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Pilot study of automotive repair technicians exposures for possible exposure reduction intervention research.

Boeniger M; Toraason M; Booth-Jones A; Talaska G; Lushniak B; DeBord G; Cheever K; Kreig E; Butler MA
Applying Biomarkers to Occupational Health Practice, Santa Fe, NM, March 24-25, 2003. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control, 2003 Mar; :3
Automotive repair work represents one of the few remaining large industries (approximately 900,000 workers) in the U.S. where exposure to potentially hazardous chemicals are not well controlled. The prevention of exposure to these hazards has so far received little attention. One identified hazard for these workers is used gasoline engine oils (UGEO) which is known to contain substantial amounts of carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and other toxic compounds. Workers in this trade have been associated with an elevated risk of brain, lung, and bladder cancer that conceivably could be associated with UGEO exposure. They also experience a high prevalence of skin problems. This pilot study included 18 trade technicians performing a variety of work with potential exposure to UGEO. Each worker was matched with an unexposed person of similar age and smoking status. The evaluation methods included measurement of 1-hydroxypyrene in the urine as a marker of exposure and absorption of PAHs, collection of blood samples for measurement of DNA strand breaks by the COMET assay and DNA benzo[a]pyrene adducts in lymphocytes. A thorough skin evaluation was performed using grading of digital photographs, measures using adhesive tape strips for physically assessing skin flakiness, and bio-electrical techniques that measure skin moisture retention and transepidermal water loss rate (TEWL). The results of these measurements will be presented in the poster. An intervention research program that uses these biomarkers is being designed to evaluate ways in which automotive repair technicians might minimize the adverse effects of their work through a combination of washing, glove protection and better skin care management.
Automobile-repair-shops; Automotive-industry; Exposure-assessment; Carcinogens; Polycyclic-hydrocarbons; Skin-irritants; Skin-exposure; Skin-disorders; Lung-cancer; Bladder-cancer; Biomarkers; Central-nervous-system-disorders; Central-nervous-system; Urogenital-system-disorders; Urogenital-system; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Respiratory-system-disorders; Aromatic-hydrocarbons
Publication Date
Document Type
Abstract; Conference/Symposia Proceedings
Fiscal Year
NIOSH Division
Source Name
Applying Biomarkers to Occupational Health Practice, Santa Fe, NM, March 24-25, 2003
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division