon, Richard E.; Geist, Juergen; Werner, Inge

    2012-01-01

    Ecotoxicology faces the challenge of assessing and predicting the effects of an increasing number of chemical stressors on aquatic species and ecosystems. Herein we review currently applied tools in ecological risk assessment, combining information on exposure with expected biological effects or environmental water quality standards; currently applied effect-based tools are presented based on whether exposure occurs in a controlled laboratory environment or in the field. With increasing ecological relevance the reproducibility, specificity and thus suitability for standardisation of methods tends to diminish. We discuss the use of biomarkers in ecotoxicology including ecotoxicogenomics-based endpoints, which are becoming increasingly important for the detection of sublethal effects. Carefully selected sets of biomarkers allow an assessment of exposure to and effects of toxic chemicals, as well as the health status of organisms and, when combined with chemical analysis, identification of toxicant(s). The promising concept of “adverse outcome pathways (AOP)” links mechanistic responses on the cellular level with whole organism, population, community and potentially ecosystem effects and services. For most toxic mechanisms, however, practical application of AOPs will require more information and the identification of key links between responses, as well as key indicators, at different levels of biological organization, ecosystem functioning and ecosystem services. PMID:23112741

  13. Oral LD50 toxicity modeling and prediction of per- and polyfluorinated chemicals on rat and mouse.

    PubMed

    Bhhatarai, Barun; Gramatica, Paola

    2011-05-01

    Quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) analyses were performed using the LD(50) oral toxicity data of per- and polyfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) on rodents: rat and mouse. PFCs are studied under the EU project CADASTER which uses the available experimental data for prediction and prioritization of toxic chemicals for risk assessment by using the in silico tools. The methodology presented here applies chemometrical analysis on the existing experimental data and predicts the toxicity of new compounds. QSAR analyses were performed on the available 58 mouse and 50 rat LD(50) oral data using multiple linear regression (MLR) based on theoretical molecular descriptors selected by genetic algorithm (GA). Training and prediction sets were prepared a priori from available experimental datasets in terms of structure and response. These sets were used to derive statistically robust and predictive (both internally and externally) models. The structural applicability domain (AD) of the models were verified on 376 per- and polyfluorinated chemicals including those in REACH preregistration list. The rat and mouse endpoints were predicted by each model for the studied compounds, and finally 30 compounds, all perfluorinated, were prioritized as most important for experimental toxicity analysis under the project. In addition, cumulative study on compounds within the AD of all four models, including two earlier published models on LC(50) rodent analysis was studied and the cumulative toxicity trend was observed using principal component analysis (PCA). The similarities and the differences observed in terms of descriptors and chemical/mechanistic meaning encoded by descriptors to prioritize the most toxic compounds are highlighted.

  14. The fetal ovary exhibits temporal sensitivity to a ‘real-life’ mixture of environmental chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Lea, Richard G.; Amezaga, Maria R.; Loup, Benoit; Mandon-Pépin, Béatrice; Stefansdottir, Agnes; Filis, Panagiotis; Kyle, Carol; Zhang, Zulin; Allen, Ceri; Purdie, Laura; Jouneau, Luc; Cotinot, Corinne; Rhind, Stewart M.; Sinclair, Kevin D.; Fowler, Paul A.

    2016-01-01

    The development of fetal ovarian follicles is a critical determinant of adult female reproductive competence. Prolonged exposure to environmental chemicals (ECs) can perturb this process with detrimental consequences for offspring. Here we report on the exposure of pregnant ewes to an environmental mixture of ECs derived from pastures fertilized with sewage sludge (biosolids): a common global agricultural practice. Exposure of pregnant ewes to ECs over 80 day periods during early, mid or late gestation reduced the proportion of healthy early stage fetal follicles comprising the ovarian reserve. Mid and late gestation EC exposures had the most marked effects, disturbing maternal and fetal liver chemical profiles, masculinising fetal anogenital distance and greatly increasing the number of altered fetal ovarian genes and proteins. In conclusion, differential temporal sensitivity of the fetus and its ovaries to EC mixtures has implications for adult ovarian function following adverse exposures during pregnancy. PMID:26931299

  15. Oxidative metabolism of chemical pollutants in marine organisms: molecular and biochemical biomarkers in environmental toxicology.

    PubMed

    Benedetti, Maura; Giuliani, Maria Elisa; Regoli, Francesco

    2015-03-01

    Oxidative stress biomarkers are widely used in marine ecotoxicology. Environmental pollutants enhance intracellular formation of oxyradicals through several mechanisms, but complex oxidative interactions occur in response to chemical mixtures. Metabolism of individual classes of pollutants can be influenced by a sophisticated network of prooxidant relationships, reciprocal and cascade effects, changes of redox-sensitive signaling proteins, and transcription factors. Chemically mediated pathways can affect antioxidant responses at different levels, including pretranscriptional, transcriptional, protein, and catalytic functions; such mechanisms remain largely unexplored in marine organisms. Molecular responses of antioxidants are frequently not paralleled by expected biochemical changes or cellular effects, and caution is needed when interpreting the effects of environmental pollutants. Results on antioxidant variations can be influenced by mRNA stability and protein turnover, different timing for transcriptional and translational mechanisms, metabolic capability of tissues, posttranscriptional modifications of proteins, biphasic responses of antioxidant enzymes, and adaptation mechanisms to chronic pollution.

  16. The Vapor Pressure of Environmentally Significant Organic Chemicals: A Review of Methods and Data at Ambient Temperature

    SciTech Connect

    Delle Site, A.

    1997-01-01

    The experimental techniques and the prediction procedures for the determination or evaluation of the vapor pressure of environmentally relevant organic compounds are described; with 259 references examined. For each of them the characteristics of precision and accuracy are given, when available from the literature. The experimental methods are classified as {open_quotes}direct{close_quotes} and {open_quotes}indirect.{close_quotes} The first class includes all those which can measure directly the vapor pressure, while the second concerns those which need {open_quotes}known{close_quotes} vapor pressures of reference compounds for the calibration. Prediction methods are based on the application of the Clapeyron{endash}Clausius equation or on the quantitative structure-property relationships. Also correlation methods require a suitable calibration. The vapor pressures at ambient temperature for several polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, polychlorinated biphenyls, polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and furans, selected pesticides, and some reference compounds are tabulated together with the vapor pressure equations and the enthalpy values in the temperature range of measurement. A critical comparison, based on a statistical analysis of the data obtained with different methods and derived from 152 references, is also carried out. {copyright} {ital 1996 American Institute of Physics and American Chemical Society.}{ital Key words:} chlorinated biphenyls; chlorinated dioxins; critically reviewed data; critically reviewed methods; pesticides; polynuclear aromatics; vapor pressure. {copyright} {ital 1996} {ital American Institute of Physics and American Chemical Society}

  17. Development of a predictive program for Vibrio parahaemolyticus growth under various environmental conditions.

    PubMed

    Fujikawa, Hiroshi; Kimura, Bon; Fujii, Tateo

    2009-09-01

    In this study, we developed a predictive program for Vibrio parahaemolyticus growth under various environmental conditions. Raw growth data was obtained with a V. parahaemolyticus O3:K6 strain cultured at a variety of broth temperatures, pH, and salt concentrations. Data were analyzed with our logistic model and the parameter values of the model were analyzed with polynomial equations. A prediction program consisting of the growth model and the polynomial equations was then developed. After the range of the growth environments was modified, the program successfully predicted the growth for all environments tested. The program could be a useful tool to ensure the bacteriological safety of seafood.

