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Learn about the HBM4EU Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM)

HBM4EU has responded to the first urgent request for information for Copper under Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM).

In October 2018, DG Health and Food Safety submitted to HBM4EU an urgent request for information related to Cu compounds as active substances for plant protection products (PPP) via the online Rapid Response Mechanism form. Consortium successfully mobilised and analysed 35 data collections of 13 different countries across Europe, collected from HBM4EU National Hubs or directly from data owners.


Results of HBM4EU

The results come from all of Europe regions including 16 countries from Western Europe, 13 from Southern Europe, 5 from Northern Europe and 1 from Eastern Europe.

According to the provided HBM data the exposure of general population was similar in different countries. Higher levels of copper were identified in very young children who had higher blood Cu levels than new-borns. Women also tend to have higher levels. This can be explained by the fact that blood Cu values are significantly increased by pregnancy, as also by Cu-containing intrauterine contraceptives and post-menopausal hormone therapy.

Higher Cu values were also identified in occupationally exposed workers when compared with the general population. However, this assumption relied on only two datasets and little information is available regarding the type of activities the occupationally exposed volunteers had.


About Rapid Response Mechanism

The HBM4EU Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM) allows policy makers at national and European levels to submit requests for specific information to the HBM4EU Consortium. RRM responds to new and urgent needs for information in the EU policy community and at national level regarding human exposure to chemicals.

Click here to read the Research Brief.

More information on Rapid Response Mechanism.


The HBM4EU project was launched in 2016 with the aim of improving the collective understanding of human exposure to hazardous chemicals and developing HBM as an exposure assessment method. The project had €74m in funding and jointly implemented by 120 partners from 28 participating countries – 24 EU member states plus Norway, Switzerland, Iceland and Israel and the European Environment Agency. One of its aims was to ensure the sustainability of HBM in the EU beyond 2021. The project ended in June 2022. The website will not be updated any longer, except the page on peer reviewed publications, but will be online until 2032.