(2-Methoxyethoxy)acetic acid (MEAA), the major urinary metabolite of the deicing agent 2-(2-methoxyethoxy)ethanol (diEGME) added to JP-8 jet fuel, was used to measure exposure to JP-8 in air force personnel at six airbases in the United States. JP-8 is a kerosene based fuel containing over 200 different compounds, including aliphatics, aromatics, benzene, and naphthalene, all of which vary in concentration depending upon the specific batch of JP-8. DiEGME is always present at 0.1 %. Post-shift urine specimens were obtained from personnel who performed fuel tank maintenance and their attendants (high category, n = 98), fuel handlers (moderate category, n = 38) and personnel with no direct JP-8 contact (low category, n = 61). Urine containing a deuterated (2-butoxy)acetic acid internal standard was extracted with ethyl acetate, followed by esterification to the ethyl ester. The ethyl ester was extracted with methylene chloride and concentrated. Quantitation was by a gas chromatograph equipped with a mass spectrometer. The mean urinary MEAA level was significantly greater in the high (6.9, SD = 15.5 µg/ml) category, as compared to the means of the moderate (0.4, SD = 0.9 µg/ml, p = 0.0024) and low (0.1, SD = 0.02 µg/ml, p= 0.0002) categories. The maximum concentrations of urinary MEAA were 110.0 µg/ml, 4.8 µg/ml, and 0.2 µg/ml and the percent of measurements below the limit of detection (0.1 ug/ml) were 6%, 67%, and 97% for the high, moderate, and low categories, respectively. This study demonstrated that urinary MEAA can be used a biomarker of exposure to JP-8.
The Toxicologist. Society of Toxicology 46th Annual Meeting and ToxExpo, March 25-29, 2007, Charlotte, North Carolina