  18. Chemical and microbiological experimentation for development of environmental control and life support systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whitman, G. A.; Wilson, M. E.; Cole, H. E.; Traweek, M.

    1992-01-01

    Microbiological techniques are under study with a view to the identification of viable microorganisms in liquid cultures, improve the identification of stressed organisms, and determine the biocidal activity of iodine and other chemicals on isolates from recycled water. A quality-assurance program has been implemented to validate data employed in making decisions concerning engineering and human health and safety. Analytical laboratory refinements will strongly aid the development of environmental control and life-support systems.

  19. In vitro perturbations of targets in cancer hallmark processes predict rodent chemical carcinogenesis.

    PubMed

    Kleinstreuer, Nicole C; Dix, David J; Houck, Keith A; Kavlock, Robert J; Knudsen, Thomas B; Martin, Matthew T; Paul, Katie B; Reif, David M; Crofton, Kevin M; Hamilton, Kerry; Hunter, Ronald; Shah, Imran; Judson, Richard S

    2013-01-01

    Thousands of untested chemicals in the environment require efficient characterization of carcinogenic potential in humans. A proposed solution is rapid testing of chemicals using in vitro high-throughput screening (HTS) assays for targets in pathways linked to disease processes to build models for priority setting and further testing. We describe a model for predicting rodent carcinogenicity based on HTS data from 292 chemicals tested in 672 assays mapping to 455 genes. All data come from the EPA ToxCast project. The model was trained on a subset of 232 chemicals with in vivo rodent carcinogenicity data in the Toxicity Reference Database (ToxRefDB). Individual HTS assays strongly associated with rodent cancers in ToxRefDB were linked to genes, pathways, and hallmark processes documented to be involved in tumor biology and cancer progression. Rodent liver cancer endpoints were linked to well-documented pathways such as peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor signaling and TP53 and novel targets such as PDE5A and PLAUR. Cancer hallmark genes associated with rodent thyroid tumors were found to be linked to human thyroid tumors and autoimmune thyroid disease. A model was developed in which these genes/pathways function as hypothetical enhancers or promoters of rat thyroid tumors, acting secondary to the key initiating event of thyroid hormone disruption. A simple scoring function was generated to identify chemicals with significant in vitro evidence that was predictive of in vivo carcinogenicity in different rat tissues and organs. This scoring function was applied to an external test set of 33 compounds with carcinogenicity classifications from the EPA's Office of Pesticide Programs and successfully (p = 0.024) differentiated between chemicals classified as "possible"/"probable"/"likely" carcinogens and those designated as "not likely" or with "evidence of noncarcinogenicity." This model represents a chemical carcinogenicity prioritization tool supporting targeted

  20. Predicting Formation Damage in Aquifer Thermal Energy Storage Systems Utilizing a Coupled Hydraulic-Thermal-Chemical Reservoir Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, Daniel; Regenspurg, Simona; Milsch, Harald; Blöcher, Guido; Kranz, Stefan; Saadat, Ali

    2014-05-01

    In aquifer thermal energy storage (ATES) systems, large amounts of energy can be stored by injecting hot water into deep or intermediate aquifers. In a seasonal production-injection cycle, water is circulated through a system comprising the porous aquifer, a production well, a heat exchanger and an injection well. This process involves large temperature and pressure differences, which shift chemical equilibria and introduce or amplify mechanical processes. Rock-fluid interaction such as dissolution and precipitation or migration and deposition of fine particles will affect the hydraulic properties of the porous medium and may lead to irreversible formation damage. In consequence, these processes determine the long-term performance of the ATES system and need to be predicted to ensure the reliability of the system. However, high temperature and pressure gradients and dynamic feedback cycles pose challenges on predicting the influence of the relevant processes. Within this study, a reservoir model comprising a coupled hydraulic-thermal-chemical simulation was developed based on an ATES demonstration project located in the city of Berlin, Germany. The structural model was created with Petrel, based on data available from seismic cross-sections and wellbores. The reservoir simulation was realized by combining the capabilities of multiple simulation tools. For the reactive transport model, COMSOL Multiphysics (hydraulic-thermal) and PHREEQC (chemical) were combined using the novel interface COMSOL_PHREEQC, developed by Wissmeier & Barry (2011). It provides a MATLAB-based coupling interface between both programs. Compared to using COMSOL's built-in reactive transport simulator, PHREEQC additionally calculates adsorption and reaction kinetics and allows the selection of different activity coefficient models in the database. The presented simulation tool will be able to predict the most important aspects of hydraulic, thermal and chemical transport processes relevant to

  1. [Predictive models for the assessment of occupational exposure to chemicals: a new challenge for employers].

    PubMed

    Gromiec, Jan Piotr; Kupczewska-Dobecka, Małgorzata; Jankowska, Agnieszka; Czerczak, Sławomir

    2013-01-01

    Employers are obliged to carry out and document the risk associated with the use of chemical substances. The best but the most expensive method is to measure workplace concentrations of chemicals. At present no "measureless" method for risk assessment is available in Poland, but predictive models for such assessments have been developed in some countries. The purpose of this work is to review and evaluate the applicability of selected predictive methods for assessing occupational inhalation exposure and related risk to check the compliance with Occupational Exposure Limits (OELs), as well as the compliance with REACH obligations. Based on the literature data HSE COSHH Essentials, EASE, ECETOC TRA, Stoffenmanager, and EMKG-Expo-Tool were evaluated. The data on validation of predictive models were also examined. It seems that predictive models may be used as a useful method for Tier 1 assessment of occupational exposure by inhalation. Since the levels of exposure are frequently overestimated, they should be considered as "rational worst cases" for selection of proper control measures. Bearing in mind that the number of available exposure scenarios and PROC categories is limited, further validation by field surveys is highly recommended. Predictive models may serve as a good tool for preliminary risk assessment and selection of the most appropriate risk control measures in Polish small and medium size enterprises (SMEs) providing that they are available in the Polish language. This also requires an extensive training of their future users.

  2. A variety of environmentally persistent chemicals, including some phthalate plasticizers, are weakly estrogenic.

    PubMed Central

    Jobling, S; Reynolds, T; White, R; Parker, M G; Sumpter, J P

    1995-01-01

    Sewage, a complex mixture of organic and inorganic chemicals, is considered to be a major source of environmental pollution. A random screen of 20 organic man-made chemicals present in liquid effluents revealed that half appeared able to interact with the estradiol receptor. This was demonstrated by their ability to inhibit binding of 17 beta-estradiol to the fish estrogen receptor. Further studies, using mammalian estrogen screens in vitro, revealed that the two phthalate esters butylbenzyl phthalate (BBP) and di-n-butylphthalate (DBP) and a food antioxidant, butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) were estrogenic; however, they were all less estrogenic than the environmental estrogen octylphenol. Phthalate esters, used in the production of various plastics (including PVC), are among the most common industrial chemicals. Their ubiquity in the environment and tendency to bioconcentrate in animal fat are well known. Neither BBP nor DBP were able to act as antagonists, indicating that, in the presence of endogenous estrogens, their overall effect would be cumulative. Recently, it has been suggested that environmental estrogens may be etiological agents in several human diseases, including disorders of the male reproductive tract and breast and testicular cancers. The current finding that some phthalate compounds and some food additives are weakly estrogenic in vitro, needs to be supported by further studies on their effects in vivo before any conclusions can be made regarding their possible role in the development of these conditions. Images Figure 1. Figure 2. Figure 3. Figure 4. PMID:7556011

  3. Studying the time scale dependence of environmental variables predictability using fractal analysis.

    PubMed

    Yuval; Broday, David M

    2010-06-15

    Prediction of meteorological and air quality variables motivates a lot of research in the atmospheric sciences and exposure assessment communities. An interesting related issue regards the relative predictive power that can be expected at different time scales, and whether it vanishes altogether at certain ranges. An improved understanding of our predictive powers enables better environmental management and more efficient decision making processes. Fractal analysis is commonly used to characterize the self-affinity of time series. This work introduces the Continuous Wavelet Transform (CWT) fractal analysis method as a tool for assessing environmental time series predictability. The high temporal scale resolution of the CWT enables detailed information about the Hurst parameter, a common temporal fractality measure, and thus about time scale variations in predictability. We analyzed a few years records of half-hourly air pollution and meteorological time series from which the trivial seasonal and daily cycles were removed. We encountered a general trend of decreasing Hurst values from about 1.4 (good autocorrelation and predictability), in the sub-daily time scale to 0.5 (which implies complete randomness) in the monthly to seasonal scales. The air pollutants predictability follows that of the meteorological variables in the short time scales but is better at longer scales.

  4. A thermodynamic approach for assessing the environmental exposure of chemicals absorbed to microplastic.

    PubMed

    Gouin, Todd; Roche, Nicola; Lohmann, Rainer; Hodges, Geoff

    2011-02-15

    The environmental distribution and fate of microplastic in the marine environment represents a potential cause of concern. One aspect is the influence that microplastic may have on enhancing the transport and bioavailability of persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic substances (PBT). In this study we assess these potential risks using a thermodynamic approach, aiming to prioritize the physicochemical properties of chemicals that are most likely absorbed by microplastic and therefore ingested by biota. Using a multimedia modeling approach, we define a chemical space aimed at improving our understanding of how chemicals partition in the marine environment with varying volume ratios of air/water/organic carbon/polyethylene, where polyethylene represents a main group of microplastic. Results suggest that chemicals with log KOW > 5 have the potential to partition >1% to polyethylene. Food-web model results suggest that reductions in body burden concentrations for nonpolar organic chemicals are likely to occur for chemicals with log KOW between 5.5 and 6.5. Thus the relative importance of microplastic as a vector of PBT substances to biological organisms is likely of limited importance, relative to other exposure pathways. Nevertheless, a number of data-gaps are identified, largely associated with improving our understanding of the physical fate of microplastic in the environment.

  5. Semen parameters can be predicted from environmental factors and lifestyle using artificial intelligence methods.

    PubMed

    Girela, Jose L; Gil, David; Johnsson, Magnus; Gomez-Torres, María José; De Juan, Joaquín

    2013-04-01

    Fertility rates have dramatically decreased in the last two decades, especially in men. It has been described that environmental factors as well as life habits may affect semen quality. In this paper we use artificial intelligence techniques in order to predict semen characteristics resulting from environmental factors, life habits, and health status, with these techniques constituting a possible decision support system that can help in the study of male fertility potential. A total of 123 young, healthy volunteers provided a semen sample that was analyzed according to the World Health Organization 2010 criteria. They also were asked to complete a validated questionnaire about life habits and health status. Sperm concentration and percentage of motile sperm were related to sociodemographic data, environmental factors, health status, and life habits in order to determine the predictive accuracy of a multilayer perceptron network, a type of artificial neural network. In conclusion, we have developed an artificial neural network that can predict the results of the semen analysis based on the data collected by the questionnaire. The semen parameter that is best predicted using this methodology is the sperm concentration. Although the accuracy for motility is slightly lower than that for concentration, it is possible to predict it with a significant degree of accuracy. This methodology can be a useful tool in early diagnosis of patients with seminal disorders or in the selection of candidates to become semen donors.

  6. Mixtures of environmentally relevant endocrine disrupting chemicals affect mammary gland development in female and male rats.

    PubMed

    Mandrup, Karen Riiber; Johansson, Hanna Katarina Lilith; Boberg, Julie; Pedersen, Anne Stilling; Mortensen, Mette Sidsel; Jørgensen, Jennifer Solgaard; Vinggaard, Anne Marie; Hass, Ulla

    2015-07-01

    Estrogenic chemicals are able to alter mammary gland development in female rodents, but little is known on the effects of anti-androgens and mixtures of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) with dissimilar modes of action. Pregnant rat dams were exposed during gestation and lactation to mixtures of environmentally relevant EDCs with estrogenic, anti-androgenic or dissimilar modes of action (TotalMix) of 100-, 200- or 450-fold high end human intake estimates. Mammary glands of prepubertal and adult female and male offspring were examined. Oestrogens increased mammary outgrowth in prepubertal females and the mRNA level of matrix metalloproteinase-3, which may be a potential biomarker for increased outgrowth. Mixtures of EDCs gave rise to ductal hyperplasia in adult males. Adult female mammary glands of the TotalMix group showed morphological changes possibly reflecting increased prolactin levels. In conclusion both estrogenic and anti-androgenic chemicals given during foetal life and lactation affected mammary glands in the offspring.

