Evaluation of DNA damage in construction-site workers occupationally exposed to welding fumes and solvent-based paints in Turkey

Sardas S., OMURTAG G. Z., BECEREN A., Gül H., Beyoglu D.

Toxicology and Industrial Health, vol.26, no.9, pp.601-608, 2010 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 26 Issue: 9
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Doi Number: 10.1177/0748233710374463
  • Journal Name: Toxicology and Industrial Health
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.601-608
  • Keywords: DNA damage, construction site workers, welding fumes, solvent-based paints, comet assay
  • Istanbul Medipol University Affiliated: No


In this study, the comet assay was used to evaluate whether welding fume and solvent base paint exposure led to DNA damage in construction-site workers in Turkey. The workers (n = 52) were selected according to their exposure in the construction site and controls (n = 26) from the general population, with no history of occupational exposure. The alkaline comet assay, a standard method for assessing genotoxicity, has been applied in peripheral lymphocytes of all subjects. The mean percentages of DNA in tail (%DNAT) of each group were evaluated, including the comparisons between smokers in each different group and the duration of exposure. Significant increase in the mean %DNAT(p < 0.01) was observed in all exposed subjects (12.34 ± 2.05) when compared with controls (6.64 ± 1.43). Also %DNATwas significantly high (p < 0.01) in welders (13.59 ± 1.89) compared with painters (11.10 ± 1.35). There was a statistical meaningful difference in % DNATbetween control and exposed smokers. Our findings indicate that exposure to welding fumes and paints induce genotoxic effect in peripheral lymphocytes, indicating a potential health risk for workers. Therefore, to ensure maximum occupational safety, biomonitoring is of great value for assessing the risk for construction workers. © 2010, SAGE Publications. All rights reserved.