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“Good Epidemiology Practice” Guidelines for Pesticide Exposure Assessment

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Article number5114
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>15/07/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number14
Volume17
Number of pages15
Pages (from-to)1-15
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

Both toxicology and epidemiology are used to inform hazard and risk assessment in regulatory settings, particularly for pesticides. While toxicology studies involve controlled, quantifiable exposures that are often administered according to standardized protocols, estimating exposure in observational epidemiology studies is challenging, and there is no established guidance for doing so. However, there are several frameworks for evaluating the quality of published epidemiology studies. We previously developed a preliminary list of methodology and reporting standards for epidemiology studies, called Good Epidemiology Practice (GEP) guidelines, based on a critical review of standardized toxicology protocols and available frameworks for evaluating epidemiology study quality. We determined that exposure characterization is one of the most critical areas for which standards are needed. Here, we propose GEP guidelines for pesticide exposure assessment based on the source of exposure data (i.e., biomonitoring and environmental samples, questionnaire/interview/expert record review, and dietary exposures based on measurements of residues in food and food consumption). It is expected that these GEP guidelines will facilitate the conduct of higher-quality epidemiology studies that can be used as a basis for more scientifically sound regulatory risk assessment and policy making. © 2020, MDPI AG. All rights reserved.