  7. Impacts of Environmental Nanoparticles on Chemical, Biological and Hydrological Processes in Terrestrial Ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Qafoku, Nikolla

    2012-01-01

    This chapter provides insights on nanoparticle (NP) influence or control on the extent and timescales of single or coupled physical, chemical, biological and hydrological reactions and processes that occur in terrestrial ecosystems. Examples taken from the literature that show how terrestrial NPs may determine the fate of the aqueous and sorbed (adsorbed or precipitated) chemical species of nutrients and contaminants, are also included in this chapter. Specifically, in the first section, chapter objectives, term definitions and discussions on size-dependent properties, the origin and occurrence of NP in terrestrial ecosystems and NP toxicity, are included. In the second section, the topic of the binary interactions of NPs of different sizes, shapes, concentrations and ages with the soil solution chemical species is covered, focusing on NP formation, stability, aggregation, ability to serve as sorbents, or surface-mediated precipitation catalysts, or electron donors and acceptors. In the third section, aspects of the interactions in the ternary systems composed of environmental NP, nutrient/contaminant chemical species, and the soil/sediment matrix are discussed, focusing on the inhibitory and catalytic effects of environmental NP on nutrient/contaminant advective mobility and mass transfer, adsorption and desorption, dissolution and precipitation and redox reactions that occur in terrestrial ecosystems. These three review sections are followed by a short summary of future research needs and directions, the acknowledgements, the list of the references, and the figures.

  8. Computational reverse chemical ecology: Virtual screening and predicting behaviorally active semiochemicals for Bactrocera dorsalis

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Semiochemical is a generic term used for a chemical substance that influences the behaviour of an organism. It is a common term used in the field of chemical ecology to encompass pheromones, allomones, kairomones, attractants and repellents. Insects have mastered the art of using semiochemicals as communication signals and rely on them to find mates, host or habitat. This dependency of insects on semiochemicals has allowed chemical ecologists to develop environment friendly pest management strategies. However, discovering semiochemicals is a laborious process that involves a plethora of behavioural and analytical techniques, making it expansively time consuming. Recently, reverse chemical ecology approach using odorant binding proteins (OBPs) as target for elucidating behaviourally active compounds is gaining eminence. In this scenario, we describe a “computational reverse chemical ecology” approach for rapid screening of potential semiochemicals. Results We illustrate the high prediction accuracy of our computational method. We screened 25 semiochemicals for their binding potential to a GOBP of B. dorsalis using molecular docking (in silico) and molecular dynamics. Parallely, compounds were subjected to fluorescent quenching assays (Experimental). The correlation between in silico and experimental data were significant (r2 = 0.9408; P < 0.0001). Further, predicted compounds were subjected to behavioral bioassays and were found to be highly attractive to insects. Conclusions The present study provides a unique methodology for rapid screening and predicting behaviorally active semiochemicals. This methodology may be developed as a viable approach for prospecting active semiochemicals for pest control, which otherwise is a laborious process. PMID:24640964

  9. Quantum chemical predictions of the vibrational spectra of polyatomic molecules. The uracil molecule and two derivatives.

    PubMed

    Palafox, Mauricio Alcolea; Rastogi, V K

    2002-02-01

    This work describes the different scaling procedures used to correct the quantum-chemical theoretical predictions of the IR and Raman vibrational wavenumbers. Examples of each case are shown, with special attention to the uracil molecule and some derivatives. The results obtained with different semiempirical and ab initio methods, and basis sets, are compared and discussed. A comprehensive compendium of the main scale factors and scaling equations available to obtain the scaled wavenumbers is also shown.

  10. [Kinetics of chemical reactions for quality prediction of canned fish during storage].

    PubMed

    Lukoshkina, M V; Odoeva, G A

    2003-01-01

    Changes in a wide range of quality characteristics of canned fish were studied during storage at different temperatures. A number of biochemical parameters were found, which undergo significant monotonic changes in the course of storage, correlating with organoleptic scores. It was demonstrated that simulation of thermal aging of canned fish, based on the laws of chemical kinetics, may be used for predicting quality changes and determining the shelf life.

  11. Computer prediction of possible toxic action from chemical structure; the DEREK system.

    PubMed

    Sanderson, D M; Earnshaw, C G

    1991-07-01

    1. The development of DEREK, a computer-based expert system (derived from the LHASA chemical synthesis design program) for the qualitative prediction of possible toxic action of compounds on the basis of their chemical structure is described. 2. The system is able to perceive chemical sub-structures within molecules and relate these to a rulebase linking the sub-structures with likely types of toxicity. 3. Structures can be drawn in directly at a computer graphics terminal or retrieved automatically from a suitable in-house database. 4. The system is intended to aid the selection of compounds based on toxicological considerations, or separately to indicate specific toxicological properties to be tested for early in the evaluation of a compound, so saving time, money and some laboratory animals and resources.

  12. Prediction of Toxic Pollution Resulting From Warfare Chemical Munitions Dumped In The Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korotenko, K. A.

    A 3-D high-resolution Hydrodynamic/Transport model was developed to predict chemical pollution in marine environment with a special reference to warfare chem- icals dumped in the Baltic Sea. The Flow module was developed on the basis of the Princeton Ocean Model (POM). The grid step is chosen at 1/15Deg and 1/30/Deg along x- and y-axes (that is, about 4.0 km and 3.7 km, respectively). The model grid covers the Baltic from 9.3 to 24.6E and from 53.0 to 60.2N. The Transport module of the model takes the predetermined velocity field and uses the random walk technique to predict the motion of individual particles, the sum of which constitutes a consid- ered chemical agent. Several different approaches for modeling are used for different kind of chemical agents. Basic processes affecting the chemicals to be modeled are hydrolysis, solubility, and microbiological destruction. All available toxicity data re- garding the chemical warfare agents of primary concern and the expected degradation products in the Baltic environment were gathered and summarized. This information was used to compare the toxicities of the different agents and their degradation prod- ucts and to decide which chemicals may represent a toxic threat to the environment. The model was adapted to be used for chemical agents with various characteristics and behavior (as Sarin, Lewsite, Musturd, etc.) in seawaters. Special algorithms are developed to describe nonlinear reactions producing toxic and nontoxic products in result of the warfare agent destruction. Sources of chemical pollution in the sea are considered as steady state (chronic) point and/or distributed releases because princi- pally different two methods were used in dumping CW: 1) concentrated dumping of containers, shells, and bombs together with ships; 2) dispersed dumping of individual containers, shells and aircraft bombs from moving vessels. The model was run with four most recurrent climatic wind fields for the Bornholm and Gotland

  13. Nanomaterials for environmental studies: classification, reference material issues, and strategies for physico-chemical characterisation.

