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Inflammatory markers and exposure to airborne particles among workers in a Swedish pulp and paper mill.

Journal article
Authors Håkan Westberg
Karine Elihn
Eva Andersson
Bodil Persson
Lennart Andersson
Ing-Liss Bryngelsson
Cathe Karlsson
Bengt Sjögren
Published in International archives of occupational and environmental health
Volume 89
Issue 5
Pages 813-22
ISSN 1432-1246
Publication year 2016
Published at
Pages 813-22
Language en
Subject categories Epidemiology


To study the relationship between exposure to airborne particles in a pulp and paper mill and markers of inflammation and coagulation in blood.Personal sampling of inhalable dust was performed for 72 subjects working in a Swedish pulp and paper mill. Stationary measurements were used to study concentrations of total dust, respirable dust, PM10 and PM2.5, the particle surface area and the particle number concentrations. Markers of inflammation, interleukins (IL-1b, IL-6, IL-8, and IL-10), C-reactive protein (CRP), serum amyloid A (SAA), and fibrinogen and markers of coagulation factor VIII, von Willebrand, plasminogen activator inhibitor, and D-dimer were measured in plasma or serum. Sampling was performed on the last day of the work free period of 5 days, before and after the shift the first day of work and after the shifts the second and third day. In a mixed model analysis, the relationship between particulate exposures and inflammatory markers was determined. Sex, age, smoking, and BMI were included as covariates.The average 8-h time-weighted average (TWA) air concentration levels of inhalable dust were 0.30 mg/m(3), range 0.005-3.3 mg/m(3). The proxies for average 8-h TWAs of respirable dust were 0.045 mg/m(3). Significant and consistent positive relations were found between several exposure metrics (PM 10, total and inhalable dust) and CRP, SAA and fibrinogen taken post-shift, suggesting a dose-effect relationship.This study supports a relationship between occupational particle exposure and established inflammatory markers, which may indicate an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

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