This study investigated antimony exposure among employees in industries in Taiwan and evaluated whether their immunologic markers were associated with antimony exposure. We recruited 91 male workers and 42 male office administrators from 2 glass manufacturing plants, 1 antimony trioxide manufacturing plants, and 2 engineering plastic manufacturing plants. Air samples were collected at worksites and administrative offices, and each participant provided specimens of urine, blood, and hair to assay antimony levels. We also determined white blood cells, lymphocyte, and monocyte, IgA, IgE, and IgG in blood specimens. The mean antimony concentration in the air measured at worksites was much higher in the antimony trioxide plant (2.51 ± 0.57 mg/m3
) than in plastic plants (0.21 ± 0.06 mg/m3
) and glass plants (0.14 ± 0.01 mg/m3
). Antimony levels in blood, urine, and hair measured for participants were correlated with worksites and were higher in workers than in administrators. The mean serum IgG, IgA, and IgE levels were lower in workers than in administrators (p
< 0.001). Serum IgA and IgE levels in participants were negatively associated with antimony levels in air samples of workplaces, and in blood, urine, and hairs of participants. Serum IgG and IgE of all participants were also negatively associated with antimony levels in their hairs. In conclusion, the antimony exposure is greater for workers employed in the five industrial plants than for administrators. This study suggests serum IgG, IgA, and IgE levels are negatively associated with antimony exposure.
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