    PubMed

    Stone, Vicki; Nowack, Bernd; Baun, Anders; van den Brink, Nico; Kammer, Frank von der; Dusinska, Maria; Handy, Richard; Hankin, Steven; Hassellöv, Martin; Joner, Erik; Fernandes, Teresa F

    2010-03-01

    NanoImpactNet is a European Commission Framework Programme 7 (FP7) funded project that provides a forum for the discussion of current opinions on nanomaterials in relation to human and environmental issues. In September 2008, in Zurich, a NanoImpactNet environmental workshop focused on three key questions: 1. What properties should be characterised for nanomaterials used in environmental and ecotoxicology studies? 2. What reference materials should be developed for use in environmental and ecotoxicological studies? 3. Is it possible to group different nanomaterials into categories for consideration in environmental studies? Such questions have been, at least partially, addressed by other projects/workshops especially in relation to human health effects. Such projects provide a useful basis on which this workshop was based, but in this particular case these questions were reformulated in order to focus specifically on environmental studies. The workshop participants, through a series of discussion and reflection sessions, generated the conclusions listed below. The physicochemical characterisation information identified as important for environmental studies included measures of aggregation/agglomeration/dispersability, size, dissolution (solubility), surface area, surface charge, surface chemistry/composition, with the assumption that chemical composition would already be known. There is a need to have test materials for ecotoxicology, and several substances are potentially useful, including TiO(2) nanoparticles, polystyrene beads labelled with fluorescent dyes, and silver nanoparticles. Some of these test materials could then be developed into certified reference materials over time. No clear consensus was reached regarding the classification of nanomaterials into categories to aid environmental studies, except that a chemistry-based classification system was a reasonable starting point, with some modifications. It was suggested, that additional work may be

  14. Predicting chemical kinetics with computational chemistry: is QOO&(H)rarr;HOQO important in fuel ignition?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Green, William H.; Wijaya, Catherina D.; Yelvington, Paul E.; Sumathi, R.

    An overview of predictive chemical kinetics is presented, with an application to the simulation and design of homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) engines. The engine simulations are sensitive to the details of hydroperoxyalkyl (QOOH) radical chemistry, which are only partially understood, and there is a significant discrepancy between the simulations and experiment that limits the usefulness of the simulations. One possible explanation is that QOOH decomposes by other channels not considered in existing combustion chemistry models. Rate constants for one of these neglected channels, the intramolecular radical attack on the QOOH peroxide linkage to form hydroxyalkoxyl (HOQO) radicals, are predicted using quantum chemistry (CBS-QB3), to test whether or not this proposed channel can explain the observed discrepancies in the engine simulations. Although this channel has a significant rate, the competing attack on the other O atom in the peroxide to form a cyclic ether+OH is computed to be an order of magnitude faster, so the HOQO channel does not appear to be fast enough to explain the discrepancy. Definitive judgement on the importance of this reaction channel will require a careful reconsideration of all the coupled chemically activated QOOH reaction channels using modern predictive chemical kinetics software.

  15. Predicting aquatic toxicities of chemical pesticides in multiple test species using nonlinear QSTR modeling approaches.

    PubMed

    Basant, Nikita; Gupta, Shikha; Singh, Kunwar P

    2015-11-01

    In this study, we established nonlinear quantitative-structure toxicity relationship (QSTR) models for predicting the toxicities of chemical pesticides in multiple aquatic test species following the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) guidelines. The decision tree forest (DTF) and decision tree boost (DTB) based QSTR models were constructed using a pesticides toxicity dataset in Selenastrum capricornutum and a set of six descriptors. Other six toxicity data sets were used for external validation of the constructed QSTRs. Global QSTR models were also constructed using the combined dataset of all the seven species. The diversity in chemical structures and nonlinearity in the data were evaluated. Model validation was performed deriving several statistical coefficients for the test data and the prediction and generalization abilities of the QSTRs were evaluated. Both the QSTR models identified WPSA1 (weighted charged partial positive surface area) as the most influential descriptor. The DTF and DTB QSTRs performed relatively better than the single decision tree (SDT) and support vector machines (SVM) models used as a benchmark here and yielded R(2) of 0.886 and 0.964 between the measured and predicted toxicity values in the complete dataset (S. capricornutum). The QSTR models applied to six other aquatic species toxicity data yielded R(2) of >0.92 (DTF) and >0.97 (DTB), respectively. The prediction accuracies of the global models were comparable with those of the S. capricornutum models. The results suggest for the appropriateness of the developed QSTR models to reliably predict the aquatic toxicity of chemicals and can be used for regulatory purpose.

  16. Evaluation of the performance of four chemical transport models in predicting the aerosol chemical composition in Europe in 2005

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prank, Marje; Sofiev, Mikhail; Tsyro, Svetlana; Hendriks, Carlijn; Semeena, Valiyaveetil; Vazhappilly Francis, Xavier; Butler, Tim; Denier van der Gon, Hugo; Friedrich, Rainer; Hendricks, Johannes; Kong, Xin; Lawrence, Mark; Righi, Mattia; Samaras, Zissis; Sausen, Robert; Kukkonen, Jaakko; Sokhi, Ranjeet

    2016-05-01

    Four regional chemistry transport models were applied to simulate the concentration and composition of particulate matter (PM) in Europe for 2005 with horizontal resolution ~ 20 km. The modelled concentrations were compared with the measurements of PM chemical composition by the European Monitoring and Evaluation Programme (EMEP) monitoring network. All models systematically underestimated PM10 and PM2.5 by 10-60 %, depending on the model and the season of the year, when the calculated dry PM mass was compared with the measurements. The average water content at laboratory conditions was estimated between 5 and 20 % for PM2.5 and between 10 and 25 % for PM10. For majority of the PM chemical components, the relative underestimation was smaller than it was for total PM, exceptions being the carbonaceous particles and mineral dust. Some species, such as sea salt and NO3-, were overpredicted by the models. There were notable differences between the models' predictions of the seasonal variations of PM, mainly attributable to different treatments or omission of some source categories and aerosol processes. Benzo(a)pyrene concentrations were overestimated by all the models over the whole year. The study stresses the importance of improving the models' skill in simulating mineral dust and carbonaceous compounds, necessity for high-quality emissions from wildland fires, as well as the need for an explicit consideration of aerosol water content in model-measurement comparison.

