g. silver in quantum dots); and metals in other technologies (e.g. scandium in solid oxide fuel cells and neodymium in high performance magnets) (Du C59 wnt price and Graedel, 2011). It is necessary to establish baseline background levels so that changes over time can be tracked and to allow an exposure assessment of workers in these industries and those workers involved in the ‘end of product life’ recycling industries. Reference values for many of these elements in the UK population are limited. In 1998 White and Sabbioni, reported reference ranges for thirteen
elements in 200 non-exposed persons in the UK (White and Sabbioni, 1998) and in 2012 reference ranges for seventeen elements analysed in 24 h collections from 111 patients from a renal stones clinic in Southampton (Sieniawska et al., 2012) were reported. In addition,
a CEFIC (European chemical industries association) funded study was reported in 2012 where 436 UK individuals provided urine samples for a range of background analytes to be measured including two metals, mercury and cadmium (Bevan et al., 2012). Several European countries have established human biomonitoring programmes and networks, such as those in Belgium (Schoeters et al., 2012), France (Fréry et al., 2011), Czech Republic (Cerna et al., 2007) and Germany (Schulz et al., 2011 and Schulz et al., 2007). In the U.S., the ‘The National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals’ (NHANES, 2011) provides an on-going assessment of the exposure of the U.S. population to environmental chemicals using biological PD-1 antibody monitoring. Although this is an extensive and informative study the utility of the data is restricted because geographic, industrial and dietary differences exist between the US and the UK and because the NHANES programme only reports levels for thirteen
elements. There have also been several European studies that have looked at reference ranges including a recent Belgian RVX-208 study, where Hoet et al. published a comprehensive list of the reference values for 26 trace elements in urine samples from 1022 adults (Hoet et al., 2013). However, as reference values are known to be influenced by environment, lifestyle factors and may differ from countries/regions and if possible they should be established at a national/regional level (Hoet et al., 2013). The data reported in this paper contribute to valuable information on background levels for a wide range of elements in urine samples from non-occupationally exposed adults. The sample cohort is not representative of the whole UK population but this dataset offers information on current levels for the largest number of elements undertaken in any UK study. This study measured repeat samples from the cohort of non-occupationally exposed people to provide an idea of variation of elemental concentrations both between and within individuals. The samples were analysed using modern analytical techniques and instrumentation with good limits of detection.