An exploratory study of the effects of occupational exposure to physical demands on biomarkers of cartilage and muscle damage.
J Occup Environ Hyg 2015 Feb; 12(2):138-144
Biomarkers of tissue damage, derived from tissues commonly injured as a result of occupational physical demands, may be of use for future prediction of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs). This exploratory study assessed whether selected biomarkers are likely to be sensitive to the level of occupational physical demands. Twenty-four participants were recruited to form two groups, with relatively high and low levels of WMSD risk. Serum levels of Cartilage Oligomeric Matrix Protein (COMP), Interleukin-6 (IL6), and Creatine Kinase (CK)-which respectively indicate cartilage damage, muscle use, and muscle damage-were obtained,. Six blood samples were obtained before and after work on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday of one working week. Additionally, a self-report measure of risk factor exposure, the Hollmann Index, was used to, and did, confirm group differences in WMSD risk. COMP levels varied significantly over time, but not between groups. IL6 levels were greater in the high-risk group at all time points and varied significantly over time and between groups. CK levels did not vary significantly over time or between groups. IL6 successfully differentiated between the high and low risk groups, suggesting potential use in the occupational domain. Prospective studies are needed, though, to associate biomarker levels/changes with WMSD risk.
Biomarkers; Tissue-culture; Tissue-distribution; Physical-reactions; Physiology; Physiological-effects; Musculoskeletal-system; Musculoskeletal-system-disorders; Humans; Men; Women;
Author Keywords: biomarkers; cartilage; muscle; musculoskeletal disorders; occupational exposure
Dr.Maury Nussbaum, Department of Industrial & Systems Engineering, Virginia Tech, 250 Durham Hall (0118), Blacksburg, VA 24061
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene
Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Virginia Tech University, Blacksburg, Virginia