  17. Predicting chemically-induced skin reactions. Part I: QSAR models of skin sensitization and their application to identify potentially hazardous compounds

    PubMed Central

    Alves, Vinicius M.; Muratov, Eugene; Fourches, Denis; Strickland, Judy; Kleinstreuer, Nicole; Andrade, Carolina H.; Tropsha, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    Repetitive exposure to a chemical agent can induce an immune reaction in inherently susceptible individuals that leads to skin sensitization. Although many chemicals have been reported as skin sensitizers, there have been very few rigorously validated QSAR models with defined applicability domains (AD) that were developed using a large group of chemically diverse compounds. In this study, we have aimed to compile, curate, and integrate the largest publicly available dataset related to chemically-induced skin sensitization, use this data to generate rigorously validated and QSAR models for skin sensitization, and employ these models as a virtual screening tool for identifying putative sensitizers among environmental chemicals. We followed best practices for model building and validation implemented with our predictive QSAR workflow using random forest modeling technique in combination with SiRMS and Dragon descriptors. The Correct Classification Rate (CCR) for QSAR models discriminating sensitizers from non-sensitizers were 71–88% when evaluated on several external validation sets, within a broad AD, with positive (for sensitizers) and negative (for non-sensitizers) predicted rates of 85% and 79% respectively. When compared to the skin sensitization module included in the OECD QSAR toolbox as well as to the skin sensitization model in publicly available VEGA software, our models showed a significantly higher prediction accuracy for the same sets of external compounds as evaluated by Positive Predicted Rate, Negative Predicted Rate, and CCR. These models were applied to identify putative chemical hazards in the ScoreCard database of possible skin or sense organ toxicants as primary candidates for experimental validation. PMID:25560674

  18. Improving Hurricane Power Outage Prediction Models Through the Inclusion of Local Environmental Factors.

    PubMed

    McRoberts, D Brent; Quiring, Steven M; Guikema, Seth D

    2016-10-25

    Tropical cyclones can significantly damage the electrical power system, so an accurate spatiotemporal forecast of outages prior to landfall can help utilities to optimize the power restoration process. The purpose of this article is to enhance the predictive accuracy of the Spatially Generalized Hurricane Outage Prediction Model (SGHOPM) developed by Guikema et al. (2014). In this version of the SGHOPM, we introduce a new two-step prediction procedure and increase the number of predictor variables. The first model step predicts whether or not outages will occur in each location and the second step predicts the number of outages. The SGHOPM environmental variables of Guikema et al. (2014) were limited to the wind characteristics (speed and duration of strong winds) of the tropical cyclones. This version of the model adds elevation, land cover, soil, precipitation, and vegetation characteristics in each location. Our results demonstrate that the use of a new two-step outage prediction model and the inclusion of these additional environmental variables increase the overall accuracy of the SGHOPM by approximately 17%.

  19. Environmental controls on plant chemical traits: Using the CAO-VSWIR to characterize patterns in a mediterranean-type ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahlin, K.; Asner, G. P.; Field, C. B.

    2012-12-01

    Here we present results from a new imaging spectrometer, the Carnegie Airborne Observatory's (CAO) Visible-Short Wave Infrared (VSWIR) sensor, and we use these data to map key plant functional traits in a semi-arid ecosystem, Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve (Woodside, CA USA). We considered four fundamental plant traits: leaf nitrogen per mass (Nmass, %), leaf carbon per mass (Cmass, %), leaf water fraction (WL), and canopy water fraction (WC).With these maps we ask the following questions: (1) How do these traits vary with environmental gradients and land use history, independent of species composition? (2) Does information about plant community improve our ability to explain trait patterns? And (3) what does the variation within plant communities tell us about the underlying processes driving or limiting this ecosystem? We show that the new CAO-VSWIR combined with partial least squares regression can effectively map these four plant chemical traits across multiple plant functional types (observed v. predicted R2s ranging from 0.55 for WL to 0.84 for Cmass). To consider how these traits varied with environmental gradients we used simultaneous autoregressive modeling and found, in general, that environment and land-use history together explained about a quarter of the variation in each trait, but that information about plant community boundaries dramatically improved our predictive power. While 29 - 44% of the variation in these four traits remained unexplained, when we considered the trait distributions within each plant community we found that most plant communities were sharply peaked (leptokurtic) or near normal, while a few communities were more evenly distributed (platykurtic) for each trait. These results show that, even though environmental gradients play a small but significant role, most of the plant communities at Jasper Ridge are characterized by a narrow range of trait patterns. For the few communities that are highly divergent, possible causal

  20. Prediction of organ toxicity endpoints by QSAR modeling based on precise chemical-histopathology annotations.

    PubMed

    Myshkin, Eugene; Brennan, Richard; Khasanova, Tatiana; Sitnik, Tatiana; Serebriyskaya, Tatiana; Litvinova, Elena; Guryanov, Alexey; Nikolsky, Yuri; Nikolskaya, Tatiana; Bureeva, Svetlana

    2012-09-01

    The ability to accurately predict the toxicity of drug candidates from their chemical structure is critical for guiding experimental drug discovery toward safer medicines. Under the guidance of the MetaTox consortium (Thomson Reuters, CA, USA), which comprised toxicologists from the pharmaceutical industry and government agencies, we created a comprehensive ontology of toxic pathologies for 19 organs, classifying pathology terms by pathology type and functional organ substructure. By manual annotation of full-text research articles, the ontology was populated with chemical compounds causing specific histopathologies. Annotated compound-toxicity associations defined histologically from rat and mouse experiments were used to build quantitative structure-activity relationship models predicting subcategories of liver and kidney toxicity: liver necrosis, liver relative weight gain, liver lipid accumulation, nephron injury, kidney relative weight gain, and kidney necrosis. All models were validated using two independent test sets and demonstrated overall good performance: initial validation showed 0.80-0.96 sensitivity (correctly predicted toxic compounds) and 0.85-1.00 specificity (correctly predicted non-toxic compounds). Later validation against a test set of compounds newly added to the database in the 2 years following initial model generation showed 75-87% sensitivity and 60-78% specificity. General hepatotoxicity and nephrotoxicity models were less accurate, as expected for more complex endpoints.

  1. Predicting hydration free energies with chemical accuracy: the SAMPL4 challenge.

    PubMed

    Sandberg, Lars

    2014-03-01

    An implicit solvent model described by a non-simple dielectric medium is used for the prediction of hydration free energies on the dataset of 47 molecules in the SAMPL4 challenge. The solute is represented by a minimal parameter set model based on a new all atom force-field, named the liquid simulation force-field. The importance of a first solvation shell correction to the hydration free energy prediction is discussed and two different approaches are introduced to address it: either with an empirical correction to a few functional groups (alcohol, ether, ester, amines and aromatic nitrogen), or an ab initio correction based on the formation of a solute/explicit water complex. Both approaches give equally good predictions with an average unsigned error <1 kcal/mol. Chemical accuracy is obtained.

