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Program Description

Occupational immune, infectious, and dermal diseases are some of the most common illnesses that affect workers in the United States. The Immune, Infectious, and Dermal Disease Prevention (IID) Program conducts basic/etiologic research to better understand the impact of occupational exposures to chemical, biological, or infectious agents. New occupational hazards continue to emerge and require characterization to better understand the nature and magnitude of their effects on the body. Therefore it is critical that we understand the biological mechanisms that cause or worsen immune, infectious and dermal diseases. Specific understanding of mechanism allows occupational safety and health professionals to develop appropriate intervention and prevention strategies.

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The program conducts research to:

  • Investigate the contributions of skin exposure to the overall body burden of toxic substances.
  • Improve current skin exposure measurement methods.
  • Better understand the impact of occupational exposures on the immune system.
  • Reduce the incidence of allergic disease in the workplace.
  • Reduce the incidence and transmission of infectious disease in the workplace.

IID works to share its research findings with other researchers, employers, workers, and others interested in occupational safety and health. Skin Notations (SK), hazard warnings used worldwide, alert workers and employers to the health risks of skin exposures to workplace chemicals. Collaborations with NIOSH Sector Programs, contributions to field investigations, and publications and presentations of research findings also contribute to increased awareness.

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