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Toxicol Lett. 1996 Jul;86(1):27-37.

Biomonitoring of diesel exhaust-exposed workers. DNA and hemoglobin adducts and urinary 1-hydroxypyrene as markers of exposure.

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Department of Environmental and Occupational Medicine, Steno Center of Public Health, University of Aarhus, Denmark.


Diesel exhaust-exposed workers have been shown to have an increased risk of lung cancer. A battery of biomarkers were evaluated for their ability to assess differences in exposure to genotoxic compounds in bus garage workers and mechanics and controls. Lymphocyte DNA adducts were analyzed using the 32P-postlabelling method with butanol and P1 enrichment procedures. Hydroxyethylvaline (HOEtVal) adducts in hemoglobin were measured by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and 1-hydroxypyrene (HPU) in urine determined using HPLC analysis. The exposed workers had significantly higher levels of all three biomarkers compared to the controls. Total DNA adduct levels were 0.84 fmol/micrograms DNA vs 0.26 in controls (butanol) and 0.65 fmol/micrograms DNA vs. 0.08 (P1 nuclease). Median HOEtVal adduct level in exposed workers was 33.3 pmol/g hemoglobin vs. 22.1 in controls. HOEtVal adducts correlated with HPU but not with DNA adducts. The levels of HPU in urine were 0.11 micromol/mol creatinine compared to 0.05 in controls. All three assays applied were sensitive enough to evaluate a low level of exposure to environmental pollutants, with postlabelling and GC-MS as the most sensitive assays. The study indicated that skin absorption of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) might be an important factor to consider when studying PAH exposure from air pollution sources.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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