Asian/Pacific Islander Community Exposures (ACE) Project - ACE 2

Study of metals and perfluoroalkyl and polyfluroalkyl substances in Asian/Pacific Islander adults living in the San Francisco Bay area

A mulit-generational family of Asian-Americans sharing a meal

The Asian/Pacific Islander Community Exposures (ACE) Project is measuring levels of selected metals (arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury) in urine and/or blood, and levels of perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) in serum.  For ACE 1, the first phase of the project, we recruited Chinese adult participants who had lived in the San Francisco Bay area for at least one year. For the second phase, ACE 2, we recruited Vietnamese adult participants. We hope to conduct additional phases of the ACE Project to include other Asian/Pacific Islander (API) groups (e.g., Hmong).

The API community appears to have higher levels of certain chemicals, including metals and PFASs, compared to people from other ethnic/racial groups. Factors affecting levels of these chemicals could include dietary preferences, such as regular consumption of fish and rice, and the use of traditional remedies, such as some herbal medicines. Information from the ACE Project will expand our understanding of chemical exposures in the API community, which makes up approximately 14% of the California population.

ACE 2 was conducted in collaboration with the Vietnamese Voluntary Foundation (VIVO), a community-based non-profit organization in San Jose. VIVO’s mission is to empower the underserved through community service, education, leadership, and cultural activities. Founded in 1979, VIVO provides comprehensive acculturation, employment, health, and human support to refugees, immigrants, and low-income ethnic families in Santa Clara and San Joaquin counties. For the ACE Project, staff from VIVO and Biomonitoring California worked together to:

  • Engage with community leaders, including providing information on biomonitoring and how it can support community health
  • Recruit participants
  • Conduct exposure assessment interviews, with bilingual staff as needed
  • Develop language- and culturally appropriate project materials
  • Report laboratory results to individuals

Project Type: 

Full project collaboration

Project Status: 



100 Vietnamese adults living in the San Francisco Bay area

Sample Collection Date: 


Sample Collection Area: 

San Francisco Bay area

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