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HOME > Korean J Prev Med > Volume 32(2); 1999 > Article
Original Article Risk Assessment on Carcinogenic Pesticides of Vegetables in Korea.
Jae Hong Yoon, Jong Tae Lee, Yong Chung, Dongchun Shin
Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health 1999;32(2):155-161
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1Institute for Environmental Research, Yonsei University, Korea.
2Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, College of Medicine, Yonsei University, Korea.

The study was conducted to estimate the carcinogenic risks from the ingestion of some carcinogenic pesticides (CPs) in vegetables sampled at a local agricultural product market in Seoul. METHODS: After applying a hazard identification step, we selected four pesticides, such as DDT, dieldrin, folpet, and heptachlor epoxide, for this risk assessment. Concentrations of each pesticide were measured from randomly sampled vegetables. In order to estimate the human exposure levels, we combined the concentration of pesticides in the vegetables with consumption rate of those vegetables. Three scenarios were hypothesized for human exposure assessment. Scenario I was the most conservative which supposed the undetected CPs would be the detection limit values. Scenario II was assumed that the undetected CPs would be a half of the detection limit values, and finally scenario III merely considered only values greater than the detection limit values. We finally presented the estimated carcinogenic risks on the basis of the traditional risk assessment procedure suggested by U.S. EPA. RESULTS: Pesticides including DDT, dieldrin, folpet and heptachlor epoxide were detected in 9 samples (6%) in the range of 0.0006~0.09ppm. The daily intake levels of carcinogenic pesticides were estimated in the range of 0.0009~0.0079 microgram/day. As we expected, excess cancer risks based on scenario I was also the highest (1.1x10-8~ 5.5x10-5). CONCLUSIONS: We found that the estimated risks from the pesticides we investigated were not serious. We, however, propose that a continuos monitoring is needed to make sure for the protection of public health.

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JPMPH : Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health