Occupational Toxicology

A general background on the methodology in the field of occupational toxicology will be provided, with an important role of occupational hygiene, epidemiology and medicine. Much attention will be given to methods of exposure assessment, such as the characterisation of inhalation and dermal exposures and the use of biomarkers to study uptake of industrial chemicals.

Some lectures will cover specific areas like the use of omics approaches and specific groups of chemicals relevant to workplace exposures – like the toxicology of amines, metals, nano-sized particles and of complex toxic process emissions (e.g. engine exhaust, rubber manufacturing and welding fumes). Training will be provided to develop skills in the interpretation of information about the chemical composition of industrial products and process emissions (hazard assessment) using different approaches, such as data-mining and structure activity relationships (SARs).

The process of skin absorption will also be studied via computer training. Modelling of dose-response relationships will be used to derive a safe level for workers using data from small scale experimental (animal or volunteer) studies. Several days will be reserved for field trips to visit several industrial sites in the Ruhr area, showing both traditional activities, such as mining, and also modern-technology production facilities for the production of bulk and fine chemicals.


Following completion of the course, participants will be aware of the:

  • most important chemical/biological risk factors encountered on the workplace and their toxic mechanisms of action;
  • current developments in the field of scientific research applicable to occupational toxicology;
  • methods that can be used to perform a quantitative health risk assessment on the workplace.

Participants will also be able to:

  • perform an initial toxicological hazard assessment of the toxicity of and industrial chemical product;
  • derive a safe health-based occupational exposure level for workers exposed to a specific toxic substance using published dose response data;
  • use a quantitative structure-activity relationship for an initial semi-quantitative assessment of skin absorption.

Course Type: Commercial Courses

Learning Type: In Person, Online

Start Months: May, June

Course Duration: Full Time

Full Time Hours: 1 week

Qualifications Required: No formal qualification

Cost: €330 internal PhD student, €550 external PhD student, €1650 other

Contact details of organiser: Postgraduate Education in Toxicology (PET) - office.pet@uu.nl

Entry Requirements:

Attendance in person from 28th to 30th May 2024, and online from 6th to 7th June 2024.

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