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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(7), 8434-8447; doi:10.3390/ijerph120708434

Metabolic Polymorphisms and Clinical Findings Related to Benzene Poisoning Detected in Exposed Brazilian Gas-Station Workers

1
Toxicology Laboratory, Center for Studies of Worker’s Health and Human Ecology, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Rio de Janeiro 21041-210, Brazil
2
Medical Ambulatory, Center for Studies of Worker’s Health and Human Ecology, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Rio de Janeiro 21041-210, Brazil
3
Technical Unit of Occupational Exposure, Environmental and Cancer, Prevention and Surveillance Coordination, National Cancer Institute, Rio de Janeiro 20230-130, Brazil
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Received: 10 June 2015 / Revised: 9 July 2015 / Accepted: 14 July 2015 / Published: 21 July 2015
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Abstract

Benzene is a ubiquitous environmental pollutant and an important industrial chemical present in both gasoline and motor vehicle emissions. Occupational human exposure to benzene occurs in the petrochemical and petroleum refining industries as well as in gas-station workers, where it can lead to benzene poisoning (BP), but the mechanisms of BP are not completely understood. In Brazil, a significant number of gas-station service workers are employed. The aim of the present study was to evaluate alterations related to BP and metabolic polymorphisms in gas-station service workers exposed to benzene in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Occupational exposure was based on clinical findings related to BP, and metabolic polymorphisms in 114 Brazilian gas-station attendants. These workers were divided into No Clinical Findings (NCF) and Clinical Findings (CF) groups. Neutrophil and Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV) showed a significant difference between the two study groups, and neutrophil has the greatest impact on the alterations suggestive of BP. The clinical findings revealed higher frequencies of symptoms in the CF group, although not all members presented statistical significance. The frequencies of alleles related to risk were higher in the CF group for GSTM1, GSTT1, CYP2E1 7632T > A, but lower for NQO1 and CYP2E1 1053C > T genotypes. Moreover, an association was found between GSTM1 null and alterations related to BP, but we did not observe any effects of other polymorphisms. Variations in benzene metabolizing genes may modify benzene toxicity and should be taken into consideration during risk assessment evaluations. View Full-Text
Keywords: occupational health; benzene poisoning; gas station worker; genetic polymorphisms; benzene metabolism occupational health; benzene poisoning; gas station worker; genetic polymorphisms; benzene metabolism
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Mitri, S.; Fonseca, A.S.A.; Otero, U.B.; Tabalipa, M.M.; Moreira, J.C.; Sarcinelli, P.N. Metabolic Polymorphisms and Clinical Findings Related to Benzene Poisoning Detected in Exposed Brazilian Gas-Station Workers. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12, 8434-8447.

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