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Earth Materials and Human Health

Task 1—Chemical, mineralogical, and isotopic characterization of rocks and mineral deposits containing asbestiform, fibrous, and other potentially hazardous minerals

Task Chief: Greg Meeker

This task provided important details on the occurrence, mineralogy, and chemistry of trace and accessory asbestiform minerals from a spectrum of geologic environments. This task focused on three main areas of research:

  1. Develop a compendium of geologic environments in which asbestiform and acicular minerals occur, understand the spatial distribution of asbestos occurrences in a geologic context, and work with epidemiologists and public health specialists to understand potential geographic/occupational/environmental links between disease and asbestos occurrence.
  2. Characterize the mineralogy, chemical composition, and morphology of asbestiform or acicular minerals, and their associated minerals, which have formed in different geologic environments.
  3. Provide geologically, chemically, and mineralogically well-characterized asbestiform and acicular mineral samples to other project tasks and outside collaborators, which will analyze the geochemical reactivity and cell line toxicity of the samples and compare the results to similar results obtained for asbestos toxicological standards.

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Mineral Resources Program
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