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Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências

Print version ISSN 0001-3765On-line version ISSN 1678-2690

Abstract

AQUINO, TATIANE DE et al. DNA damage and cytotoxicity in pathology laboratory technicians exposed to organic solvents. An. Acad. Bras. Ciênc. [online]. 2016, vol.88, n.1, pp.227-236.  Epub Feb 05, 2016. ISSN 1678-2690.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/0001-3765201620150194.

The aim of this study was to evaluate potential DNA damage and cytotoxicity in pathology laboratory technicians exposed to organic solvents, mainly xylene. Peripheral blood and buccal cells samples were collected from 18 technicians occupationally exposed to organic solvents and 11 non-exposed individuals. The technicians were sampled at two moments: Monday and Friday. DNA damage and cytotoxicity were evaluated using the Comet Assay and the Buccal Micronucleus Cytome assay. Fifteen subjects (83.5%) of the exposed group to solvents complained about some symptom probably related to contact with vapours of organic solvents. DNA damage in the exposed group to solvents was nearly 2-fold higher on Friday than on Monday, and in both moments the individuals of this group showed higher levels of DNA damage in relation to controls. No statistical difference was detected in buccal cell micronucleus frequency between the laboratory technicians and the control group. However, in the analysis performed on Friday, technicians presented higher frequency (about 3-fold) of karyolytic and apoptotic-like cells (karyorrhectic and pyknotic) in relation to control group. Considering the damage frequency and the working time, a positive correlation was found in the exposed group to solvents (r=0.468; p=0.05). The results suggest that pathology laboratory workers inappropriately exposed to organic solvents have increased levels of DNA damage.

Keywords : DNA damage; micronucleus; toxicology; occupational health; organic solvents; xylene.

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