Newsletter – September 2013

QuanTEM Laboratories
September 2013
QuanTEM Chronicle
An Informative Newsletter for Environmental Professionals
In This Issue
Efforts to stop lead poisoning could be at risk
Schizophrenia drug recalled due to mold
Temple City disposes of more than 700 public documents due to asbestos contamination
Lead levels an issue for backyard chickens, soil
New technology tool to help in asbestos battle
Upton library gears up to fight mold

Barbara’s Corner Barbara Holder, Customer Service Manager

I would like to take a few minutes to go over a few do’s and don’ts to ensure we are able to process your samples as efficiently as possible.



*Use staples on COC’s, sample bags, or shipping bags


*Put the COC in the bag with the sample


*Put the sample directly in the shipping package

(it should be in an airtight sample bag to avoid contamination)


*Completely fill out your Chain of Custody (company name, contact info, analysis needed, TAT, sample ID’s)


*Call ahead for Saturday analysis

(Use a FedEx courier with OKC FedEx address and mark ‘Hold for Saturday pick-up’)


*Call and let us know if you are sending large projects


Call Me: 1-800-822-1650

Mold of the Month

Aspergillus sydowii

Photo available at:

A saprophytic fungus found in soil that can contaminate food and is occasionally pathogenic to humans. It is the predominant fungus found on wheat Qu, the most widely used source of raw microorganisms and crude enzymes for Chinese rice wine brewing.

Since the 1990s it has been found to be present in sea water in the Caribbean region and has been shown to be the cause of aspergillosis in sea fans.

When grown in pure culture on agar plates, A. sydowii produces blue-green colonies with reddish-brown shades.

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QuanTEM Labs is now accreditated in Colorado

We’re looking forward to serving our Colorado customers.

If you’d like more information or to set up an account with us please contact us at 1-800-822-1650.

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

Did you find this newsletter helpful? Have any suggestions or comments?
Email me here.

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.

John’s Rant
‘Brevity is the soul of wit’

John Barnett, President
John Barnett, President

I’m fairly level headed but occasionally some things do irritate me. One such irritant which has really been getting under my skin is when so-called “professionals” waste a lot of time talking about nothing.


Case in point, look at some of the discussions taking place on LinkedIn. These arguments are somewhat bizarre in my way of thinking. It all seems to boil down to a battle of egos rather than useful discussion.


My point this month is, if you don’t have something to say that’s of value to the reader/listener then shut up and move on. With this in mind, have a great day and may the 4th quarter be a success for us all.



John E. Barnett


QuanTEM Laboratories

Efforts to stop lead poisoning could be at risk

By Liz Szabo,

Pediatricians and public-health advocates are working to revive programs to protect children from lead poisoning, after what they describe as a series of devastating blows to their efforts.


Congress all but eliminated federal funding to prevent lead poisoning in 2012, cutting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s lead budget by more than 90%. There is no safe level of lead, the CDC estimates that 535,000 American kids have enough lead in their blood to put them at high risk for lead poisoning, which causes intellectual impairments and behavioral problems.


Although lead is no longer used in gasoline or paint, many children are still exposed by living in old housing with peeling paint. USA TODAY also has documented the hazards to children from shuttered lead smelting factories, which left layers of lead in backyards and playgrounds across the USA.


“It’s like they’re declaring victory in a war that has not been won,” says Jerome Paulson, a professor at the George Washington University School of Medicine, who chairs the American Academy of Pediatrics’ committee on environmental health. Read More

Schizophrenia drug recalled due to mold

By Sakthi Prasad & Jeremy Laurence,

Johnson & Johnson is voluntarily recalling one lot of schizophrenia drug Risperdal Consta after discovering mold during a routine testing process, a company spokeswoman said, the latest in a string of recalls over the past two years.


Risperdal Consta is manufactured by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a unit of Johnson & Johnson. The company is recalling the drug from wholesalers, distributors, pharmacies and healthcare providers.


The medicine is a long-acting form of J&J’s Risperdal anti-psychotic medication, and is used to treat bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. It is injected, unlike basic Risperdal, which is a pill.


