What is human biomonitoring?


Human biomonitoring is a research method consisting in "measuring inside the human body". Man, animal and environment are exposed to pollutants. In order to know those pollutants that are within men and to know which possible effects they can have on health, measures must be carried out in the human body. Biomonitoring consists in the examination of urine, hair, blood, saliva, mother's milk, fat tissues or, for instance, sperm cell. The conditions illustrate the quantity of substances absorbed and how they are stored or processed by the body. It doesn't always give direct information as to the health risks of these substances but they are most interesting to check the degree in which people are exposed.


The analyses are also called biomarker measurements. Biomarkerscan also assess the exposure to substances (exposure biomarkers), they can provide a picture of biochemical or physiological changes that take place in the body and that may be the result of the exposure to substances (effect biomarkers), or they give an idea of the extent of one's sensitivity to accumulation or to effects of the substances (biomarker of individual sensitivity).