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Sankt Augustin, Germany

Marczynski B.,Ruhr University Bochum | Raulf-Heimsoth M.,Ruhr University Bochum | Spickenheuer A.,Ruhr University Bochum | Pesch B.,Ruhr University Bochum | And 13 more authors.
Archives of Toxicology | Year: 2011

To study the associations between exposure to vapours and aerosols of bitumen and genotoxic effects, a cross-sectional and cross-shift study was conducted in 320 exposed workers and 118 non-exposed construction workers. Ambient air measurements were carried out to assess external exposure to vapours and aerosols of bitumen. Hydroxylated metabolites of naphthalene, phenanthrene and pyrene were measured in urine, whereas (+)-anti-benzo[a]pyrene-7,8-diol-9, 10-epoxide ((+)-anti-BPDE), 8-oxo-7,8-dihydro-2′-deoxyguanosine (8oxodGuo) and DNA strand breaks were determined in blood. Significantly higher levels of 8-oxodGuo adducts and DNA strand breaks were found in both pre- and post-shift blood samples of exposed workers compared to those of the referents. No differences between exposed workers and referents were observed for (+)-anti-BPDE. Moreover, no positive associations between DNA damage and magnitude of airborne exposure to vapours and aerosols of bitumen could be observed in our study. Additionally, no relevant association between the urinary metabolites of PAH and the DNA damage in blood was observed. Overall, our results indicate increased oxidative DNA damage in workers exposed to vapours and aerosols of bitumen compared to non-exposed referents at the group level. However, increased DNA strand breaks in bitumen workers were still within the range of those found in non-exposed and healthy persons as reported earlier. Due to the lack of an association between oxidative DNA damage and exposure levels at the workplaces under study, the observed increase in genotoxic effects in bitumen workers cannot be attributed to vapours and aerosols of bitumen. © 2011 Springer-Verlag. Source


Spickenheuer A.,Ruhr University Bochum | Ruhl R.,BG BAU | Hober D.,BG BAU | Raulf-Heimsoth M.,Ruhr University Bochum | And 13 more authors.
Archives of Toxicology | Year: 2011

Bitumen (referred to as asphalt in the United States) is a widely used construction material, and emissions from hot bitumen applications have been a long-standing health concern. One objective of the Human Bitumen Study was to identify potential determinants of the exposure to bitumen. The study population analysed comprised 259 male mastic asphalt workers recruited between 2003 and 2008. Personal air sampling in the workers' breathing zone was carried out during the shift to measure exposure to vapours and aerosols of bitumen. The majority of workers were engaged in building construction, where exposure levels were lower than in tunnels but higher than at road construction sites. At building construction sites, exposure levels were influenced by the room size, the processing temperature of the mastic asphalt and the job task. The results show that protective measures should include a reduction in the processing temperature. © 2011 Springer-Verlag. Source

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