“We estimate that fewer than 5,000 dose packs remain in the market considering our current inventory levels and the usage of this product,” spokeswoman Robyn Reed Frenze said in an email to Reuters. A single lot of Risperdal Consta consists about 70,000 dosage packs.


Frenze said that the risk to patients is considered low, and “there have been no trends of adverse events of infection associated with this lot”. Read More 

Temple City disposes of more than 700 public documents due to asbestos contamination

By Zen Vuong,

The City Council passed a resolution Tuesday declaring seven filing cabinets’ worth of public records “toxic” and had a contractor dispose of the infected files on Wednesday.

The documents were contaminated with asbestos dust or friable asbestos, so safety was a concern, said City Attorney Eric Vail.

“Because paper is porous, there’s no way to save the paper, and they essentially become toxic,” Vail said. “You’d have to have someone in a hazardous material suit scanning the documents (if you want to preserve them). It’s very costly and it’s also very dangerous.”


City staff provided the public with a 36-page list of 759 documents that Alliance Environmental Group, an asbestos removal service, removed from the city’s premises on Wednesday. Documents are listed in categories such as permits, agreements (with companies), city charter, legal and conflict of interest.


The list includes “original certificate from Secretary of State declaring incorporation of the City of Temple City” and “Sunnyslope Water Company versus City of Temple City,” which is categorized under “legal.” Read More 

Lead levels an issue for backyard chickens, soil

By Mary Flaherty,

Photo: Will Merydith
Last month a local veterinarian had a Berkeley client bring in a very sick chicken.


“It was almost dead,” said Dr. Lee Prutton, of the Abbey Pet Hospital in El Cerrito. Prutton said he put the chicken to sleep and, wondering if it had a contagious disease, sent the body to the state lab for testing. The results: heavy metal poisoning, mainly lead. The vet is now concerned that people are raising chickens in lead-contaminated urban soils, unaware that the lead can enter the chickens’ eggs that we eat.


Lead poisoning can cause brain damage, miscarriage, high blood pressure and learning and behavior problems, and is especially problematic for growing children, according to the Alameda County Healthy Homes Department.


Last October, the New York Times reported that “…a New York State Health Department study show(ed) that more than half the eggs tested from chickens kept in community gardens in Brooklyn, the Bronx and Queens had detectable levels of lead, unlike store-bought counterparts.”


A study in the 2003 Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation confirms the transmission of lead from a chicken to its eggs.  According to ‘Lead Contamination of Chicken Eggs and Tissues from a Small Farm Flock,’ “The data show a strong positive correlation between (chickens’) blood lead and the concentration of lead in the yolk of eggs… Eggs and chicken tissues containing significant concentrations of lead are a potential human health hazard, especially to young children.” Read More

New technology tool to help in asbestos battle

By Peter Dinham,

An Australian company has developed what it claims is a pioneering technology platform to help achieve the federal government’s agenda to rid the country of asbestos by 2030.

The company – Octfolio – has just launched its new Asbestos Information Management Software and website – – which it says is designed to aid in the battle to save lives against deadly asbestos exposure and estimated to save millions of dollars for asbestos stakeholders.

“Ultimately it’s all about an easier and efficient way to track, assess, remove and dispose of asbestos with a goal to saving lives, so we’ve created the Octfolio system to play a pivotal role in helping the Government achieve that outcome for future generations,” says Darren Anderson, Managing Director for the Octfolio company.

“Octfolio has developed the first and only fully integrated tool that will map, classify, quantify and enable the strategic cost effective removal of asbestos from workplaces and homes. Read More

Upton library gears up to fight mold

By Mike Gleason,

The Upton Town Library is plagued with mold, and officials hope that fixes planned over the next few months will solve the problem.

Library officials were alerted to the problem by bad odors.


“Historically, there has been a problem like this with the library,” Library Trustee Chairman John Robertson Jr. said. “We did feel we eliminated the problems and apparently, over time, we had. It was recently noticed, though, that an odor had returned to the library.”

Read More

MIT Banner Fall 2013

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