Uncertainty due to low-dose extrapolation: Modified BMD methodology for epidemiological data
- Publication Type:
- Journal Article
- Environmetrics, 2013, 24 (5), pp. 289 - 297
- Issue Date:
Traditional environmental risk assessment methodologies, including benchmark dose (BMD) estimation, were originally developed to be used with animal toxicology data. We discuss some problems that can occur when toxicology-based methods are applied to human cohort studies, and we propose a new method for BMD risk estimation adapted to epidemiological data. Instead of extrapolating to zero-dose levels to estimate risk in an unexposed population, our proposed alternative involves specifying a nonzero background exposure level instead. To account for uncertainty in that level, we can average modified BMDs over a distribution of exposure levels. We apply our modified BMD method to analyze data from a cohort study designed to assess the effects of prenatal polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) exposure on cognitive ability in young children. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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