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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(9), 3672-3687; doi:10.3390/ijerph8093672
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Environmental Isocyanate-Induced Asthma: Morphologic and Pathogenetic Aspects of an Increasing Occupational Disease

1,* , 1
, 1
 and 2
Received: 18 July 2011; in revised form: 30 August 2011 / Accepted: 6 September 2011 / Published: 9 September 2011
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Abstract: Occupational diseases affect more and more people every year. According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), in 2000 an estimated amount of at least 160 million people became ill as a result of occupational-related hazards or injuries. Globally, occupational deaths, diseases and injuries account for an estimated loss of 4% of the Gross Domestic Product. Important substances that are related to occupational diseases are isocyanates and their products. These substances, which are used in a lot of different industrial processes, are not only toxic and irritant, but also allergenic. Although the exposure to higher concentrations could be monitored and restricted by technical means, very low concentrations are difficult to monitor and may, over time, lead to allergic reactions in some workers, ending in an occupational disease. In order to prevent the people from sickening, the mechanisms underlying the disease, by patho-physiological and genetical means, have to be known and understood so that high risk groups and early signs in the development of an allergic reaction could be detected before the exposure to isocyanates leads to an occupational disease. Therefore, this paper reviews the so far known facts concerning the patho-physiologic appearance and mechanisms of isocyanate-associated toxic reactions and possible genetic involvement that might trigger the allergic reactions.
Keywords: occupational disease; isocyanate; occupational asthma; pathological findings; clinical findings; genetic predisposition occupational disease; isocyanate; occupational asthma; pathological findings; clinical findings; genetic predisposition
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.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Fisseler-Eckhoff, A.; Bartsch, H.; Zinsky, R.; Schirren, J. Environmental Isocyanate-Induced Asthma: Morphologic and Pathogenetic Aspects of an Increasing Occupational Disease. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8, 3672-3687.

AMA Style

Fisseler-Eckhoff A, Bartsch H, Zinsky R, Schirren J. Environmental Isocyanate-Induced Asthma: Morphologic and Pathogenetic Aspects of an Increasing Occupational Disease. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2011; 8(9):3672-3687.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Fisseler-Eckhoff, Annette; Bartsch, Holger; Zinsky, Rica; Schirren, Joachim. 2011. "Environmental Isocyanate-Induced Asthma: Morphologic and Pathogenetic Aspects of an Increasing Occupational Disease." Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 8, no. 9: 3672-3687.



Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health EISSN 1660-4601 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert