Urinary 1-hydroxypyrene as an indicator of human exposure to ambient polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in a coal-burning environment

Sci Total Environ. 1990 Mar;92:145-54. doi: 10.1016/0048-9697(90)90326-p.


Urinary 1-hydroxypyrene of residents of Beijing, Shenyang and Taiyuan, and workers at two coke plants, a steel plant and control groups was determined using high pressure liquid chromatography. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) of airborne particulates from these cities and coke plants were analyzed using GC-MS; chromatogram profiles, from which 15 chemical compounds were quantified, were similar. The percentage of pyrene and benzo[a]pyrene in PAHs was fairly constant. Statistical analysis showed significant correlation of urinary 1-hydroxypyrene with the concentration of pyrene and benzo[a]pyrene in the ambient PAHs; the correlation coefficient was 0.978 and 0.959, respectively. It is suggested that urinary 1-hydroxypyrene can be used as a biological monitoring index for human exposure to genotoxic PAHs from the burning of coal.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Air Pollution / analysis*
  • Child
  • China
  • Coal*
  • Environmental Exposure
  • Environmental Monitoring / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Polycyclic Compounds / metabolism*
  • Polycyclic Compounds / toxicity
  • Pyrenes / metabolism*


  • Coal
  • Polycyclic Compounds
  • Pyrenes
  • 1-hydroxypyrene