Health Research Methods, Models, Tools, and Databases


  • Virus Methods
    (EPA Manual of Methods for Virology) The manual (EPA 600-4-84-013) describes in detail procedures for detecting viruses in environmental samples. Revised and new chapters include:




  • Community Multi-scale Air Quality (CMAQ) Model
    CMAQ is an air quality model and software suite designed to model multiple pollutants at multiple scales. CMAQ allows regulatory agencies and state governments to evaluate the impact of air quality management decisions, and gives scientists the ability to probe, simulate, and understand chemical and physical interactions in the atmosphere.
  • Fused Air Quality Surfaces using Downscaling
    Based on statistical modeling research in the development of fused space-time predictive surfaces for air quality, this model provides access to the most recent daily O3 and PM2.5 surfaces. As new and improved statistical models become available, we plan to continually update these surfaces.
  • Fused Discrete Air Quality Surfaces
    This model provides access to discrete, daily O3 and PM2.5 predictive surfaces. Here, a space-time hierachical Bayesian model is used to fuse daily ozone (8-hr maximum) monitoring data from the National Air Monitoring Stations/State and Local Air Monitoring Stations (NAMS/SLAMS) with gridded output from the Models-3/Community Multi-Scale Air Quality Model (CMAQ).

Chemical Safety

  • Acute-to-Chronic Estimation (ACE)
    ACE with Time-Concentration-Effect Models software allows prediction of chronic toxicity from acute toxicity datasets. ACE uses linear regression and accelerated life testing to predict no-effect and low-effect concentrations for chronic mortality.
  • Exposure Analysis Modeling System (EXAMS)
    EXAMS is a modeling system that supports development of aquatic ecosystem models for rapid evaluation of the fate, transport, and exposure concentrations of synthetic organic chemicals like pesticides, industrial materials, and leachates from disposal sites. The system is able to generate and summarize data critical for ecological risk assessments. Much of the data required for EXAMS to function has been collected historically. This allows data needs to be met for a certain projects without intensive field sampling.
  • Exposure Related Dose Estimating Model (ERDEM) Search EPA Archive
    ERDEM is a physiologically-based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) model with a graphical user interface. Such a mathematical model was needed to make reliable estimates of the chemical dose to organs of animals or humans because of uncertainties of making route-to route, low-to-high exposure, and species-to-species extrapolations when there are exposures to one, or to multiple chemicals.


  • Dietary Exposure Potential Model (DEPM)
    Dietary models can be used for identifying the importance of diet relative to other exposure pathways and indicating the potential for high exposure of certain populations. Existing consumption and contaminant residue databases, normally developed for purposes such as nutrition and regulatory monitoring, contain information to characterize dietary intake of environmental chemicals. A model and database system, termed the Dietary Exposure Potential Model (DEPM), correlates extant food information in a format for estimating dietary exposure.
  • Framework for Risk Analysis of Multi-Media Environmental Systems (FRAMES)
    FRAMES is a software-based modeling system that takes collections of models and modeling tools and applies them to real world problems. FRAMES facilitates communication between models, supporting the passage of data that helps simulate complex environmental processes. The tool has been used in EPA assessments in support of the Hazardous Waste Identification Rule, which establishes contaminant concentration levels in industrial waste streams that are considered safe for disposal.


  • Physiological and Anatomical Visual Analytics 1.0 (PAVA v1.0)
    PAVA v1.0 generates and animates dosimetry (chemical or biological time-course) data on a human anatomy. PAVA v1.0 requires, as input, the output of a variety of physiologically-annotated data sources, such as experimental (epidemiological, whole-body auto-radiography, tissue-specific protein expression) or modeling-based time-course data (PBPK model output).
  • Stochastic Human Exposure & Dose Simulation Multimedia Model v 3 (SHEDS-Multimedia v3) 
    SHEDS-Multimedia v 3 is a physically-based, probabilistic exposure model for residential exposure scenarios. The model estimates distributions of exposures in human populations and uncertainties in the estimates through a two-stage Monte Carlo approach. Running the application requires the SAS software; it has an optional graphical user interface (GUI). A simple dose estimating model is included in the model, but the exposure results can also be output and used in other dose estimation models such as ERDEM.

