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Kunert H.J.,University of Gottingen | Ngoc D.T.M.,National Institute of Occupational and Environmental Health | Trang P.T.K.,Sustainable Development Technology | Lan V.T.M.,Sustainable Development Technology | And 3 more authors.
One Century of the Discovery of Arsenicosis in Latin America (1914-2014): As 2014 - Proceedings of the 5th International Congress on Arsenic in the Environment

The health hazards caused by chronic or sub acute arsenic) exposure are well documented. However, the effects of chronic low-level exposure of arsenic on neurocognitive functions are rarely reported. Dysfunctions in the domains of intelligence, learning and memory, attentiveness, as well as visual, spatial and acoustic processing have been described. Taken together, these cognitive dysfunctions point to a comprehensive dysfunctional integrity of the human brain which correlates with exposure to arsenic. First results of a neuropsychological field study in rural areas of the Red River Delta in northern Vietnam demonstrate specific effects on neurocognitive functions regarding to as exposure. © 2014 Taylor & Francis Group. Source

Marcussen H.,Copenhagen University | Ha L.T.,National Institute of Occupational and Environmental Health | Polprasert C.,Thammasat University | Holm P.E.,Copenhagen University
Journal of Environmental Science and Health - Part A Toxic/Hazardous Substances and Environmental Engineering

Wastewater-fed aquatic production has been practiced since the 1960s in peri-urban Hanoi. Wastewater is used as a cheap and reliable source of both water and nutrients but there is a risk that it may lead to accumulation of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) in the production systems and produce and thereby constitute a food safety risk. This study investigates the cadmium (Cd) and arsenic (As) concentrations in water, sediment, plant and fish of a wastewater fed-fish pond in Hoang Mai district, Hanoi, Vietnam. Cd concentrations in the water were lower than the Vietnamese quality guidelines (0.8-1.8 μg Cd/L) for protection of aquatic life but As concentrations in inlet and outlet water of 44.3 and 21.3 μg/L, respectively both were higher that the guidelines (20 μg As/L) and may cause toxicity to fish in the pond and the surrounding vegetable farms using the outlet water for irrigation. The concentrations of Cd and As in fish and Cd in water spinach did not constitute a food safety risk. However, As concentrations in water spinach may be of concern. A mass balance estimate for the fish pond showed that about 12% of the incoming As accumulate in suspended particular matters, 40% settle down to the sediment, less than 0.1% accumulate in the fish and water spinach and 48% overflow with the pond effluent. The concentrations of Cd were too low to make a mass balance for the fish pond. © 2012 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC. Source

Norra C.,Ruhr University Bochum | Ngoc D.T.M.,National Institute of Occupational and Environmental Health | Trang P.T.K.,Sustainable Development Technology | Lan V.T.M.,Sustainable Development Technology | And 3 more authors.
Understanding the Geological and Medical Interface of Arsenic, As 2012 - 4th International Congress: Arsenic in the Environment

Chronic low-level exposure of arsenic (As) in drinking water is assumed to have a negative impact not only on physical but also on mental health. An interdisciplinary pilot study was conducted in two rural areas with high and low As concentration in drinking water in the Red River Delta region near Hanoi, Vietnam. Subtle neuropsychiatric deficits were detected with sensorimotor abnormalities, headaches, mood disturbances, and somatization in correlation to individual As concentrations pointing to effects of neurotoxicity in As contaminated individuals. Our neuropsychiatric test battery of the nervous system may quality as a sensitive maker of the more subtle neurotoxic influences of chronic As exposure. © 2012 Taylor & Francis Group. Source

Thai P.K.,University of Queensland | Thai P.K.,Queensland University of Technology | Li Z.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Sjodin A.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | And 4 more authors.

Exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) has been associated with adverse health outcomes. Concentrations of urinary PAH metabolites (OH-PAHs) provide an integrated measure of human exposure to PAHs but measurement of urinary OH-PAHs has not been done in Australia and rarely in Vietnam, where air pollution is of concern. In this study, we assessed exposure to PAHs in 16 participants living in Brisbane, Australia and Hanoi, Vietnam, with 4 participants travelling between the two cities during the monitoring period. A total of 312 first morning urine samples were collected over 10. weeks and were analysed for nine OH-PAHs. Concentrations of the urinary OH-PAHs were 2-10 times higher in participants from Hanoi than those from Brisbane. For example, the median concentrations of 1-hydroxypyrene were 292. pg/mL in Hanoi, compared to 64. pg/mL in Brisbane. For participants travelling from Brisbane to Hanoi and back, differences in exposure to PAHs in these two cities resulted in corresponding changes of urinary OH-PAH concentrations, demonstrating that the more polluted environment in Hanoi was likely the source for higher PAH exposure there. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Wertheim H.F.,University of Oxford | Ngoc D.M.,National Institute of Occupational and Environmental Health | Wolbers M.,University of Oxford | Binh T.T.,National Institute of Occupational and Environmental Health | And 13 more authors.
Environmental Health: A Global Access Science Source

Background: Urban air pollution is an increasing health problem, particularly in Asia, where the combustion of fossil fuels has increased rapidly as a result of industrialization and socio-economic development. The adverse health impacts of urban air pollution are well established, but less is known about effective intervention strategies. In this demonstration study we set out to establish methods to assess whether wearing an R95 activated carbon respirator could reduce intake of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) in street workers in Hanoi, Vietnam. Methods. In this demonstration study we performed a cross-over study in which non-smoking participants that worked at least 4 hours per day on the street in Hanoi were randomly allocated to specific respirator wearing sequences for a duration of 2 weeks. Urines were collected after each period, i.e. twice per week, at the end of the working day to measure hydroxy PAHs (OH-PAH) using gas chromatography/high resolution mass spectrometry. The primary endpoint was the urinary concentration of 1-hydroxypyrene (1-OHP). Results: Forty-four participants (54.5% male, median age 40 years) were enrolled with the majority being motorbike taxi drivers (38.6%) or street vendors (34.1%). The baseline creatinine corrected urinary level for 1-OHP was much higher than other international comparisons: 1020 ng/g creatinine (IQR: 604-1551). Wearing a R95 mask had no significant effect on 1-OHP levels: estimated multiplicative effect 1.0 (95% CI: 0.92-1.09) or other OH-PAHs, except 1-hydroxynaphthalene (1-OHN): 0.86 (95% CI: 0.11-0.96). Conclusions: High levels of urine OH-PAHs were found in Hanoi street workers. No effect was seen on urine OH-PAH levels by wearing R95 particulate respirators in an area of high urban air pollution, except for 1-OHN. A lack of effect may be de to gaseous phase PAHs that were not filtered efficiently by the respirator. The high levels of urinary OH-PAHs found, urges for effective interventions. Trial registration. ISRCTN74390617 (date of assignation: 04/08/2009). © 2012 Wertheim et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

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