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855 Dermal exposure to diisocyanates: development and validation of an analytical method for accurately assessment of very low levels of exposure
  1. Radu-Corneliu Duca1,
  2. Matteo Creta1,
  3. Katrien Poels1,
  4. Lode Godderis1,2,
  5. Jeroen Vanoirbeek1
  1. 1Environment and Health, Department of Public Health and Primary Care, University of Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
  2. 2External Service for Prevention and Protection at Work, IDEWE, Haasrode, Belgium


Introduction Dermal exposure to sensitizers such as diisocyanate have been described to promote the development of asthma in later stages when respiratory occupational exposure occurs. Therefore, we developed a reliable, sensitive and validated methodology based on dermal patches to assess skin exposure to diisocyanates.

Methods An UPLC-Unispray-MS/MS method was established and validated in order to reach very low levels of detection. Custom-made dermal patches were developed in order to allow optimal sampling of diisocyanates. Their sampling capability was evaluated in a controlled environment test-chamber were patches were exposed to increasing concentrations of diisocyanates.

Result The UPLC-MS/MS method using a Unispray ionisation source, based on supercritical fluids ionisation and Coanda effect, allowed reaching very low levels of detection (LoD=1 pg/mL) for all the targeted compounds (i.e. 4,4-MDI, 2,4-MDI, 2,6-TDI, 2,4-TDI, 1,6-HDI, and IPDI). Due to the high sensitivity of the analytical method, very low levels of diisocyanates (i.e. 25 pg/patch) are detected on the custom-made dermal patches. Furthermore, the patches allowed the sampling of a broad range of concentration levels (from 5 pg/cm2 to 5 ng/cm2), which have been correlated with the air levels from the controlled environment chamber-test.

Discussion We succeeded to develop a method to assess dermal exposure to diisocyanates. Field studies are now necessary to further evaluate the suitability of the custom-made patches, as well as to relate low levels of exposure and potential health outcomes.

  • dermal exposure
  • diisocyanates
  • UPLC-Unispray-MS/MS

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