Document Detail

The exposome: a new paradigm to study the impact of environment on health.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  24906490     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Environmental factors, here taken to include pollutants, lifestyle factors and behaviours, can play an important role in serious, chronic pathologies with large societal and economic costs, including respiratory disease. However, measurement of the environmental component in epidemiological studies has traditionally relied on much more uncertain and incomplete assessments than measurement of the genome. The 'exposome' has therefore been proposed as a new paradigm to encompass the totality of human environmental (meaning all non-genetic) exposures from conception onwards, complementing the genome. Evidently, there are large challenges in developing the exposome concept into a workable approach for epidemiological research. These include: (1) the accurate and reliable measurement of many exposures in the external environment, (2) the measurement of a wide range of biological responses in the internal environment, and (3) addressing the dynamic, life course nature of the exposome. New tools and technologies that can be applied to address these challenges include exposure biomarker technologies, geographical mapping and remote sensing technologies, smartphone applications and personal exposure sensors, and high-throughput molecular 'omics' techniques. Prospective, population-based cohort studies have recently started to implement these methods using the exposome framework. The exposome thus offers a new and exciting paradigm for improvement and integration of currently scattered and uncertain data on the environmental component in disease aetiology. This should lead to a better understanding of the role of environmental risk factors in respiratory disease and other chronic pathologies, and ultimately to better primary prevention strategies.
Martine Vrijheid
Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2014-6-6
Journal Detail:
Title:  Thorax     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1468-3296     ISO Abbreviation:  Thorax     Publication Date:  2014 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2014-6-7     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0417353     Medline TA:  Thorax     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Copyright Information:
Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to
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