Schulte-PA; Perera-FP; Rothman-N
Encyclopedia of molecular biology and molecular medicine: denaturation of DNA to growth factors. Meyers RA, ed. Weinheim [u.a.]: VCH Publishers, Inc., 1996 Apr; 2:258-262
The use of molecular biological methods in molecular epidemiology (ME) as a powerful tool for public health researchers was reviewed. ME used the enhanced resolving power of molecular biology to assess exposure/disease relationships. ME identified biological markers that indicated exposure to xenobiotic agents; revealed a biological effect early in the course of disease; or represented unique disease subtypes to the development of disease. ME compared populations with respect to dose of an environmental agent as measured by critical macromolecules, such as DNA. ME used a validated biological marker of effect instead of frank disease outcome. Biological markers intermediate between exposure and disease were used to screen people or allowed for early disease detection. ME discerned the role of host factors, particularly genetics, in accounting for variations in response. In applied studies, the biomarker did not predict an increased risk of disease, but provided insight into the association of exposure and biologic processes. Developmental studies addressed questions about the presence of newly developed markers in the population. The authors conclude that the use of molecular biomarkers in public health practice is still in its infancy, and several promising markers may soon find their way into the public health arena.
Humans; Biological-monitoring; Epidemiology; Molecular-biology; DNA-adducts; DNA-damage; Environmental-exposure; Occupational-exposure; Genetic-disorders
Book or book chapter
Encyclopedia of molecular biology and molecular medicine: denaturation of DNA to growth factors