Les actualités de l'ESP

Letting the next generation pay for environmental contamination

February 7, 2023

Many environmental chemicals can reach the next generation soon after conception. The placenta does not provide an efficient filter, and the foetus therefore shares the mother’s circulating toxicants. Worse, some of these chemicals are excreted into human milk – an advantage for the mother – but a serious hazard for the new-born baby. During early life, organs are developed, and their functions mature. Thus, developmental exposures are particularly risky. Overall, environmental contamination can cause health risks that may disproportionally affect the next generation – and we are only beginning to realize it.

Séance et leçon inaugurale de la Chaire Francqui "I'm toxic, so don't eat me"

January 30, 2023

En 1963, l'École de Santé Publique de l'ULB est la première à voir le jour dans le monde universitaire belge. Depuis, elle a beaucoup grandi et une série de manifestations tout au long de l’année 2023 témoigneront de son dynamisme. Parmi celles-ci, dans le cadre d’une Chaire Francqui internationale en santé publique, cinq leçons seront animées par le professeur Philippe Grandjean de la University of Southern Denmark dans le domaine de la santé environnementale, ainsi qu’un alléchant programme de conférences organisées par nos Centres de Recherche.

Lessons on PFAS emergence as environmental toxicant

January 10, 2023

The perfluorinated alkylate substances (PFASs) were introduced as industrial chemicals about 1950, with important uses for non-stick kitchen utensils and, with time, many other useful purposes. During the early decades, studies were conducted that suggested possible toxicity, but they were not published and apparently resulted in little prevention. About 2000, previously hidden documentation was released and began to stimulate academic research, but it took may years to explore the toxic properties of these persistent compounds, with focus on the most common PFASs. Agency responses were delayed, and exposure limits have decreased substantially over time. Alternative PFASs have been introduced, but are they as toxic as the legacy compounds? The PFAS history illustrates weaknesses and concerns about our current approach to controlling exposures to toxic substances.

The precautionary principle also applies to science

January 10, 2023

For various reasons, public health science focuses on a limited number of preventable risks related to voluntary and non-voluntary exposures, such as metals. Conclusions are often hedged or understated, and results tend to be descriptive, rather than analytic. Non-significant associations are said to be “negative”, and academic tradition seems to support replication rather than innovation. In contrast, the precautionary principle would emphasize evidence that supports a judgment whether a risk factor may lead to adverse effects that are serious enough to initiate procedures to decide on intervention.

Critical effects in environmental health may not be critical

January 10, 2023

Protection against environmental hazards usually aims at protecting against so-called critical effects that occur at the lowest exposures in a vulnerable population. That assumes the existence of evidence that allows a choice between potential adverse effects. Perhaps one can rely on experimental results, but human data are usually preferred. This is where the main uncertainty occurs, and it is critical.

INSTrUCT Programme - Press release

December 21, 2022

The School of Public Health of the ULB hosted the launch of the INSTrUCT Programme last week in the European Quarter, at Eurocare in Norway House.

Rapports d’analyse de l’épidémie COVID-19

February 9, 2022

Cadre pédagogique sur base du suivi épidémiologique quotidien de l’épidémie en Belgique.

HERA AWARDS FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS 2021 - Fanny Brunin

May 6, 2021

Fanny Brunin, assistante de cours et chercheuse au centre de recherche en santé environnementale et santé du travail de l’ULB, lauréate des Hera awards. La cérémonie finale de remise de l'ensemble des prix aura lieu ce jeudi 29 avril 2021 dès 20h00.

Un meilleur financement aurait-il permis d’éviter la crise sanitaire?

March 11, 2021

Un meilleur financement aurait-il permis d’éviter une presque saturation dans les hôpitaux du pays? Comment repenser le financement des soins de santé? L’organisation en réseau est-elle indispensable? Peut-on agir sur le prix des médicaments ou celui des vaccins? ... Philippe van Wilder, professeur en économie de la santé à l'Ecole de santé publique, participe au débat à la LN24 et répond aux différentes questions.