Variation in urinary spot sample, 24h samples, and longer-term average urinary concentrations of short-lived environmental chemicals: implications for exposure assessment and reverse dosimetry

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Abstract

Population biomonitoring data sets such as the Canadian Health Measures Survey (CHMS) and the United States National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) collect and analyze spot urine samples for analysis for biomarkers of exposure to nonpersistent chemicals. Estimation of population intakes using such data sets in a risk-assessment context requires consideration of intra- and inter-individual variability to understand the relationship between variation in the biomarker concentrations and variation in the underlying daily and longer-term intakes. Two intensive data sets with a total of 16 individuals with collection and measurement of serial urine voids over multiple days were used to examine these relationships using methyl paraben, triclosan, bisphenol A (BPA), monoethyl phthalate (MEP), and mono-2-ethylhexyl hydroxyl phthalate (MEHHP) as example compounds. Composited 24 h voids were constructed mathematically from the individual collected voids, and concentrations for each 24 h period and average multiday concentrations were calculated for each individual in the data sets. Geometric mean and 95th percentiles were compared to assess the relationship between distributions in spot sample concentrations and the 24 h and multiday collection averages. In these data sets, spot sample concentrations at the 95th percentile were similar to or slightly higher than the 95th percentile of the distribution of all 24 h composite void concentrations, but tended to overestimate the maximum of the multiday concentration averages for most analytes (usually by less than a factor of 2). These observations can assist in the interpretation of population distributions of spot samples for frequently detected analytes with relatively short elimination half-lives.

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