Newsletter – February 2014

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February 2014
QuanTEM Chronicle
An Informative Newsletter for Environmental Professionals
In This Issue
Fighting cancer caused by asbestos
Replicating anti-staph success
Metal firm owner sentenced for lead exposure
The children who played with asbestos
Man takes pill to treat Bell’s Palsy, gets lead poisoning
Barbara’s Corner

Be All That You Can Be!This Army phrase has been playing in my head all month because I have been working on a new customer service survey for our clients.Tell us how we are doing and what we can improve to be everything you need us to be.Just go to your quantem.com ‘Client Login’ or click here to answer a few quick questions and we’ll send you a QuanTEM Gift Pack for helping us better serve you.
Call Me: 1-800-822-1650
Mold Investigator Training Course Spring 2014
April 9-11, 2014
Metro Technology Centers
Springlake Campus
1900 Springlake Drive
Oklahoma City, OK 73111
  • Indoor Air Quality & Mold
  • Mold 101
  • Investigation Strategies
  • Data Interpretation
  • Report Writing
  • Remediation Considerations
  • Current Industry Trends
  • Industry Guidelines
  • Effects of Exposure
  • Sampling Techniques and Strategies
  • Case Studies & Activities
  • Communication Skills & More

Contact Jim Humphrey to Register

Or Call: 800-822-1650
Asbestos Spotlight

Amosite

Often referred to as brown asbestos, Amosite is a trade name for the amphiboles belonging to the cummingtonitegrunerite solid solution series, commonly from South Africa, named as an acronym for “Asbestos Mines of South Africa”.

One formula given for amosite is Fe7Si8O22(OH)2. Amosite is seen under a microscope as a grey-white vitreous fiber. It is found most frequently as a fire retardant in thermal insulation products, asbestos insulating board and ceiling tiles.

Amosite is in the amphibole group of Asbestos and was banned  in much of the Western world by the mid-1980s, and in Japan by 1995.

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Back before we knew about pesky things like mesothelioma and other deadly cancers caused by asbestos fibers, advertisers loved to tout the advantages of this toxic material. Read More
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John’s View
John Barnett, President
John Barnett, President of QuanTEM Labs

The Winter Olympics are going on and I’ll bet almost everyone reading this has watched at least some of the competitions. Here are the best athletes from all over the world. They’ve spent hundreds of hours honing their skills to get where they are. They put their talents on display in front of the entire world and as good as they are they still slip up and crash on occasion.

Imagine a figure skater who falls while doing some super-hard jump. What can they do but get up and finish their routine with a smile knowing that even after all the work they’ve invested they have blown their chance at a medal. Now they must put that fall behind them and go back to prepare for the next event.

I’m not sure that any of us work as hard at developing the excellence in our chosen fields as these athletes do, but we’ve learned that the more work we put in, the better we are at what we do. Even so, we also get knocked down on occasion. So what do we do when this happens? We get up and get back in the race.

When life gets tough maybe we can remember that figure skater, who falls in front of hundreds of cameras and millions of viewers, and we can get back up and move forward with a smile.

Have a great day,

John Barnett

Fighting cancer caused by asbestos: one step closer?

By Sbarro Health Research Organization (SHRO), http://www.shro.org

Mesothelioma is a very aggressive cancer associated with asbestos exposure, which is usually diagnosed in an advanced stage. So far no therapeutic strategy has proven effective against this deadly cancer and the prognosis remains very poor with only few exceptions.

