Catalan Water Research Institute research and innovation for the sustainable use of water

ICRA-CERCA hosts the start-up meeting of the EXPOWASTE project

Wednesday, 22 November 2023

On November 20, ICRA -CERCA hosted the kick-off meeting of the EXPOWASTE project (“Integrating human biomonitoring and wastewater-based epidemiology to assess exposure to harmful chemicals and biological agents”) funded by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation. EXPOWASTE coordinates two subprojects: Subproject#1 is led by ICRA-CERCA researchers, while Subproject#2 is led by IDAEA-CSIC researchers. The project also has the participation of specialists in public and environmental health from the Autonomous Public Health Organization of the Diputació de Girona (Dipsalut).

The meeting was attended by José L. Balcázar and Lluís Corominas (PI of Subproject #1), Carles Borrego, Anna Pico and Lluís Bosch from ICRA; Sergi Díez and Pablo Gago Ferrero (PI of Subproject #2) of the IDAEA-CSIC; and Angi Vilà and Alba Tarrés from Dipsalut, who presented their contribution to the various tasks and decided various coordination issues regarding sampling campaigns and task distribution for the first year of the project.

EXPOWASTE aims to provide a comprehensive picture of exposure to harmful chemicals and life-threatening antibiotic-resistant pathogens by combining human biomonitoring (HBM) and wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE) at both scale local as well as regional. Given this, both subprojects will be based on a cross-sectional cohort of individuals with different socioeconomic statuses and will combine the analysis of chemical and biological markers in human and wastewater samples. The results of this research are expected to provide a valuable and timely surveillance tool to public health and water agencies charged with coordinating and implementing health policies and initiatives.