  2. Prediction of Chemical-Protein Interactions Network with Weighted Network-Based Inference Method

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Feixiong; Zhou, Yadi; Li, Weihua; Liu, Guixia; Tang, Yun

    2012-01-01

    Chemical-protein interaction (CPI) is the central topic of target identification and drug discovery. However, large scale determination of CPI is a big challenge for in vitro or in vivo experiments, while in silico prediction shows great advantages due to low cost and high accuracy. On the basis of our previous drug-target interaction prediction via network-based inference (NBI) method, we further developed node- and edge-weighted NBI methods for CPI prediction here. Two comprehensive CPI bipartite networks extracted from ChEMBL database were used to evaluate the methods, one containing 17,111 CPI pairs between 4,741 compounds and 97 G protein-coupled receptors, the other including 13,648 CPI pairs between 2,827 compounds and 206 kinases. The range of the area under receiver operating characteristic curves was 0.73 to 0.83 for the external validation sets, which confirmed the reliability of the prediction. The weak-interaction hypothesis in CPI network was identified by the edge-weighted NBI method. Moreover, to validate the methods, several candidate targets were predicted for five approved drugs, namely imatinib, dasatinib, sertindole, olanzapine and ziprasidone. The molecular hypotheses and experimental evidence for these predictions were further provided. These results confirmed that our methods have potential values in understanding molecular basis of drug polypharmacology and would be helpful for drug repositioning. PMID:22815915

  3. Screening organic chemicals in commerce for emissions in the context of environmental and human exposure.

    PubMed

    Breivik, Knut; Arnot, Jon A; Brown, Trevor N; McLachlan, Michael S; Wania, Frank

    2012-08-01

    Quantitative knowledge of organic chemical release into the environment is essential to understand and predict human exposure as well as to develop rational control strategies for any substances of concern. While significant efforts have been invested to characterize and screen organic chemicals for hazardous properties, relatively less effort has been directed toward estimating emissions and hence also risks. Here, a rapid throughput method to estimate emissions of discrete organic chemicals in commerce has been developed, applied and evaluated to support screening studies aimed at ranking and identifying chemicals of potential concern. The method builds upon information in the European Union Technical Guidance Document and utilizes information on quantities in commerce (production and/or import rates), chemical function (use patterns) and physical-chemical properties to estimate emissions to air, soil and water within the OECD for five stages of the chemical life-cycle. The method is applied to 16,029 discrete substances (identified by CAS numbers) from five national and international high production volume lists. As access to consistent input data remains fragmented or even impossible, particular attention is given to estimating, evaluating and discussing uncertainties in the resulting emission scenarios. The uncertainty for individual substances typically spans 3 to 4 orders of magnitude for this initial tier screening method. Information on uncertainties in emissions is useful as any screening or categorization methods which solely rely on threshold values are at risk of leading to a significant number of either false positives or false negatives. A limited evaluation of the screening method's estimates for a sub-set of about 100 substances, compared against independent and more detailed emission scenarios presented in various European Risk Assessment Reports, highlights that up-to-date and accurate information on quantities in commerce as well as a detailed

  4. Current approaches toward chemical mixture studies at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the U.S. National Toxicology Program.

    PubMed

    Bucher, J R; Lucier, G

    1998-12-01

    The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) has several new initiatives involving chemical mixtures and has recognized the need to develop new experimental approaches to enhance our efforts in this area. Responding to recent increases in nominations of complex occupational exposures for toxicologic assessment by the U.S. National Toxicology Program, the NIEHS and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health have begun a program to characterize exposures through field studies, identify biomarkers of exposure in workers, and recreate relevant mixed exposures in a laboratory setting. A second initiative with the National Center for Environmental Health/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will examine blood samples from the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey population surveys for selected endocrine-disrupting agents and for common patterns of persistent xenobiotics, providing critical information for the design of animal studies to assess risks of relevant chemical mixtures to humans. New toxicology testing methods (lower cost, faster) will enhance our ability to study chemical mixtures (e.g., dioxin and dioxinlike chemicals, combination AIDS therapies). Ongoing method development efforts involve in vitro functional toxicology assays, screens for estrogenic activity, and carcinogenesis studies in transgenic mice. A major scientific initiative with mixtures involves studies of individual and mixtures of dioxin and dioxinlike chemicals to determine if toxic equivalence factors predict carcinogenic potency in traditional and transgenic bioassays. Complementing these studies is an increased emphasis on physiologically based pharmacokinetic modeling, an activity central to the proper interpretation of chemical mixture studies.

  5. Predicting coral bleaching in response to environmental stressors using 8 years of global-scale data.

    PubMed

    Yee, Susan Harrell; Barron, Mace G

    2010-02-01

    Coral reefs have experienced extensive mortality over the past few decades as a result of temperature-induced mass bleaching events. There is an increasing realization that other environmental factors, including water mixing, solar radiation, water depth, and water clarity, interact with temperature to either exacerbate bleaching or protect coral from mass bleaching. The relative contribution of these factors to variability in mass bleaching at a global scale has not been quantified, but can provide insights when making large-scale predictions of mass bleaching events. Using data from 708 bleaching surveys across the globe, a framework was developed to predict the probability of moderate or severe bleaching as a function of key environmental variables derived from global-scale remote-sensing data. The ability of models to explain spatial and temporal variability in mass bleaching events was quantified. Results indicated approximately 20% improved accuracy of predictions of bleaching when solar radiation and water mixing, in addition to elevated temperature, were incorporated into models, but predictive accuracy was variable among regions. Results provide insights into the effects of environmental parameters on bleaching at a global scale.

  6. Prediction of Low Community Sanitation Coverage Using Environmental and Sociodemographic Factors in Amhara Region, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Oswald, William E; Stewart, Aisha E P; Flanders, W Dana; Kramer, Michael R; Endeshaw, Tekola; Zerihun, Mulat; Melaku, Birhanu; Sata, Eshetu; Gessesse, Demelash; Teferi, Tesfaye; Tadesse, Zerihun; Guadie, Birhan; King, Jonathan D; Emerson, Paul M; Callahan, Elizabeth K; Moe, Christine L; Clasen, Thomas F

    2016-09-07

    This study developed and validated a model for predicting the probability that communities in Amhara Region, Ethiopia, have low sanitation coverage, based on environmental and sociodemographic conditions. Community sanitation coverage was measured between 2011 and 2014 through trachoma control program evaluation surveys. Information on environmental and sociodemographic conditions was obtained from available data sources and linked with community data using a geographic information system. Logistic regression was used to identify predictors of low community sanitation coverage (< 20% versus ≥ 20%). The selected model was geographically and temporally validated. Model-predicted probabilities of low community sanitation coverage were mapped. Among 1,502 communities, 344 (22.90%) had coverage below 20%. The selected model included measures for high topsoil gravel content, an indicator for low-lying land, population density, altitude, and rainfall and had reasonable predictive discrimination (area under the curve = 0.75, 95% confidence interval = 0.72, 0.78). Measures of soil stability were strongly associated with low community sanitation coverage, controlling for community wealth, and other factors. A model using available environmental and sociodemographic data predicted low community sanitation coverage for areas across Amhara Region with fair discrimination. This approach could assist sanitation programs and trachoma control programs, scaling up or in hyperendemic areas, to target vulnerable areas with additional activities or alternate technologies.

  7. Predicting soil sorption coefficients of organic chemicals using a neural network model

    SciTech Connect

    Gao, C.; Govind, R.; Tabak, H.H.

