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5th International Congress on Arsenic in the Environment

11 May 2014 08:00 AM - 16 May 2014 05:30 PM
Buenos Aires, Argentina
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On behalf of the organizing committee, we cordially invite you to join the 5th International Congress on Arsenic in the Environment (As2014), to be held in Buenos Aires, Argentina between 11-16 May 2014. The theme of As2014 is "One century of the discovery of arsenicosis in America (1913-2014)", to commemorate 100 years of the discovery of the effects of arsenic in human life in Latin America.

The Congress intends to invite and integrate researchers involved in different study areas in an open forum, and to strengthen relations between academia, industry, research laboratories government agencies and the private sector to share an optimal atmosphere to interchange knowledge, discoveries and discussions about the problem of arsenic in the environment.

Arsenic has been an issue of concern in last decades because of the serious incidence on human health coming from ingestion of water with small amounts of arsenic for prolonged periods.

The presence of the element in water intended for drinking has caused the spread of arsenicosis (known as HACRE, hidroarsenicismo crónico regional endémico in Spanish), a set of signs and symptoms manifested mainly by dermatological disorders, such as melanodermia, leucodermia and/or palmoplantar keratoderma, which may evolve into more serious pathologies, such as different types of cancer. The affected populations usually live in countries with low-income levels, and the disease largely affects dispersed rural and periurban populations. Around 100 million people are at risk in Asia and it is estimated that in Latin America the population at risk exceeds 14 million people, with high incidence in Argentina (about 4 million people), Chile, El Salvador, Mexico, Nicaragua and Peru. In the rest of the world, the most affected countries are India, China and Bangladesh, although the presence of arsenic in groundwater has been also found in some European countries and in the United States.

Since 2006, four events of International Congress on "Arsenic in the Environment" were held in different countries (Mexico, 2006, Spain, 2008, Taiwan, 2010 and Australia, 2012). In the previous 4th International Congress of Arsenic in the Environment (Australia, 2012), Argentina has been elected to host the next Congress. This is consistent with the fact that, in 2014, 100 years of the discovery of HACRE by Dr. Abel Ayerza in the city of Bell Ville, Province of Córdoba, are commemorated. Dr. Ayerza was the first to relate skin disorders with the consumption of groundwater with high concentrations of arsenic. For this reason, the organization of the next 5th International Congress in the Latin American region is considered relevant.

For more information, visit the conference website.