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Organic Analytical Toxicology Branch

The Organic Analytical Toxicology (OAT) Branch develops analytical methods to measure synthetic and naturally occurring organic environmental chemicals in people. Among the many chemicals measured are dioxins; polybrominated biphenyl ethers; polychlorinated biphenyls; polyfluorinated alkyls; environmental phenols; PAHs, phthalates; and pesticides, including herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides. Branch scientists measure these chemicals or their metabolites in human samples (e.g., urine, blood, serum, breast milk, and meconium). For many of these chemicals, OAT produces data on population-based exposure levels segmented by age, sex, and race or ethnicity and publishes this information in CDC's National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals.

OAT has 69 staff members, including 18 people with Ph.D.s, 15 people with M.S. degrees, and 36 people with B.S. or other degrees.

Did You Know?

  • Because of the Branch's highly advanced mass spectrometry instrumentation, many of these compounds can be measured in the parts-per-trillion range. To put this figure in perspective, one part per trillion is considered equivalent to one second in 32,000 years.

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  • Page last reviewed: April 25, 2012
  • Page last updated: April 25, 2012 The U.S. Government's Official Web PortalDepartment of Health and Human Services
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