Faculty Publications

Exposure Methodology And Findings For Dietary Nitrate Exposures In Children Of Transylvania, Romania

Document Type



Children, Exposure assessment, Nitrate exposure, Romania, Transylvania

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of Exposure Analysis and Environmental Epidemiology





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Aims: The primary focus of this exposure assessment work involved developing an exposure model and determining a numerical point estimate of the amount of biologically relevant nitrate/nitrite exposure that occurred for each child in the study. This assessment was done in support of two epidemiological studies. The first study was an epidemiological cohort study (three cohorts based on nitrate/nitrite exposure) that explored the relationship between high nitrate/nitrite exposure and neuropsychological development. The second study was a nested case/control study (cases of methemoglobinemia versus disease-free controls) that sought to explore the relationship between MHG and various risk factors for the disease. Methods: This work uses both dietary survey and environmental sampling and modeling in order to develop two point estimates of nitrate exposure in milligrams per kilogram per day of nitrite (the biologically active form of the hemoglobin-oxidizing agent) for the first 6 months of the child's life (2-months-of-age and 6-months-of-age point estimates). Methodologies included proxy interviews of primary caregivers, review of existing medical and environmental sampling and analysis. Results: Exposure to nitrate-nitrogen (with final calculations converted to the biologically active form of the toxin, nitrite) was categorized as high, medium, and low as determined from the distribution of the data derived from final exposure calculations at both the 2 -months-of-age point estimate and at the 6-months-of-age point estimate. These tertiles correspond to ≥1.5 mg/kg/day nitrite-nitrogen for high-exposure individuals,


School of Health, Physical Education, and Leisure Services

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