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Clin Toxicol (Phila). 2010 Mar;48(3):184-92. doi: 10.3109/15563651003623297.

Evaluation of plasma, erythrocytes, and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid antioxidant defense system in sulfur mustard-injured patients.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Chemical Injuries Research Center, Janbazan Medical and Engineering Research Center, Faculty of Medicine, Baqiyatallah University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.



Sulfur mustard (SM) is a strong alkylating agent that causes acute and chronic effects on different organs following exposure. Main late respiratory complications are chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, bronchiectasis, asthma, and bronchiolitis obliterans. It seems that oxidative stress plays a major role in pathogenesis of diseases. This study was undertaken to evaluate the long-term effect of SM on plasma, erythrocytes, and brochoalveolar lavage fluid antioxidant defense system in SM-injured patients.


Brochoalveolar lavage fluid, plasma, and erythrocyte samples were taken from 54 patients in the case group exposed to SM and 25 controls with chronic respiratory disease without a history of exposure to SM.


Superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase activities in lavage fluid, plasma, and erythrocytes were significantly higher in case group. The increased glutathione S-transferase activity in lavage fluid was associated with a depletion of glutathione and an increase of malondialdehyde levels. There was no significant change observed in glutathione reductase activity.


The data suggest that oxidative damage might have an important role for patients exposed to SM. SM may induce an oxidative stress response by depleting the antioxidant defense systems and increasing lipid peroxidation in lung cells.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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