Evaluation of some biomonitoring markers in occupationally exposed populations to acrylonitrile

H. Borba, Margarida Monteiro, Maria José Proença, Teresa Chaveca, Vera Pereira, Nuno Lynce, J. Rueff

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14 Citations (Scopus)


In the present work we studied acrylonitrile (AN) occupationally exposed populations and respective control individuals working in a Portuguese plant producing acrylic textile fibers. Three subgroups of individuals were considered: controls (C), workers of the continuous polymerization (CP) area, and workers of equipment maintenance (MM). Besides aiming to contribute to a better understanding of the hazardous exposure of man to AN, the study aimed to help validate and optimize the use of a combination of methods applied to human populations exposed to genotoxic compounds. Three main compartments related to the dose or effect of the hazardous compound were evaluated using various assessment methods: 1) internal dose (genotoxicity in urine, indicators of oxidative stress, induction of cytochromes P450); 2) biological effective dose (hemoglobin adducts); and 3) early biological effects (chromosomal aberrations, sister chromatid exchanges). Although concern with exposure to AN has long been the subject of numerous studies, they have been carried out essentially in animals and using in vitro systems. The significant differences (P <0.01) found in the chromosomal aberrations of MM are in agreement with the highly significant levels of hemoglobin adducts described in another study performed in the same population. Hemoglobin adducts were also sensitive in detecting a hazardous exposure in the case of CP. The results obtained for the lipid peroxidation indicator used seem to confirm the AN capability of inducing lipid peroxidation in vivo. From the results available it seems that chromosomal aberrations as well as hemoglobin adducts are accurate and sensitive biomonitoring markers for AN exposure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-218
Number of pages14
JournalTeratogenesis Carcinogenesis And Mutagenesis
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1996


  • Acrylonitrile
  • Biomonitoring
  • Chromosomal aberrations
  • Genotoxicants
  • Induction of cytochrome P450
  • Lipid peroxidation
  • Sister chromatid exchanges
  • Urinary genotoxicity


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