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Role of ferrous sulfate in hexavalent chromium-induced cytotoxicity and apoptosis in human dermal fibroblasts.
Toxicologist 2008 Mar; 102(1):316-317
In the US, approximately 1.5 million construction workers are occupationally exposed to cement each year. Allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) is a major skin problem reported among cement workers. Hexavalent chromium [Cr(VI)], present as a contaminant in the cement, has been attributed to be responsible for cement ACD. A significant reduction in the incidence of cement ACD has been reported in certain European countries where the addition of ferrous sulfate (FeSO4) to cement has been mandated. The role of FeSO4 to counteract cement ACD has been questioned and in the US the practice of addition of FeSO4 to cement to prevent ACD is not followed. Presently, we have conducted in vitro cell culture experiments to investigate whether FeSO4 is capable to protect cells of human dermal origin against Cr(VI)-induced toxicity. Human dermal fibroblasts were treated with potassium dichromate (0-50 microM final concentrations) alone or with potassium dichromate and FeSO4 (0, 10, 20 and 40 microM final concentrations) for 24-hours. At the end of the exposure period, cytotoxicity and apoptosis were determined in the cells by MTT assay and TUNNEL assay, respectively. Exposure of the fibroblasts to chromium alone resulted in a concentration-dependent cytotoxicity and apoptosis. The chromium-induced cytotoxicity and apoptosis in the fibroblasts were significantly blocked by the addition of FeSO4 to the culture medium. Similar protective effect was noticed when the experiments were repeated with human keratinocytes. In summary, our results demonstrated a protective role for FeSO4 in Cr(VI)-induced cytotoxicity and apoptosis in human dermal fibroblasts and keratinocytes. The findings may thus indicate that the incidence of cement ACD among construction workers in the US may be prevented by the addition of FeSO4 to the cement.
Occupational-exposure; Construction-workers; Contact-allergies; Contact-dermatitis; Cell-damage; Cement-industry; Chemical-hypersensitivity; Chemical-properties; Allergic-dermatitis; Cytotoxic-effects; Cytotoxins
Issue of Publication
The Toxicologist. Society of Toxicology 47th Annual Meeting and ToxExpo, March 16-20, 2008, Seattle, Washington
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division