Review the Original Journal Article(s) that Served as the Basis for the Non-Cancer Health Guidelines, If Warranted

This section describes an optional step for health assessors, if warranted, to review the original journal articles that served as the basis for the non-cancer health guidelines.

Another step when examining non-cancer health effects, if you think it’s necessary, is reviewing the original journal articles that served as the basis for the non-cancer health guidelines. After reviewing information in ATSDR’s Toxicological Profile (e.g., Appendix A, MRL worksheet) or EPA’s IRIS, you may still have questions, such as how to interpret the results and whether the study duration or limitations might affect your interpretation (as discussed in the Study Applicability to Site-Specific Exposures section). In these cases, a review of the original journal article(s) that were the basis for the health guideline could provide additional insight into health effects identified by the critical study.

Thus, sometimes it might be useful to read the journal article that the health guideline is based upon. These journal articles are available to ATSDR staff at no charge through the CDC library via DocExpress. ATSDR’s APPLETREE partners can request journal articles through their ATSDR Technical Project Officer.

Note: If you feel it’s needed, you might review the basis (applicability and strength) of the study data used to generate the health guidelines. This review provides perspective on how strongly the supporting toxicologic data suggest that harmful exposures might occur under your site-specific exposure conditions. Note, for MRLs, you are not evaluating the validity of the study for serving as the basis of the MRL. ATSDR scientists have already done that. If you opt to do this step, you are reviewing the study to see whether it has additional information that helps you make a decision about health effects from site-specific exposures. If needed, consider getting help from a toxicologist when seeking and interpreting these data.

DocExpress requires that you have the journal name, article title, volume, year, and inclusive page numbers. For MRLs, this information is in the MRL worksheet. If you do not have this information, get it from an online service like NLM’s PubMed serviceexternal icon.

Page last reviewed: April 14, 2022