604 Midterm Vocab

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  1. Absorption
    The process of taking in.

    For a person or animal, absorption is the process of a substance getting into the body through the eyes, skin, stomach, intestines, or lungs.
  2. Acute
    Occurring over a short time

    (as opposed to chronic)
  3. Acute exposure
    Contact with a substance that occurs once or for only a short time (up to 14 days). 

    (compare with intermediate duration exposure and chronic exposure)
  4. Additive effect
    A biologic response to exposure to multiple substances that equals the sum of responses of all the individual substances added together

    (compare with antagonistic effect and synergistic effect)
  5. Adverse health effect
    A change in body function or cell structure that might lead to disease or health problems
  6. Ambient

    (e.g. ambient air)
  7. Analyte
    A substance measured in the laboratory. 

    A chemical for which a sample (e.g. water, air, blood) is tested in the laboratory. 

    (Example: if the analyte is mercury, the lab test will determine the amount of mercury in the sample)
  8. Antagonistic effect
    A biologic response to exposure to multiple substances that is less than would be expected if the known effects of the individual substances were added together

    [compare with additive effect and synergistic effect]
  9. Body burden
    The total amount of a substance in the body.

    (Some substances build up in the body because they are stored in fat or bone or because they leave the body very slowly.)
  10. Carcinogen
    A substance that causes cancer
  11. Chronic
    Occurring over a long time 

    (compare with acute)
  12. Chronic exposure
    Contact with a substance that occurs over a long time (more than 1 year)

    [compare with acute exposure and intermediate duration exposure]
  13. Concentration
    The amount of a substance present in a certain amount of soil, water, air, food, blood, hair, urine, breath, or any other media.
  14. Contaminant
    A substance that is either present in an environment where it does not belong or is present at levels that might cause harmful (adverse) health effects.
  15. Delayed health effect
    A disease or an injury that happens as a result of exposures that might have occurred in the past.
  16. Dermal
    Referring to the skin

    (e.g. dermal absorption means passing through the skin)
  17. Dermal contact
    Contact with (touching) the skin

    (a route of exposure)
  18. Dose 
    (for chemicals that are not radioactive)
    The amount of a substance to which a person is exposed over some time period

    Often expressed as: mg/kg/day (amount/body weight/time) when people eat or drink contaminated water, food, or soil.

    In general, the greater the dose, the greater the likelihood of an effect. An "exposure dose" is how much of a substance is encountered in the environment. An "absorbed dose" is the amount of a substance that actually got into the body through the eyes, skin, stomach, intestines, or lungs.
  19. Dose-response relationship
    The relationship between the amount of exposure (dose) to a substance and the resulting changes in body function or health (response).
  20. Environmental media
    Soil, water, air, biota (plants and animals), or any other parts of the environment that can contain contaminants.
  21. Exposure
    Contact with a substance by swallowing, breathing, or touching the skin or eyes.

    Exposure may be short-term [acute exposure], of intermediate duration, or long-term [chronic exposure].
  22. Exposure assessment
    The process of finding out how people come into contact with a hazardous substance, how often and for how long they are in contact with the substance, and how much of the substance they are in contact with.
  23. Hazard
    A source of potential harm from past, current, or future exposures.
  24. Hazardous waste
    Potentially harmful substances that have been released or discarded into the environment.
  25. Ingestion
    The act of swallowing something through eating, drinking, or mouthing objects.

    A hazardous substance can enter the body this way [see route of exposure].
  26. Inhalation
    The act of breathing.

    A hazardous substance can enter the body this way [see route of exposure].
  27. In vitro
    In an artificial environment outside a living organism or body.

    For example, some toxicity testing is done on cell cultures or slices of tissue grown in the laboratory, rather than on a living animal [compare with in vivo].
  28. In vivo
    Within a living organism or body.

    For example, some toxicity testing is done on whole animals, such as rats or mice [compare with in vitro].
  29. Metabolism
    The conversion or breakdown of a substance from one form to another by a living organism.
  30. Metabolite
    Any product of metabolism
  31. mg/kg
    milligram per kilogram
  32. mg/cm2
    milligram per square centimeter (of a surface)
  33. mg/m3
    milligram per cubic meter

    A measure of the concentration of a chemical in a known volume (a cubic meter) of air, soil, or water.
  34. Mutagen
    A substance that causes mutations (genetic damage)
  35. ppb
    parts per billion
  36. ppm
    parts per million
  37. RCRA
    Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (1976, 1984)

    This Act regulates management and disposal of hazardous wastes currently generated, treated, stored, disposed of, or distributed.
  38. Risk
    The probability that something will cause injury or harm.
  39. Route of exposure
    The way people come into contact with a hazardous substance.

    Three routes of exposure are breathing [inhalation], eating or drinking [ingestion], or contact with the skin [dermal contact].
  40. SARA
    Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act 

  41. Solvent
    A liquid capable of dissolving or dispersing another substance

    (e.g. acetone or mineral spirits)
  42. Substance
    A chemical
  43. Superfund
    See Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA) and Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA)

    In 1986, SARA amended the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA) and expanded the health-related responsibilities of ATSDR. CERCLA and SARA direct ATSDR to look into the health effects from substance exposures at hazardous waste sites and to perform activities including health education, health studies, surveillance, health consultations, and toxicological profiles.
  44. Synergistic effect
    A biologic response to multiple substances where one substance worsens the effect of another substance.

    The combined effect of the substances acting together is greater than the sum of the effects of the substances acting by themselves [see additive effect and antagonistic effect].
  45. Teratogen
    A substance that causes defects in development between conception and birth. A teratogen is a substance that causes a structural or functional birth defect.
  46. Toxic agent
    Chemical or physical (for example, radiation, heat, cold, microwaves) agents that, under certain circumstances of exposure, can cause harmful effects to living organisms.
  47. Toxicology
    The study of the harmful effects of substances on humans or animals.
  48. Volatile organic compound (VOCs)
    Organic compounds that evaporate readily into the air.

    VOCs include substances such as benzene, toluene, methylene chloride, and methyl chloroform.
Card Set:
604 Midterm Vocab
2015-08-29 05:54:19
604 Environmental Vocab
PH 604 Environ,MPH
Vocab that will be on the midterm
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