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Your Environment. Your Health.

Oregon State University

Superfund Research Program

Chemical Mixtures Core

Project Leader: Kim A. Anderson
Grant Number: P42ES016465
Funding Period: 2009-2025

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Project Summary (2020-2025)

Superfund sites contain mixtures of many contaminants. The US EPA Supplemental Guidance for Conducting Health Risk Assessments of Chemicals stated that "approaches based on whole mixtures are preferred to component approaches." The research community needs robust, analyte-rich methods suitable for complex matrixes. The scientific community needs new, specialized, more sensitive methods to separate, detect, and quantify dozens of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and substituted PAHs with widely varying concentrations and chemical properties in complex, heterogeneous matrices. These challenges continue to drive the development of analytical methods for PAHs, substituted PAHs and PAH transformation products, as well as Superfund co-contaminants. It is demanding to analyze PAHs and x-PAHs in environmental and biological matrices because the samples are complex, the numerous isomers of alkylated and high molecular mass compounds are often difficult to differentiate, and researchers often lack standards and suitable reference materials. The primary goal of the Chemistry Mixtures Core (CMC) is to support other Superfund Center projects and cores. The CMC will maximize access to quality-assured quantitative analytical technologies and empower teams to increase their creativity and knowledge. The CMC will create new and improved methods for PAHs, PAH metabolites, and substituted PAHs (e.g., alkyl-, oxygen- and nitrogen- substituted PAHs) and will collaborate with the Data Management and Analysis Core (DMAC) to improve the unique web-based interface for requesting standards, certified reference materials, and submitting samples. The CMC will develop and improve the high-volume data production and management platform and will expand the 1,530-analyte screen by continuing to develop reductionist methods for mixture analysis. The CMC will create bioavailable real-world reference materials from Superfund soil, sediment and water extracts in collaboration with the environmental projects and provide these materials to the biological projects. The Chemical Mixtures Core will provide web-based training material for analytical methods and bio-analytical technologies to center investigators and trainees.

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