Anders Glynn

Anders Glynn
Professor in toxicology


I started my career as a zoologist and ecotoxicologist, with a PhD thesis dealing with mechanisms of cadmium and zinc passage through the fish gill. For over 25 years I then worked as toxicologist/risk assessor/head of department at the Swedish National Food Agency, combining research and risk assessment with a focus on organohalogen contaminants and heavy metals in food and drinking water. Since 2018 I am professor in toxicology at BVF, SLU. Link to the installation presentation.

The current research focus covers 4 main areas:

·       Research on human exposure to chemicals/elements in food and drinking


·       Possible health effects of such exposure.

·       Health risk ranking of chemicals.

·       Transfer of PFAS from soil/feed/water to food producing animals.


Drinking water as a source of human exposure to highly fluorinated compounds (PFASs)

Over 100 000 chemicals are in production in the world and production will increase further in the future. Little or nothing is known about human exposure to the majority of these chemicals. Assessment of human exposure to “new chemicals” gives data that are fundamental for determining if these chemicals are health risks or not. We currently use biomonitoring, i.e. measurements of chemical concentration in human tissues, to determine human exposure to poly- and perfluorinated alkyl substances (PFASs) and to determine the importance of drinking water exposure. We are, in collaboration with the universities in Gothenburg, Lund, Stockholm and Uppsala, the Swedish National Food Agency and the Swedish EPA, developing toxicokinetic models for estimating PFAS exposure of infants, children and adults from drinking water, with the aim to decrease the need for costly biomonitoring of PFAS in populations exposed to PFAS-contaminated drinking water. Toxicokinetic models for determining blood PFAS levels, based on for instance drinking water concentrations of PFAS and time of residence in affected households, can be an efficient and non-invasive method for exposure assessment of drinking water PFAS. The estimated blood levels can be used in risk assessment of the drinking water contamination without the need of blood sampling and chemical analyses.


Early life exposure to persistent halogenated and health effects in children/adolescents – POPUP cohort

Exposure research on persistent organic pollutants (POPs), such as dioxins, PCBs, brominated flame retardants (PBDEs), and PFASs, is crucial for risk assessment of human POP exposure from food and drinking water. In collaboration with the Swedish National Food Agency we are using the POPUP cohort (Persistent Organic Pollutants in Uppsala Primiparas) to investigate temporal trends of POP levels pregnant and nursing women in Sweden, to identify sources of exposure, and to determine how diet/life style/demography/medical factors influence maternal POP levels. Since maternal POP levels are excellent markers of child POP exposure early in life, we can also investigate relations between prenatal/postnatal POP exposure and child health, including birth outcomes, child growth, thyroid function, immune system function, etc.


Combination effects of toxic chemical compounds and elements on child/adolescent health - an integrated epidemiological and bioactivity testing approach (CETCHAA)

This project is a collaboration between SLU, the Swedish National Food Agency, and the universities in Gothenburg, Lund, Stockholm and Uppsala. The overall aim is to characterize chemical compound/element (chemical) mixture exposure of children and adolescents in Sweden, and to elucidate if these mixtures affect child/adolescent health development. The project fills an important knowledge-gap about chemical mixture exposure and possible combination effects. As pointed out in the Swedish Environmental Objective “A non-toxic Environment” the knowledge about how chemicals affect human health is still limited, and a better understanding of the hazardous properties of chemicals are needed as a scientific base for prevention of chemical risks. Our project focus on early life/childhood/adolescence mixture exposures and child/adolescent health development, since these life-stages are especially sensitive to toxic effects of chemicals. The project uses already collected data, and biobanked samples, from a nation-wide food consumption survey, Riksmaten Ungdom (RMU) 2016-17, and a mother/child cohort (POPUP), administrated by the Swedish National Food Agency. In collaboration with Johan Lundqvist at BVF, SLU, we use newly developed bioassays for important toxicity pathways to integrate epidemiological and bioassay approaches in the search for chemical combination effects threatening child/adolescent health.

Risk ranking of chemicals in drinking water - the Risktermometer

This project is a collaboration between SLU, The Swedish Food Agency and two drinking water producers that delivers drinking water to hundreds of thousand consumers. The overall aim is to test if the risk ranking tool, Risktermometern, developed by the Food Agency, can be used as a prioritization tool for the drinking water producers when developing new water treatment techniques for chemicals in drinking water.

Transfer of PFAS from soil/water and feed to food-producing animals on farms in PFAS polluted areas (PFRIME)

In collaboration with Karolinska Institutet and the Swedish Food Agency, PFAS is screened in food producing animals from farms in PFAS polluted areas of Sweden. The aim is to get a first look at the possibility of very high PFAS levels in foods of animal origin, above the EU maximum limits, when produced close to PFAS hotspots. Moreover, the project aims to develop models for predicting PFAS transfer from soil/water/feed to the food producing animals, as a support for risk management decisions regarding animal food production in PFAS polluted areas.

Publikationer i urval


Professor vid Institutionen för biomedicin och veterinär folkhälsovetenskap (BVF); Enheten för farmakologi och toxikologi
Telefon: +4618672091
BVF, Avd för farmakologi och toxikologi, Box 7028
Besöksadress: Ulls väg 26, Uppsala