Saturday, January 17, 2009

Wood Dust - Another high exposure carcinogen not regulated hardly by anyone.

Mutagenesis 2009 24(1):59-65; doi:10.1093/mutage/gen053
Genetic damage in wood dust-exposed workers
P. V. Rekhadevi, M. Mahboob, M. F. Rahman and Paramjit Grover*
Toxicology Unit, Biology Division, Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, Hyderabad 500 607, Andhra Pradesh, India

Exposure to wood dust is common in carpentry workshops. Wood dust is known to be a human carcinogen, with a very high relative risk of adenocarcinoma of the nasal cavities and paranasal sinuses. The goal of this investigation was to conduct genotoxicity monitoring of carpenters involved in wooden furniture industry in order to test possible wood dust-induced genotoxic effects due to occupational exposure. The level of genetic damage was determined by comet, micronucleus and chromosomal aberration (CA) assays in peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBL) of 60 carpentry workers. In addition, the micronucleus test in buccal epithelial cells was carried out in the same subjects. Total antioxidant enzyme activities were measured by the indices: superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase and catalase. A group of 60 non-exposed subjects matched by age, smoking and alcohol consumption habits were chosen as controls. The effect of age, smoking, alcohol consumption and duration of exposure was also analysed in the subjects of the present study. The results showed a statistically significant increase in mean DNA damage by comet assay, micronuclei frequency in buccal cells as well as PBL and frequency of CA in the exposed workers when compared to controls
BrooklynDodger(s) comment: The two known human carcinogens with broad exposure most ignored by public health agencies are wood dust and sulfuric acid.

This study found genetic damage, including damage in circulating lymphocytes, indicating some penetration into the body. Unfortunately, there were no exposure levels cited.

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