Occupational exposure to asphalt fume can cause oxidative DNA damage among road paving workers

Am J Ind Med. 2018 Jun;61(6):471-476. doi: 10.1002/ajim.22830. Epub 2018 Mar 7.


Objectives: We designed the present study to determine the effect of occupational exposure to asphalt fumes on oxidative status and DNA damage in road paving workers.

Methods: Sixty road paving workers exposed to asphalt fumes and forty non-exposed control subjects were recruited. Occupational exposure to PAHs was assessed by urinary 1-hydroxypyrene (1-OHP) excretion. Serum thiol disulfide homeostasis (TDH), total oxidant status (TOS) and total antioxidant status (TAS) and urinary 8-hydro-deoxyguanosine (8-OH-dG) level were evaluated by automated colourimetric method.

Results: The urinary concentrations of 1-OHP and 8-OH-dG were significantly higher in the exposed group than in the control group (P < 0.001). Disulfide/thiol ratio, TOS, and TAS were also significantly higher for the asphalt workers. A positive correlation existed between urinary 1-OHP and 8-OH-dG, TOS and TAS.

Conclusion: Study results indicate that exposure to PAHs induces oxidative stress and causes genotoxic effects in asphalt workers.

Keywords: 8-hydro-deoxyguanosine; DNA damage; PAHs exposure; asphalt pavers; oxidative stress; thiol disulfide homeostasis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Air Pollutants, Occupational / adverse effects*
  • Air Pollutants, Occupational / blood
  • Air Pollutants, Occupational / urine
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Biomarkers / urine
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Construction Industry
  • DNA Damage*
  • Humans
  • Hydrocarbons / adverse effects*
  • Hydrocarbons / blood
  • Hydrocarbons / urine
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Occupational Exposure / analysis
  • Oxidative Stress*
  • Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons / adverse effects*
  • Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons / blood
  • Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons / urine
  • Young Adult


  • Air Pollutants, Occupational
  • Biomarkers
  • Hydrocarbons
  • Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons
  • asphalt