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J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2008;71(3):166-95.

Modeling approaches for estimating the dosimetry of inhaled toxicants in children.

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  • 1Connecticut Department of Public Health, Hartford, CT 06134, UAS.


Risk assessment of inhaled toxicants has typically focused upon adults, with modeling used to extrapolate dosimetry and risks from lab animals to humans. However, behavioral factors such as time spent playing outdoors may lead to more exposure to inhaled toxicants in children. Depending on the inhaled agent and the age and size of the child, children may receive a greater internal dose than adults because of greater ventilation rate per body weight or lung surface area, or metabolic differences may result in different tissue burdens. Thus, modeling techniques need to be adapted to children in order to estimate inhaled dose and risk in this potentially susceptible life stage. This paper summarizes a series of inhalation dosimetry presentations from the U.S. EPA's Workshop on Inhalation Risk Assessment in Children held on June 8-9, 2006 in Washington, DC. These presentations demonstrate how existing default models for particles and gases may be adapted for children, and how more advanced modeling of toxicant deposition and interaction in respiratory airways takes into account children's anatomy and physiology. These modeling efforts identify child-adult dosimetry differences in respiratory tract regions that may have implications for children's vulnerability to inhaled toxicants. A decision framework is discussed that considers these different approaches and modeling structures including assessment of parameter values, supporting data, reliability, and selection of dose metrics.

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