Occupational exposure to organophosphorus insecticides (OPs), such as diazinon, may be monitored by the measurement of the activity of peripheral cholinesterase enzymes, including erythrocyte acetylcholinesterase (EAChE) and plasma or serum cholinesterase (plasma or serum ChE). Exposures have also been measured by the analysis of dialkyl phosphate metabolites of OPs in urine. The potential health risks associated with exposure, especially those of a neurological nature, may then be estimated, and appropriate measures to reduce or eliminate exposures can be implemented. There is evidence that some OP pesticides may have in vivo genotoxic effects, suggesting a possible link with cancer with long term or repeated heavy exposures. This paper describes work performed in 17 subjects with a single or two exposures to a sheep dip containing diazinon. Urine samples revealed OP metabolites dimethylphosphate (DMP), dimethylthiophosphate (DMTP), diethylphosphate (DEP) and diethylthiophosphate (DETP) in 37% of subjects at low levels which were not elevated after exposure. EAChE and plasma ChE were also unchanged before and after exposure, and were similar to those measured in unexposed control groups. Sister chromatid exchanges (SCE), a marker of chromosome damage, was significantly elevated in peripheral blood lymphocytes after exposure compared with before. SCE were unchanged in a group of non-occupationally exposed workers. In vitro studies with both authentic diazinon (98%) and diazinon in a sheep dip formulation (45%) showed increased SCE and decreased replicative indices, suggesting toxic and genotoxic effects of diazinon. (C) 2000 Published by Elsevier Science B.V.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Mutation Research - Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis|
|Publication status||Published - 20 Dec 2000|
- Erythrocyte acetylcholinesterase
- Serum cholinesterase
- Sister chromatid exchange