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Rice is a major exposure route for arsenic in Chakdaha block, Nadia district, west Bengal, India: A probabilistic risk assessment

Mondal, D and Polya, D 2008, 'Rice is a major exposure route for arsenic in Chakdaha block, Nadia district, west Bengal, India: A probabilistic risk assessment' , Applied Geochemistry, 23 (11) , pp. 2987-2998.

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Abstract

The importance or otherwise of rice as an exposure pathway for As ingestion by people living in Bengal and other areas impacted by hazardous As-bearing groundwaters is currently a matter of some debate. Here this issue is addressed by determining the overall increased cancer risk due to ingestion of rice in an As-impacted district of West Bengal. Human target cancer health risks have been estimated through the intake of As-bearing rice by using combined field, laboratory and computational methods. Monte Carlo simulations were run following fitting of model probability curves to measured distributions of (i) As concentration in rice and drinking water and (ii) inorganic As content of rice and fitting distributions to published data on (i) ingestion rates and (ii) body weight and point estimates on bioconcentration factors, exposure duration and other input variables. The distribution of As in drinking water was found to be substantially lower than that reported by previous authors for As in tube wells in the same area, indicating that the use of tube well water as a proxy for drinking water is likely to result in human health risks being somewhat overestimated. The calculated median increased lifetime cancer risk due to cooked rice intake was 7.62 x10 -4, higher than the 10-4–10-6 range typically used by the USEPA as a threshold to guide determination of regulatory values and similar to the equivalent risk from water intake. The median total risk from combined rice and water intake was 1.48x10-3. The contributions to this median risk from drinking water, rice and cooking of rice were found to be 48%, 44% and 8%, respectively. Thus, rice is a major potential source of As exposure in the As-affected study areas in West Bengal and the most important exposure pathway for groups exposed to low or no As in drinking water.

Item Type: Article
Themes: Health and Wellbeing
Schools: Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences > Ecosystems and Environment Research Centre
Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: Applied Geochemistry
Publisher: Pergamon-Elsevier Science
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0883-2927
Related URLs:
Funders: Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), Dorothy Hodgkins Postgraduate award
Depositing User: Dr Debapriya Mondal
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2013 10:47
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2015 23:58
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/28456

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