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Environ Int. 2009 Nov;35(8):1155-9. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2009.07.010. Epub 2009 Aug 8.

Genotoxic biomonitoring of agricultural workers exposed to pesticides in the north of Sinaloa State, Mexico.

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Departamento de Ciencias Biológicas, Universidad de Occidente, Boulevard Macario Gaxiola y Carretera Internacional, Los Mochis 81223, Sinaloa, Mexico.


Genotoxic damage was evaluated in 70 agricultural workers, 25 women and 45 men, exposed to pesticides in Las Grullas, Ahome, Sinaloa, Mexico, with an average of 7 years of exposure. The effect was detected through the sister chromatid exchanges (SCE) in lymphocytes of peripheral blood and micronuclei (MN) and other nuclear anomalies (NA) in buccal exfoliated cells. Also, the influence on cellular proliferation kinetics (CPK) was studied by means of the replication index (RI) and the cytotoxic effect was examined with the mitotic index (MI). The non-exposed group consisted of 70 other persons, 21 women and 47 men from the city of Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico. Significant differences between the exposed and the non-exposed groups were observed in SCE, CPK, MI, MN and NA. Analysis of variance revealed that age, gender, smoking and alcohol consumption did not have a significant effect on genetic damage. However, there was a correlation between exposure time to pesticides and SCE frequency. These results could have been due to the exposure of workers to pesticides containing different chemical compounds. This study afforded valuable data to estimate the possible risk to health associated with pesticide exposure.

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