How does soil type impact PAH dermal bioavailability?

Wednesday 2nd March 2022 (13:00-14:00)
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With Alison Clayson, University of Nottingham.

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Part of the Geosciences Seminar Series.

Former manufactured gas plant (MGP) sites are known for exhibiting highly concentrated amounts of organic contaminants called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in their soils. PAHs are harmful to both the environment and human health. Human health risk assessments assess the risk of PAHs to humans from different exposure pathways; currently there is limited research into the dermal bioavailability of PAHs from MGP soils and the knowledge of which soil physicochemical properties influence the dermal bioavailability.

The majority of literature agrees that the amount and type of organic matter is the most predominant factor controlling the fate of PAHs in soils. Rock-Eval pyrolysis is one method that can be used to investigate the organic fractions present in soil, the process inflicts pyrolysis and combustion under programmed heating. Serval outputs are generated including the amounts of hydrocarbon, CO and CO2 released, which enable insight into the types of organics present in the soils.

In this seminar I will discuss the use of Rock-Eval pyrolysis to classify MGP soils collected from 10 different UK sites. I will share how the Rock-Eval parameters have enabled me to cluster my soils into groups with similar characteristics. Subsequently I will investigate if the Rock-Eval characteristics influence PAH dermal bioavailability, using in-vitro dermal absorption simulation experiments.

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