public health recommendations were provided
was the strongest predictor of consumption
to the congressman and to the New York State
among African Americans.
Department of Health.
ATSDR efforts in the Great Lakes were
Great Lakes Human Health
expanded in fiscal year 2002 with the addition
of two new projects. In one effort, ATSDR
Effects Research Program
is responding to a Congressional directive to
The Great Lakes Human Health Effects
report on the feasibility of establishing a pilot
Research Program is intended to build on, and
program in Michigan for fish consumption advi-
amplify, the results of past and ongoing
sories. With the involvement of a cross-agency,
fish-consumption research in the Great Lakes
multidisciplined team of scientists, the directive
basin, using existing structures and institutions
was met by demonstrating how ATSDR and its
already involved in human health research.
Great Lakes partners can build upon 10 years of
This ATSDR-supported research program tar-
successful research efforts in the basin to
gets known at-risk populations to further define
establish a new program that specifically
the human health consequences of exposure
addresses this emerging public health priority.
A 3-year effort was proposed. The report "Fish
Great Lakes basin.
Consumption Advisories in Michigan" can be
accessed on the ATSDR homepage. ATSDR
During fiscal year 2002, significant research
anticipates funding for this pilot project to be
findings were reported. Some
of those findings
available in fiscal year 2003.
include the following:
In a second effort, the International Joint
Serum PCB levels and consumption of Great
Commission (IJC) intends to comment on the
Lakes fish were significantly associated with
hazards posed by the continuing presence of
lower levels of thyroxine (T4), a hormone
hazardous substances in the 26 U.S. Great
secreted by the thyroid, in women and
Lakes' Areas of Concern (AOCs). To this end,
men. In contrast, fish consumption, but not
the Commission asked ATSDR to provide and
PCB serum levels, was significantly and
evaluate information on public health assess-
inversely associated with triiodothyronine
ments that it has conducted on hazardous waste
(T3), another hormone secreted by the thy-
sites within the 26 AOCs. ATSDR has agreed
roid, in men.
The fish consumption pattern of whites,
African Americans, and Hispanics was
provide, analyze, and interpret public health
studied in the New York state angler cohort
study. Among these three groups, the aver-
bring in other sources of relevant information
age number of fish meals consumed per year
develop and make available user-friendly
was 11.5, with African Americans consum-
applications for accessing the information
ing the most meals followed by Hispanics
prepare assessments for and across each
then whites at 40, 20, and 11 respectively.
African-Americans in the age group 36 to
40 consumed on average 56 meals per year.
Awareness of the fish advisories was lowest
in African Americans and highest in whites.
Lack of awareness of the health advisory
chapter 2 39