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World J Gastroenterol. 2012 Jun 14;18(22):2756-66. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v18.i22.2756.

Toxic hepatitis in occupational exposure to solvents.

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Research Centre "The Great Senescence", University of Catania, 95100 Catania, Italy.


The liver is the main organ responsible for the metabolism of drugs and toxic chemicals, and so is the primary target organ for many organic solvents. Work activities with hepatotoxins exposures are numerous and, moreover, organic solvents are used in various industrial processes. Organic solvents used in different industrial processes may be associated with hepatotoxicity. Several factors contribute to liver toxicity; among these are: species differences, nutritional condition, genetic factors, interaction with medications in use, alcohol abuse and interaction, and age. This review addresses the mechanisms of hepatotoxicity. The main pathogenic mechanisms responsible for functional and organic damage caused by solvents are: inflammation, dysfunction of cytochrome P450, mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress. The health impact of exposure to solvents in the workplace remains an interesting and worrying question for professional health work.


Hepatotoxicity; Hepatotoxin; Inflammation; Occupational disease; Work activity

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