    1996-07-01

    The soil/sediment adsorption partition coefficient normalized to organic carbon (K{sub oc}) is extensively used to assess the fate of organic chemicals in hazardous waste sites. Several attempts have been made to estimate the value of K{sub oc} from chemical structure or its parameters. The primary purpose of this study was to develop a nonlinear model for estimating K{sub oc} applicable to polar and nonpolar organics based on artificial neural networks using the octanol/water partition coefficient (K{sub ow}) and water solubility (S). An analytic equation was obtained by starting with a neural network, converging the bias and weight values using the available data on water solubility, octanol/water partition coefficient, and the normalized soil/sediment adsorption partition coefficient, and then combining the equations for each node in the final neural network. For the 119 chemicals in the training set, estimates using the neural network equation lie outside the 2{sigma} region (the standard deviation for the training set, {sigma} = 0.52) for only five chemicals, while all the chemicals in the test set lie within the 2{sigma} region. It was concluded that the neural network equation outperforms the linear models in fitting the K{sub oc} values for the training set and predicting them for the test set.

  8. A systematic study of mitochondrial toxicity of environmental chemicals using quantitative high throughput screening

    PubMed Central

    Attene-Ramos, Matias S.; Huang, Ruili; Sakamuru, Srilatha; Witt, Kristine L.; Beeson, Gyda C.; Shou, Louie; Schnellmann, Rick G.; Beeson, Craig C.; Tice, Raymond R.; Austin, Christopher P.; Xia, Menghang

    2014-01-01

    A goal of the Tox21 program is to transit toxicity testing from traditional in vivo models to in vitro assays that assess how chemicals affect cellular responses and toxicity pathways. A critical contribution of the NIH Chemical Genomics center (NCGC) to the Tox21 program is the implementation of a quantitative high throughput screening (qHTS) approach, using cell- and biochemical-based assays to generate toxicological profiles for thousands of environmental compounds. Here, we evaluated the effect of chemical compounds on mitochondrial membrane potential in HepG2 cells by screening a library of 1,408 compounds provided by the National Toxicology Program (NTP) in a qHTS platform. Compounds were screened over 14 concentrations, and results showed that 91 and 88 compounds disrupted mitochondrial membrane potential after treatment for one or five h, respectively. Seventy-six compounds active at both time points were clustered by structural similarity, producing 11 clusters and 23 singletons. Thirty-eight compounds covering most of the active chemical space were more extensively evaluated. Thirty-six of the 38 compounds were confirmed to disrupt mitochondrial membrane potential using a fluorescence plate reader and 35 were confirmed using a high content imaging approach. Among the 38 compounds, 4 and 6 induced LDH release, a measure of cytotoxicity, at 1 or 5 h, respectively. Compounds were further assessed for mechanism of action (MOA) by measuring changes in oxygen consumption rate, which enabled identification of 20 compounds as uncouplers. This comprehensive approach allows for evaluation of thousands of environmental chemicals for mitochondrial toxicity and identification of possible MOAs. PMID:23895456

  9. Carcinogenicity predictions for a group of 30 chemicals undergoing rodent cancer bioassays based on rules derived from subchronic organ toxicities

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Yongwon; Buchanan, B.G.; Rosenkranz, H.S.

    1996-10-01

    Rodent carcinogenicities for a group of 30 chemicals which form the subject of the Second NIEHS Predictive-Toxicology Evaluation Experiment are predicted based on their subchronic organ toxicities. Predictions are made by rules learned by the rule learning (RL) induction program. 7 refs., 5 tabs.

  10. Prediction of the sorption capacities and affinities of organic chemicals by XAD-7.

    PubMed

    Yang, Kun; Qi, Long; Wei, Wei; Wu, Wenhao; Lin, Daohui

    2016-01-01

    Macro-porous resins are widely used as adsorbents for the treatment of organic contaminants in wastewater and for the pre-concentration of organic solutes from water. However, the sorption mechanisms for organic contaminants on such adsorbents have not been systematically investigated so far. Therefore, in this study, the sorption capacities and affinities of 24 organic chemicals by XAD-7 were investigated and the experimentally obtained sorption isotherms were fitted to the Dubinin-Ashtakhov model. Linear positive correlations were observed between the sorption capacities and the solubilities (SW) of the chemicals in water or octanol and between the sorption affinities and the solvatochromic parameters of the chemicals, indicating that the sorption of various organic compounds by XAD-7 occurred by non-linear partitioning into XAD-7, rather than by adsorption on XAD-7 surfaces. Both specific interactions (i.e., hydrogen-bonding interactions) as well as nonspecific interactions were considered to be responsible for the non-linear partitioning. The correlation equations obtained in this study allow the prediction of non-linear partitioning using well-known chemical parameters, namely SW, octanol-water partition coefficients (KOW), and the hydrogen-bonding donor parameter (αm). The effect of pH on the sorption of ionizable organic compounds (IOCs) could also be predicted by combining the correlation equations with additional equations developed from the estimation of IOC dissociation rates. The prediction equations developed in this study and the proposed non-linear partition mechanism shed new light on the selective removal and pre-concentration of organic solutes from water and on the regeneration of exhausted XAD-7 using solvent extraction.

  11. Disruptive environmental chemicals and cellular mechanisms that confer resistance to cell death

    PubMed Central

    Narayanan, Kannan Badri; Ali, Manaf; Barclay, Barry J.; Cheng, Qiang (Shawn); D’Abronzo, Leandro; Dornetshuber-Fleiss, Rita; Ghosh, Paramita M.; Gonzalez Guzman, Michael J.; Lee, Tae-Jin; Leung, Po Sing; Li, Lin; Luanpitpong, Suidjit; Ratovitski, Edward; Rojanasakul, Yon; Romano, Maria Fiammetta; Romano, Simona; Sinha, Ranjeet K.; Yedjou, Clement; Al-Mulla, Fahd; Al-Temaimi, Rabeah; Amedei, Amedeo; Brown, Dustin G.; Ryan, Elizabeth P.; Colacci, Anna Maria; Hamid, Roslida A.; Mondello, Chiara; Raju, Jayadev; Salem, Hosni K.; Woodrick, Jordan; Scovassi, A.Ivana; Singh, Neetu; Vaccari, Monica; Roy, Rabindra; Forte, Stefano; Memeo, Lorenzo; Kim, Seo Yun; Bisson, William H.; Lowe, Leroy; Park, Hyun Ho

    2015-01-01

    Cell death is a process of dying within biological cells that are ceasing to function. This process is essential in regulating organism development, tissue homeostasis, and to eliminate cells in the body that are irreparably damaged. In general, dysfunction in normal cellular death is tightly linked to cancer progression. Specifically, the up-regulation of pro-survival factors, including oncogenic factors and antiapoptotic signaling pathways, and the down-regulation of pro-apoptotic factors, including tumor suppressive factors, confers resistance to cell death in tumor cells, which supports the emergence of a fully immortalized cellular phenotype. This review considers the potential relevance of ubiquitous environmental chemical exposures that