The Medical University is taking part in a recently launched mega EU project to investigate human exposure to chemicals. It will involve testing the population in 26 countries to determine their exposure to environmental pollutants such as phthalates, bisphenols and cadmium. As part of the "Horizon 2020" programme, the EU Commission is funding the project known as "HBM4EU – The European Human Biomonitoring Initiative" to the tune of 50 million euros.
The German Ministry of the Environment is leading the project and MedUni Vienna is represented by working groups led by Claudia Gundacker (Division of Molecular Genetics), Eva Schernhammer (Division of Epidemiology), Bettina Grasl-Kraupp, Siegfried Knasmüllner (Institute of Cancer Research) and Hanns Moshammer (Division of Environmental Hygiene and Environmental Medicine).
The aim of the EU project is to compile a Europe-wide inventory of human exposure to chemicals and to create a European database for this. The teams involved will perform retrospective data analyses and conduct new studies to determine individual blood and urine levels of contaminants. These analyses will then be used to develop prevention strategies – especially for groups with a higher occupational exposure to chemicals and for special groups such as children and pregnant women.
All five researchers are also members of the Austrian Human Biomonitoring Platform at the Austrian Ministry of the Environment, which is a networking platform for scientific and administrative experts involved in health and environmental protection – from the Austrian Ministry of Health and Women, the Austrian Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Consumer Protection right through to universities and the General Accident Insurance Institution.
For further information: https://ec.europa.eu/research/conferences/2016/hbm4eu/index.cfm
Link to the Austrian Ministry of the Environment: http://www.umweltbundesamt.at/ueberuns/partner_netzwerke/plattform_humanbio/.