Top of Page


  • Children's Exposure Factors Handbook - 2011 edition
    The Exposure Factors Handbook summarizes data on drinking water consumption, inhalation rates, and other factors that influence subject exposure to environmental contaminants. Recommended values are for the general population and also for various segments of the population who may have characteristics different from the general population. EPA has tried to include full discussions of the issues that assessors should consider in deciding how to use these data and recommendations.
  • Community-Focused Exposure and Risk Screening Tool (C-FERST)
    C-FERST is a community mapping, information access, and assessment tool designed to assess risks and assist in decision making within communities
  • Eco-Health Relationship Browser
    The Eco-Health Relationship Browser illustrates the linkages between human health and ecosystem services—benefits supplied by Nature. This interactive tool provides information about our nation's ecosystems, the services they provide, and how those services, or their degradation and loss, may affect people.
  • EnviroAtlas
    EnviroAtlas is an interactive web-based tool that states, communities, and citizens can use to help inform policy and planning decisions that impact the places where people live, learn, work and play. EnviroAtlas combines maps, analysis tools, fact sheets, and downloadable data into an easy-to-use, web-based resource that allows users to understand the implications of various decisions and their potential impacts on ecosystems.
  • Health Impact Assessment
    A Health Impact Assessment (HIA) is a decision-making tool that asks how proposed decisions may impact health and well-being in a community. HIAs consider potential consequences of decisions, include input from people impacted by the decision, consider different types of evidence, and provide timely recommendations to decision-makers. A review was conducted of 81 HIAs from the U.S. to obtain a clear picture of how HIAs are being implemented nationally and to identify potential areas for improving the HIA community of practice.
  • Indoor Semi-Volatile Organic Compound (i-SVOC)
    i-SVOC Version 1.0 is a general-purpose software application for dynamic modeling of the emission, transport, sorption, and distribution of semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs) in indoor environments. i-SVOC supports a variety of uses, including exposure assessment and the evaluation of mitigation options. SVOCs are a diverse group of organic chemicals that can be found in:
    • Pesticides;
    • Ingredients in cleaning agents and personal care products;
    • Additives to vinyl flooring, furniture, clothing, cookware, food packaging, and electronics.
    Many are also present in indoor air, where they tend to bind to interior surfaces and particulate matter (dust).
  • Most Probable Number (MPN) Software Program
    MPN calculates the most probable number and confidence limits values. The MPN Calculator integrates into a single file and replaces the old DOS-based MPN.exe and MPNV.exe programs. Use of the latter was required by Section VIII of the ICR Microbial Laboratory Manual.
  • Multimedia Contaminant Fate, Transport, and Exposure Model (MMSOILS)
    MMSOILS estimates the human exposure and health risk associated with releases of contamination from hazardous waste sites. The methodology consists of a multimedia model that addresses the transport of a chemical in groundwater, surface water, soil erosion, the atmosphere, and accumulation in the food chain. The risk associated with the total exposure dose is calculated based on chemical-specific toxicity data.
  • Supercomputer for Model Uncertainty and Sensitivity Evaluation (SuperMUSE) Search EPA Archive
    SuperMUSE enhances quality assurance in environmental models and applications. With SuperMUSE, EPA can now better investigate new and existing uncertainty analysis (UA) and sensitivity analysis (SA) methods. EPA can also more easily achieve UA/SA of complex, Windows-based environmental models, allowing scientists to conduct analyses that have, to date, been impractical to consider.
  • Simulation Tool Kit for Indoor Air Quality and Inhalation Exposure (IAQX)
    IAQX version 1.1 is an indoor air quality (IAQ) simulation software package that complements and supplements existing indoor air quality simulation (IAQ) programs. IAQX is for advanced users who have experience with exposure estimation, pollution control, risk assessment, and risk management. There are many sources of indoor air pollution, such as building materials, furnishings, and chemical cleaners. Since most people spend a large portion of their time indoors, it is important to be able to estimate exposure to these pollutants. IAQX helps users analyze the impact of pollutant sources and sinks, ventilation, and air cleaners. It performs conventional IAQ simulations to calculate the pollutant concentration and/or personal exposure as a function of time. It can also estimate adequate ventilation rates based on user-provided air quality criteria. This is a unique feature useful for product stewardship and risk management.
  • Tribal-Focused Environmental Risk and Sustainability Tool (T-FERST)
    T-FERST is a community mapping, information access, and assessment tool designed to assess risk and assist in decision making within tribal communities.
  • Virtual Beach (VB)
    VB is a software suite that uses data on beach location, local hydrology, land use, wave height, and weather to create models that can predict bacteria and other waterborne pathogen outbreaks at saltwater and freshwater beaches before they happen.

Top of Page


  • Air Quality Data for the CDC National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network 
    EPA's Exposure Research scientists are collaborating with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on a CDC initiative to build a National Environmental Public Health Tracking (EPHT) network. Working with state, local and federal air pollution and health agencies, the EPHT program is facilitating the collection, integration, analysis, interpretation, and dissemination of data from environmental hazard monitoring, and from human exposure and health effects surveillance. These data provide scientific information to develop surveillance indicators, and to investigate possible relationships between environmental exposures, chronic disease, and other diseases, that can lead to interventions to reduce the burden of theses illnesses. An important part of the initiative is air quality modeling estimates and air quality monitoring data, combined through Bayesian modeling that can be linked with health outcome data.
  • Consolidated Human Activity Database (CHAD)
    CHAD contains data obtained from pre-existing human activity studies that were collected at city, state, and national levels. CHAD is intended to be an input file for exposure/intake dose modeling and/or statistical analysis. CHAD is a master database providing access to other human activity databases using a consistent format.
  • Environmental Geophysics
    The Environmental Geophysics database contains information on geophysical methods, references to geophysical citations, and a glossary of geophysical terms related to environmental applications.
  • ExpoCast Database
    ExpoCast consolidates observational human exposure data and link to ToxRef DB, ACToR and ToxCast DB to help make high throughput exposure predictions.
  • Health & Environmental Research Online (HERO)
    HERO provides access to scientific literature used to support EPA’s integrated science assessments.
  • Human Exposure Database System (HEDS)
    HEDS is an integrated database system that contains chemical measurements, questionnaire responses, documents, and other information related to EPA research studies of the exposure of people to environmental contaminants.
  • PPCP (Reference Databases)
    This is a database of published literature relevant to the issues surrounding PPCPs as environmental contaminants.

Top of Page