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The Effect of Toxic Cyanobacteria on Human and Animal Health
Hilborn, E. The Effect of Toxic Cyanobacteria on Human and Animal Health. 2014 International Symposium for One Health Research, Guangzhou, CHINA, November 22 - 23, 2014.
One health is a concept that encompasses the health and well-being of humans, animals and the environment. Each of these elements is interconnected, yet conventional scientific training and practice tend to keep them separated. The usual examples of one health practice, cite zoonotic disease (infectious disease shared by humans and animals) that is influenced by environmental factors. In this presentation, I will show how environmental health is a one health issue as well, and that animals can act as sentinels of human health risk for exposure to cyanobacteria and their toxins.
The study of environmental health typically focuses on human populations. However, companion animals, livestock and wildlife also experience adverse health effects from environmental pollutants. Animals may experience direct exposure to pollutants unlike people in most ambient exposure situations, as potable water, foodstuffs and sometimes air designated for human use receives treatment and/or quality control procedures. As most animal exposures are not reduced via these methods, animals may act as sentinels of health risks due to higher exposures, species-specific susceptibilities and shorter lifespans. Examples of One Health environmental issues include toxic exposures to pesticides, lead, mercury, and biotoxins. We will provide an overview of some environmental health issues applicable to the practice of One Health with a special emphasis on harmful algal blooms associated with the occurrence of cyanobacteria and their toxins in freshwater. We will characterize cyanobacteria and their toxins and discuss the effect of anthropogenic activities on their occurrence. Finally, we will describe outbreaks of illness associated with harmful algal blooms in recreational lakes that affected humans and animals during 2009 – 2010 in the United States. This is an abstract of a proposed presentation and does not necessarily reflect EPA policy.
URLs/Downloads:ORD-009042-ABSTRACTHILBORN ONE HEALTH_14.DOC
Record Details:Record Type: DOCUMENT (PRESENTATION/SLIDE)
Organization:U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
NATIONAL HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS RESEARCH LABORATORY
ENVIRONMENTAL PUBLIC HEALTH DIVISION