In December, the research team of Antonio Giordano, an internationally renowned pathologist, Director and Founder of the Sbarro Health Research Organization in Philadelphia, PA (http://www.shro.org) and Professor of Pathology and Oncology at the University of Siena, Italy, published two separate studies aiming to address the urgent need to identify possible new methods for mesothelioma treatment. Read More

Replicating anti-staph success in more NCAA locker rooms
By Neutra Corp, http://www.heraldonline.comEarlier this month, S2O2 acquired Zero-Blast, a Texas-based company that specializes in advanced, anti-microbial coatings for germ-infested environments such as college sports locker rooms. Its top product, Armor-Blast, is a polymerized organosilane that bonds to surfaces and forms a barrier that kills germs, microbes and pathogens on contact. The safe, non-toxic coating needs only to be applied four times a year in order to provide 24/7 protection from staph, MRSA, e. coli, H1N1, black mold, athlete’s foot and more.Zero-Blast has been working with TCU for four years, beginning with the sanitization of the school’s football facilities and equipment. The Armor-Blast treatment worked so well that Zero-Blast was hired to apply the same treatment to basketball, baseball, volleyball and soccer facilities, as well, including indoor field turf.”TCU has been the perfect test case for this technology,” said NTRR CEO Sydney Jim. “Our company, along with our partners, has been in contact with numerous colleges around the country interested in replicating TCU’s success in battling dangerous infections.”Read More

Metal firm owner sentenced for lead exposure failures
By Regional News Network, http://press.hse.gov.ukThe owner of a Nottinghamshire alloy firm has been sentenced for failing to protect workers from the risks of lead poisoning after three employees became seriously ill.A subsequent investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found conditions at the company were so bad that a Prohibition Notice was served halting all work with immediate effect.Nottingham Crown Court heard today (4 February) that extraction systems, personal protective equipment, respiratory protection, hygiene and rest facilities were all unsatisfactory, and that no air monitoring or medical surveillance was provided.HSE also established that lunch breaks were taken in an old, lead-contaminated caravan with no running water. Water was collected in contaminated plastic milk cartons from a contaminated hand washing area in the workshop. Clothes worn for work were not removed before eating and drinking and there was no toilet facility at the factory.Staff had not been told about the effects of lead or how to recognize the symptoms of over-exposure. Read More

The children who played with asbestos
By Francesca Williams, BBC NewsIt is the late 1960s and a little girl is playing hopscotch on a grid she has marked out – not with chalk, but a lump of asbestos.Forty-five years later she will be contemplating the cancerous mesothelioma in her lungs which is “growing out like a fungus”.”I was doomed from then,” Caroline Wilcock says. “There was nothing I could have done between then and now to make a difference. I’m pleased I didn’t know it.”She was one of many children in Bowburn who, between 1967 and 1983, played with asbestos from the factory opposite her house.

Its parent company, Cape Intermediate Holdings, is paying her a “substantial” out-of-court settlement, although it has denied liability for her illness.

Caroline describes a white, chalky film of asbestos dust on “the grass, the flowers and the bushes”. It also settled on window ledges. Read More

Man takes pill to treat Bell’s Palsy, gets lead poisoning instead
By Philip Ross, http://www.ibtimes.com

A man in Switzerland was discovered to have suffered from lead poisoning after ingesting pills that he thought contained the hair of a dead Bhutanese priest. The man, originally from the country of Bhutan — whose state religion is Vajrayana Buddhism — thought the alternative medicine would treat his Bell’s palsy.

According to a case report published in F1000 Research in 2011, the Swiss man was admitted to the emergency room in Geneva with severe abdominal pain. He had experienced bouts of nausea and vomiting for five days. Doctors performed all the routine tests, but couldn’t identify what the problem was. According to Live Science, when the patient’s symptoms didn’t let up after a few days, doctors asked him if he was taking any traditional remedies. That’s when the man confessed to ingesting unmarked pellets every day for three to four months in an effort to treat his Bell’s palsy.

Doctors performed a series of blood and urine tests and found high-levels of lead in the patient’s system. His blood contained 80.8 micrograms per deciliter of lead, over eight times what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers a “level of concern.” The man’s stomach symptoms were deemed to be the result of lead poisoning.

Lab tests proved the paint used to color the pills was indeed full of lead. Read More

QuanTEM Chronicle Newsletter
Produced & Edited by
Joanna Mueller, Social Media Director

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Disclaimer:

Any publication included in this News Letter and/or opinions expressed therein do not necessarily reflect the views of QuanTEM Laboratories, LLC but remain solely those of the author(s). Such publications have been included only for ease of reference and academic purposes.

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