2012 Sino-European Symposium on Environment and Health (SESEH 2012)

Galway, Ireland, August 20 - 25, 2012



Medical Geology Short Course    (Download: Short course content)


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Course leaders: Jose Centeno, Olle Selinus, Bob Finkelman, Maurice Mulcahy

Schedule: August 19-20, 2012 for two days


The scope of this short course/workshop in medical geology is to share information on the relationship between the impacts of  toxic metal ions, trace elements, natural dusts, and their impacts on health. The scientific topics of the course will include toxicology; geochemistry; geoenvironmental epidemiology; extent, patterns and consequences of exposures to toxic metal ions and dust in the general environment (with the stress on the water quality), human health risk assessment studies, modern trends in metal analysis and updates on the geology, toxicology and pathology of metal ion and dust exposures. The course will include a practical exercise in assessing a hypothetical environmental health issue, proposing approaches to determine the environmental cause, and suggesting practical solutions to the problem.


Objectives: At the completion of this Short Course/Workshop, the attendees will be able to:

  • Know and gain information on the type of evidence available on geological sources and processes, environmental health, toxicology, and pathological manifestations of exposures of toxic metal species;

  • Know and gain information about geochemical processes, natural and anthropogenic sources, speciation, modes of occurrence; to assess the impact of trace elements and toxic metal ion species on human and environmental health;

  • Have an elementary understanding of environmental toxicology, epidemiology, medical geology as applied to the study of toxic metal species and trace elements.



Sunday, August 19


08.00 09.00 Registration

09.00 - 09.30 Introduction Welcome Remarks and Course Overview Jose A. Centeno, IMGA, USA, Robert B. Finkelman, IMGA, USA

9.30-10.30 The Emergent Discipline of Medical Geology – Past, Present and Future Olle Selinus – IMGA, Sweden

10.30-11.00 Coffee Break

Environmental Health, Toxicology, and Geochemical Aspects of Medical Geology

11.00- 12.00 Metals, Metalloids and Trace Elements - A Medical Geology Perspective Jose A. Centeno, IMGA, USA

12.00- 13.00 Natural and Anthropogenic Sources of Trace Elements in the Environment Robert B. Finkelman, IMGA, USA

13.00- 14.30 Lunch

14:30-15:15 Medical Geology and Health Effects of Lead and Mercury Exposure Jose A. Centeno, PhD, AFIP

15.15- 16.00 Trace elements in Medical Geology – Se and As – Selinus and Centeno

16.00-16.30 Coffe/teabreak

16.30-17.30 Arsenic – A Beneficial Therapeutic Agent and an Environmental Poison Jose A. Centeno, IMGA, USA

17.30-18 15 Health Impacts of Fossil Fuels – Robert Finkelman

18.15 Discussion


Monday, August 20


Environmental Health, Toxicology, and Geochemical Aspects of Medical Geology, cont.

08.30-09.30 Chemistry, Toxicology and Health Effects of Mineral Dust– Jose Centeno

09.30-10.00 Geophagy – Olle Selinus Database Information and Analytical Aspects of Medical Geology

10.00-11.00 Trace Element Speciation in Environmental Medicine and Toxicology and an Overview of Analytical methods for the study of trace elements, metals, and metalloids in biological and tissue samples José A. Centeno, PhD, AFIP

11.00-11.30 Coffee/Tea Break

11.45-12.15 Analytical methods for the study of trace elements andtoxic metal ions in geological and environmental samples. Robert B. Finkelman, PhD, USGS

12.15-13.00 Development and Use of International Databases for Medical Geology Olle Selinus, IMGA, Sweden

13.00- 14.30 Lunch

Emerging and Future Research Issues of Medical Geology

14.30- 15.15 Soil – The Essence of Medical Geology Robert B. Finkelman, IMGA, USA

15.15- 16.00 Health Benefits of Rocks and Minerals Robert B. Finkelman, IMGA, USA

16.00- 16.45 Integrating Earth Sciences and Public Health – Milestones and Future Developments (including Marinduque) José A. Centeno, IMGA, USA

16.45-17.15 Coffee/Tea Break

17.15- 18.15 Practical Exercise in medical Geology - All

18.15 Discussion and Course Certificates



Advanced Medical Mineralogy Short Course  (Download: Short course content)


Short course leaders: Dogan, Meral; Dogan, A. Umran

This short course will be organised in parallel sessions, open to all delegates without extra fees.


Health related (hazard/benefit) minerals and elements in rocks, soil, air, and water require quantitative characterization. The World Health Organization classified erionite (a zeolite group mineral with three different species as erionite-Na, erionite-K, and erionite-Ca); chrysotile (a serpentine type asbestos); tremolite, actinolite, grunerite (amosite), riebeckite (crocidolite), anthophyllite (amphibole type asbestos); and cristobalite (silica group mineral) as human carcinogens. These minerals and some recently recognized health hazard minerals including edenite, winchite, richterite, magnesio-riebeckite, magnesio-arfvedsonite, etc. (not classified as carcinogens yet) when inhaled, taken orally, or on dermatological contact, may play major roles in human health. Understanding the possible mechanisms that may induce, or could preclude unwanted biological responses, and to suggest and evaluate prevention, cure or remediation from mineral induced diseases is an active area in medical mineralogy. International Medical Geology Center in Ankara, Turkey, will act as a virtual center, promote medical geology research, and provide excellent platform for international collaboration



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2012 Sino-European Symposium on Environment and Health (SESEH 2012)