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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(10), 946; doi:10.3390/ijerph13100946

Relationship between Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether Exposure and Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: A Cross-Sectional Study among Petrol Station Attendants in Southern China

1
Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Tropical Disease Research, Department of Environmental Health, School of Public Health, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510515, China
2
Department of Occupational Health, Baoan Center for Disease Control and Prevention of Shenzhen, Shenzhen 518100, China
3
Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Tropical Disease Research, Department of Toxicology, School of Public Health, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510515, China
4
South China Institute of Environmental Sciences, Ministry of Environmental Protection, Guangzhou 510655, China
5
Department of Toxicology, Shenzhen Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Shenzhen 518055, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Received: 24 July 2016 / Revised: 7 September 2016 / Accepted: 20 September 2016 / Published: 23 September 2016
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [461 KB, uploaded 23 September 2016]   |  

Abstract

Methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE)—A well known gasoline additive substituting for lead alkyls—causes lipid disorders and liver dysfunctions in animal models. However, whether MTBE exposure is a risk factor for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) remains uncertain. We evaluate the possible relationship between MTBE exposure and the prevalence of NAFLD among 71 petrol station attendants in southern China. The personal exposure concentrations of MTBE were analyzed by Head Space Solid Phase Microextraction GC/MS. NAFLD was diagnosed by using abdominal ultrasonography according to the guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of NAFLD suggested by the Chinese Hepatology Association. Demographic and clinical characteristics potentially associated with NAFLD were investigated. Mutivariate logistic regression analysis was applied to measure odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals (CI). The result showed that the total prevalence of NAFLD was 15.49% (11/71) among the study subjects. The average exposure concentrations of MTBE were 292.98 ± 154.90 μg/m3 and 286.64 ± 122.28 μg/m3 in NAFLD and non-NAFLD groups, respectively, and there was no statistically significant difference between them (p > 0.05). After adjusting for age, gender, physical exercise, body mass index (BMI), systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), white blood cell (WBC), total cholesterol (TC), triglycerides (TG), low-density lipoprotein (LDL), and high-density lipoprotein (HDL), the odds ratios were 1.31 (95% CI: 0.85–1.54; p > 0.05), 1.14 (95% CI: 0.81–1.32; p > 0.05), 1.52 (95% CI: 0.93–1.61; p > 0.05) in the groups (including men and women) with exposure concentrations of MTBE of 100–200 μg/m3, 200–300 μg/m3, and ≥300 μg/m3, respectively, as compared to the group (including men and women) ≤100 μg/m3. Our investigation indicates that exposure to MTBE does not seem to be a significant risk factor for the prevalence of NAFLD among petrol station attendants in southern China. View Full-Text
Keywords: methyl tertiary butyl ether; environmental pollution; non-alcoholic fatty liver disease; epidemiology methyl tertiary butyl ether; environmental pollution; non-alcoholic fatty liver disease; epidemiology
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MDPI and ACS Style

Yang, J.; Wei, Q.; Peng, X.; Peng, X.; Yuan, J.; Hu, D. Relationship between Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether Exposure and Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: A Cross-Sectional Study among Petrol Station Attendants in Southern China. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 946.

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