Evaluation of Serum, Urine, and Hair Chromium Levels as Indices of Chromium Exposure and the Relationship of these Indices to Serum Lipid and Insulin Levels.
Concentrations of chromium (Cr) in hair, serum, and urine, and serum concentrations of insulin and lipids of a selected group of men exposed to trivalent Cr (Cr III) were compared with those of men not exposed to Cr. Seventy -three tannery workers (TW) (mean age 37 +/- 12 years) from four Southern Ontario tanneries and fifty-two control subjects (CS) (mean age 41 +/- 13 years), matched for age, race, and socioeconomic status, from the Guelph and Toronto areas participated. The median hair and serum Cr concentrations for the TW were significantly higher (p < 0.01) than for the CS (hair Cr 453 vs 124 ng/g; serum Cr 0.49 vs 0.15 ng/ml). Median urinary Cr/creatinine ratios (Cr/Cre) for the TW on Monday morning (0.83 ng/mg) and Friday afternoon (0.68 ng/mg) were also significantly higher (p < 0.01, p < 0.01, respectively) than the median urinary Cr/Cre ratio for the urine samples collected on a Friday afternoon from the CS (0.18 ng/mg). For the TW, the median Friday urinary Cr/Cre ratio was significantly higher (p = 0.03) than the corresponding Monday Cr/Cre ratio. For the TW, urinary Cr/Cre ratios (Monday and Friday) were correlated significantly and positively with both Cr concentrations in serum (r = 0.45, p < 0.01; r = 0.71, p < 0.01, respectively) and in hair (r = 0.43, p < 0.01; r = 0.64, p < 0.01, respectively). Concentrations of Cr in hair and in serum were also significantly correlated (r = 0.52, p < 0.01). There were no significant differences between the TW and CS in serum concentrations of total cholesterol (TC), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), or triglycerides, or in calculated values for low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, %HDL-C, and TC/HDL-C. Likewise, no significant differences in serum insulin concentrations were noted between the two groups. Results of this study indicate that Cr III, from compounds used in the leather tanning industry, is absorbed and retained. Absorption of Cr III had no significant effect on serum insulin concentrations or serum lipid profiles. These results also suggest that concentrations of Cr in hair, serum, and urine are valid biological indices of industrial exposure to Cr III.
- Pub Date:
- Physics: Molecular