Clinical, biochemical and neurobehavioural studies of workers engaged in the manufacture of quinalphos

Food Chem Toxicol. 2000 Jan;38(1):65-9. doi: 10.1016/s0278-6915(99)00123-4.


59 workers exposed to different chemicals during the manufacture of quinalphos, an organophosphate pesticide (OP) and 17 control subjects were studied. Despite similar blood acetylcholinestarase (AChE) levels in both the exposed and control subjects, a significant number of exposed subjects had altered plantar and ankle reflexes. Higher nervous functions such as memory, learning and vigilance were also found to be affected in these subjects. These findings were attributed to chronic low dose combined exposure to different chemicals used/formed in the manufacture of quinalphos. The study raises the doubt that monitoring of AChE alone among subjects engaged in the manufacture of OP pesticides may not be an adequate safeguard as regards to their health.

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcholinesterase / blood
  • Adult
  • Ankle
  • Attention / drug effects
  • Biomarkers / analysis
  • Chemical Industry
  • Foot
  • Humans
  • Insecticides / adverse effects*
  • Learning Disabilities / chemically induced*
  • Male
  • Memory Disorders / chemically induced*
  • Occupational Exposure*
  • Organothiophosphorus Compounds / adverse effects*
  • Reflex, Abnormal*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Biomarkers
  • Insecticides
  • Organothiophosphorus Compounds
  • quinalphos
  • Acetylcholinesterase