Assessing Levels of Organophosphorus Insecticides Which Could Expose Children From Pets Treated with Flea Control Insecticides

EPA Grant Number: R825170
Title: Assessing Levels of Organophosphorus Insecticides Which Could Expose Children From Pets Treated with Flea Control Insecticides
Investigators: Chambers, Janice E. , Boone, J. Scott , Tyler, John W.
Institution: Mississippi State University - Main Campus
EPA Project Officer: Saint, Chris
Project Period: October 1, 1996 through September 30, 1999
Project Amount: $597,804
RFA: Exposure of Children to Pesticides (1996) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Pesticides , Children's Health , Health Effects , Health , Safer Chemicals

Description:

There are reported insecticide residues present in food, water, and surfaces such as on carpets treated for flea control. However, no studies have quantified the dislodgable flea control insecticide residues which occur on pets (most of which are dogs) that could be transferred to children. These dermal exposures easily become oral exposures when children place their contaminated hands in their mouths. Many of these agents are organophosphorus (OP) insecticides and are considerably more toxic orally than dermally. Our calculations have estimated that transfer of these residues could result in exposure levels exceeding the adult reference dose (RfD), which does not account for the greater sensitivity of children. Because of this lack of information and the likelihood of appreciable insecticide residues being present in pet fur, we propose to test the following hypothesis: The residues of OP insecticides available to transfer to humans from the fur of dogs treated by either a dip or a collar for flea control will be appreciable and of a magnitude necessitating inclusion in risk assessments of pesticides to children.

This project will generate unique information which will improve the risk assessment process for children's exposures to pesticides by determining the amount of residues which may be obtained from pets which are treated with flea control insecticides. Treatment of the dogs with either chlorpyrifos or phosmet in a dip, or chlorpyrifos in a flea collar will be performed according to label directions. Dogs will be sampled before and after treatment by rubbing the fur with white cotton gloves using a standardized protocol. These gloves will be extracted with organic solvents by standard methods used for pesticide residue analysis, and the extract will be analyzed by gas chromatography. Concurrent sampling of blood for cholinesterase inhibition will be performed as an index of internal dose of the insecticides in the dogs. This approach will be conducted in three specific aims: 1) to study the availability of residues of chlorpyrifos or phosmet from the fur of dogs dipped with these insecticides with no shampooing between treatments; 2) to study the availability of residues of chlorpyrifos or phosmet from the fur of dogs dipped with these insecticides with shampooing between treatments; and 3) to study the availability of residues of chlorpyrifos from dogs treated with a flea collar. These exposure estimates will indicate whether appreciable residues are available from common flea control strategies and whether a procedure such as bathing the dog can reduce the potential risk to children.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this project: View all 5 publications for this project

Journal Articles:

Journal Articles have been submitted on this project: View all 1 journal articles for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

pesticides,children, exposure assessment, pets, organophosphates., RFA, Health, Scientific Discipline, Toxics, Environmental Chemistry, Health Risk Assessment, pesticides, Risk Assessments, Susceptibility/Sensitive Population/Genetic Susceptibility, Children's Health, genetic susceptability, health effects, pesticide exposure, risk assessment, sensitive populations, dermal exposure, adult reference dose, Phosmet, health risks, infants, age-related differences, chlorpyrifos, dermal contact, dogs, measuring childhood exposure, exposure, pets, air pollution, children, assessment of exposure, children's vulnerablity, susceptibility, toxicity, human exposure, insecticides, pesticide residues, exposure pathways, harmful environmental agents, dietary exposure, flea control insecticides, organophosphate pesticides

Relevant Websites:

Synthesis Report of Research from EPA’s Science to Achieve Results (STAR) Grant Program: Feasibility of Estimating Pesticide Exposure and Dose in Children Using Biological Measurements (PDF) (42 pp, 3.87 MB)

Progress and Final Reports:

1998 Progress Report
1999 Progress Report
Final Report