Dioxins and Human Health

by Thomas A. Gasiewicz, Univ of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Dioxin and Resource Recovery


Few environmental issues have attracted as much attention and controversy as the dioxins. Considerable expense has been incurred investigating effects in human populations and laboratory animals, cleaning up contaminated waste sites, reducing emissions from incinerators, and litigating issues arising from episodes of alleged human exposure. These issues have been clouded by limited data for striking human health effects despite abundant data for severe effects in laboratory animals. While it is clear that not all of the scientific questions are answered, many data are available regarding the chemical nature of these compounds, sources for human exposure, and the toxicity and mechanism of action in animal model systems. In addition, more recent information at the molecular level, some of which was obtained using human cell cultures, is useful for our understanding of the possible human health effects of these compounds.

Subject Headings: Public health and safety | Animals | Chemical compounds | Site investigation | Population projection | Waste sites | Health hazards | Air pollution

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