Objectives Study the relationship between inhalation of airborne particles in a pulp and paper mill and markers of inflammation and coagulation in blood.
Method Personal sampling of inhalable dust was performed for 72 subjects working in a Swedish pulp and paper mill. Stationary measurements were used to study different particle size fractions including respirable dust, PM10 , PM2.5, the particle surface area and particle number concentrations of ultrafine particles. Markers of inflammation such as interleukins (IL-1b, IL-6, IL-8, and IL-10), C-reactive protein (CRP), serum amyloid A (SAA), and fibrinogen and markers of coagulation such as factor VIII, von Willebrand factor vWF), plasminogen activator inhibitor (PAI-1), and D-dimer were determined before the first shift after a work free period of normally five days and after the first, second and third shift
Results The average 8hr-TWA level of inhalable dust in was 0.30 mg/m3, range 0.005–3.3 mg/m3.The proxies for 8hr-TWAs of respirable dust was 0.045 mg/m3, PM10 0.17 mg/m3 and PM2.5 0.08 mg/m3. No significant increase of markers of inflammation or coagulation in blood during the working week was noted after a non-exposure period of five days. In a multiple regression analysis adjustments were made for sex, age, smoking, BMI, and blood group. Significant positive correlations were found between several particle exposure metrics and CRP, SAA and fibrinogen taken pre- and post-shift day 1, suggesting a dose-effect relationship.
Conclusions These relations between particle exposure and inflammatory markers may indicate an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
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