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Uses of NHANES Biomarker Data for Chemical Risk Assessment: Trends, Challenges, and Opportunities.

Sobus JR, DeWoskin RS, Tan YM, Pleil JD, Phillips MB, George BJ, Christensen K, Schreinemachers DM, Williams MA, Hubal EA, Edwards SW - Environ. Health Perspect. (2015)

Bottom Line: Publications linking chemical biomarkers to health metrics have increased dramatically in recent years.New studies are addressing challenges related to NHANES data interpretation in health risk contexts.Best practices for analysis and interpretation must be defined and adopted to allow the full potential of NHANES to be realized.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: National Exposure Research Laboratory, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, USA.

ABSTRACT

Background: Each year, the U.S. NHANES measures hundreds of chemical biomarkers in samples from thousands of study participants. These biomarker measurements are used to establish population reference ranges, track exposure trends, identify population subsets with elevated exposures, and prioritize research needs. There is now interest in further utilizing the NHANES data to inform chemical risk assessments.

Objectives: This article highlights a) the extent to which U.S. NHANES chemical biomarker data have been evaluated, b) groups of chemicals that have been studied, c) data analysis approaches and challenges, and d) opportunities for using these data to inform risk assessments.

Methods: A literature search (1999-2013) was performed to identify publications in which U.S. NHANES data were reported. Manual curation identified only the subset of publications that clearly utilized chemical biomarker data. This subset was evaluated for chemical groupings, data analysis approaches, and overall trends.

Results: A small percentage of the sampled NHANES-related publications reported on chemical biomarkers (8% yearly average). Of 11 chemical groups, metals/metalloids were most frequently evaluated (49%), followed by pesticides (9%) and environmental phenols (7%). Studies of multiple chemical groups were also common (8%). Publications linking chemical biomarkers to health metrics have increased dramatically in recent years. New studies are addressing challenges related to NHANES data interpretation in health risk contexts.

Conclusions: This article demonstrates growing use of NHANES chemical biomarker data in studies that can impact risk assessments. Best practices for analysis and interpretation must be defined and adopted to allow the full potential of NHANES to be realized.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Tree diagram of publications identified via PubMed searches, selected via manual curation, and categorized by a data analysis approach (A). Trends in data analysis approaches for 1999–2013 (B).
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f3: Tree diagram of publications identified via PubMed searches, selected via manual curation, and categorized by a data analysis approach (A). Trends in data analysis approaches for 1999–2013 (B).

Mentions: Analysis categories. Step one of the PubMed literature search (NHANES + U.S. query) yielded 3,224 publications, step two (NHANES + U.S. + biomarkers query) yielded 1,382 publications, and manual curation yielded 273 publications (Figure 3A). Of the 273 studies that focused on chemical biomarkers, 148 (54%) performed an exposure assessment and 125 (46%) examined health associations. These results suggest that the chemical biomarker–related publications are evenly split between analysis categories over the past 15 years. Figure 3B shows the number of yearly publications for the two analysis categories. Limited numbers of papers were observed early in the review period, so data across 1999, 2000, and 2001 were combined. No trends were observed for either category prior to 2008. However, a sharp rise in exposure assessment studies was observed for 2004, and then again for 2008. These elevations likely reflect releases of the NHANES 1999–2000, 2001–2002, and 2003–2004 data sets (CDC 2003, 2005, 2009). The number of yearly exposure assessment studies remained relatively flat between 2008 and 2013. Health association studies, however, increased dramatically in number over the last 5 years of the review period. In fact, nearly 70% of the curated 2013 publications focused on health associations. This suggests growing interest in using the NHANES data to link chemical biomarkers and health measures.


Uses of NHANES Biomarker Data for Chemical Risk Assessment: Trends, Challenges, and Opportunities.

Sobus JR, DeWoskin RS, Tan YM, Pleil JD, Phillips MB, George BJ, Christensen K, Schreinemachers DM, Williams MA, Hubal EA, Edwards SW - Environ. Health Perspect. (2015)

Tree diagram of publications identified via PubMed searches, selected via manual curation, and categorized by a data analysis approach (A). Trends in data analysis approaches for 1999–2013 (B).
© Copyright Policy - public-domain
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4590763&req=5

f3: Tree diagram of publications identified via PubMed searches, selected via manual curation, and categorized by a data analysis approach (A). Trends in data analysis approaches for 1999–2013 (B).
Mentions: Analysis categories. Step one of the PubMed literature search (NHANES + U.S. query) yielded 3,224 publications, step two (NHANES + U.S. + biomarkers query) yielded 1,382 publications, and manual curation yielded 273 publications (Figure 3A). Of the 273 studies that focused on chemical biomarkers, 148 (54%) performed an exposure assessment and 125 (46%) examined health associations. These results suggest that the chemical biomarker–related publications are evenly split between analysis categories over the past 15 years. Figure 3B shows the number of yearly publications for the two analysis categories. Limited numbers of papers were observed early in the review period, so data across 1999, 2000, and 2001 were combined. No trends were observed for either category prior to 2008. However, a sharp rise in exposure assessment studies was observed for 2004, and then again for 2008. These elevations likely reflect releases of the NHANES 1999–2000, 2001–2002, and 2003–2004 data sets (CDC 2003, 2005, 2009). The number of yearly exposure assessment studies remained relatively flat between 2008 and 2013. Health association studies, however, increased dramatically in number over the last 5 years of the review period. In fact, nearly 70% of the curated 2013 publications focused on health associations. This suggests growing interest in using the NHANES data to link chemical biomarkers and health measures.

Bottom Line: Publications linking chemical biomarkers to health metrics have increased dramatically in recent years.New studies are addressing challenges related to NHANES data interpretation in health risk contexts.Best practices for analysis and interpretation must be defined and adopted to allow the full potential of NHANES to be realized.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: National Exposure Research Laboratory, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, USA.

ABSTRACT

Background: Each year, the U.S. NHANES measures hundreds of chemical biomarkers in samples from thousands of study participants. These biomarker measurements are used to establish population reference ranges, track exposure trends, identify population subsets with elevated exposures, and prioritize research needs. There is now interest in further utilizing the NHANES data to inform chemical risk assessments.

Objectives: This article highlights a) the extent to which U.S. NHANES chemical biomarker data have been evaluated, b) groups of chemicals that have been studied, c) data analysis approaches and challenges, and d) opportunities for using these data to inform risk assessments.

Methods: A literature search (1999-2013) was performed to identify publications in which U.S. NHANES data were reported. Manual curation identified only the subset of publications that clearly utilized chemical biomarker data. This subset was evaluated for chemical groupings, data analysis approaches, and overall trends.

Results: A small percentage of the sampled NHANES-related publications reported on chemical biomarkers (8% yearly average). Of 11 chemical groups, metals/metalloids were most frequently evaluated (49%), followed by pesticides (9%) and environmental phenols (7%). Studies of multiple chemical groups were also common (8%). Publications linking chemical biomarkers to health metrics have increased dramatically in recent years. New studies are addressing challenges related to NHANES data interpretation in health risk contexts.

Conclusions: This article demonstrates growing use of NHANES chemical biomarker data in studies that can impact risk assessments. Best practices for analysis and interpretation must be defined and adopted to allow the full potential of NHANES to be realized.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus