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Project: Exposure and skin uptake of cobalt

To understand the mechanisms of uptake of metals through skin, we need to know what levels of metals that are deposited onto the skin. Metal on the skin comes from direct contact with metallic items and materials, or via deposition of particles, solutions and chemicals.

The skin has partly been neglected as an important target for exposure when it comes to chronic disease and allergy; hence little is known about metals on the skin. The aim of the project is to measure exposure sources, skin doses and uptake of cobalt in different occupational settings. The concentration of cobalt on skin will be measured using skin wipes and tape stripping. Using chemical analysis the concentration in the wipes will be studied. Microscopic studies of the tapes will give information on particles on the skin. Urine samples will be collected and analyzed as a measure of uptake of cobalt. The knowledge given by this study can further be used as a basis for future research on metal/skin interactions and uptake of metals through skin.

Collaboration with the Division of Surface and Corrosion Science, KTH.


  • Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare (Forte, former FAS)

Contact person

Anneli Julander