Navigation Links
Chemical culprit in 'popcorn worker's lung' identified
Date:8/31/2007

Researchers in the Netherlands have identified a chemical agent that may be a, if not the, culprit in bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome (BOS), or popcorn workers lung, a severe occupational lung disease first noted in 2001 among workers at an American plant that makes microwaveable popcorn.

The research, which examined a population of workers at a chemical plant that produced diacetyl (a key component of butter flavoring), was reported in the first issue for September of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, published by the American Thoracic Society.

Our study found a cluster of [previously undiagnosed] BOS cases in a diacetyl production plant, said lead author Frits G. B. G. J. van Rooy, M.D., of the Division of Environmental Epidemiology at the Universiteit Utrecht in the Netherlands. This supports the conclusion that an agent in the diacetyl production process has caused BOS.

Diacetyl was identified early on as a marker for exposure among popcorn workers. Its specific role, if any, however, in the development of BOS was not known. No cases of BOS had previously been identified outside of North America or in chemical production plants related to flavoring. By investigating the BOS status of former workers of the diacetyl plant, researchers hoped to determine whether there was a link between diacetyl exposure and the development of BOS.

With the help of the human resources department, Dr. van Rooy and colleagues traced 196 former workers who were still living and who had been employed at the diacetyl production plant between 1960 and 2003, when the plant closed. They identified 175 who consented to complete exposure and respiratory health questionnaires and undergo lung function tests and clinical assessments. Of the 102 process workers considered to be at the highest risk for exposure, researchers positively identified three cases of BOS, and later, a fourth, in a worker who had initially declined to participate in the research.

This is the first study where cases of BOS were found in a chemical plant producing diacetyl, wrote Dr. van Rooy.

While the researchers were unable to rule out contributions of other chemicals to the development of BOS, the study significantly narrows the field of suspects to diacetyl and the components and byproducts of its manufacturing process.

The spectrum of exposures is much smaller in this production plant compared with the popcorn processing plants where a wide range of chemicals was identified, the researchers wrote. This population-based survey establishes the presence of BOS, or popcorn workers lung, in chemical workers manufacturing a flavoring ingredient with exposures to diacetyl, acetoin and acetyldehyde. Any or all of these exposures may contribute to the risk of this emerging occupational disease.

The novel finding of four cases of BOS in workers at the diacetyl plant has important implications for practicing physicians and public health officials.

None of the four cases had been recognized as bronchiolitis obliterans or as occupationally related, wrote Kathleen Kreiss, M.D., in the accompanying editorial in the same issue of the journal. To identify flavoring-related bronchiolitis obliterans, physicians need to consider the diagnosis, she noted. Dr. Kreiss, of the Field Studies Branch of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, was one of the first investigators on the scene when popcorn workers lung arose as a public health issue.

Furthermore, she writes, the collective evidence for diacetyl causing a respiratory hazard supports action to minimize exposure to diacetyl, even if contributions by other flavoring chemicals exist.


'/>"/>

Contact: Suzy Martin
smartin@thoracic.org
212-315-8631
American Thoracic Society
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Biochemical Markers Might Help Predict Heart Problems
2. Chemical in Gila monsters saliva yields Alzheimer drug
3. Chemical found in plants may be the treatment for leukemia
4. Chemicals in clear plastics can cause learning difficulties
5. Harmful chemicals change the genetic response to hormone estrogen
6. Quitting Smoking Made Easy By Track Of New Chemical
7. Brain Chemical Identified For Drug Dependent Behavior
8. Toxic chemicals found in domestic products poisoning newborn babies
9. Block Immune System Chemical For Treating Asthma
10. Chest Pain Can Be Identified By New Tracer Chemical 30 Hours After Pain Relief
11. Cancer Causing Proteins Trigger Abnormal Biochemical Reactions In Cells
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... December 09, 2016 , ... MEDI+SIGN®, ... announced today that a new solution for Emergency Departments (ED) has been added ... space in Emergency Department examination rooms, and with a simplified pallet of information ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... 08, 2016 , ... After enjoying record-breaking attendance at its ... its 33rd Annual Issues & Research Conference, March 2-3, 2017, at the ... conference is “Persistent Challenges and New Opportunities: Using Research to Accelerate the Dialogue." ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... Plainsboro, NJ (PRWEB) , ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... patients, cancer centers and advocacy groups, has aligned with Upstage Lung Cancer in efforts ... In making the announcement, Michael J. Hennessy, Jr said, “CURE Media Group is honored ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... Launching of ... Unified Instance Manager architecture, meeting the needs of multichannel growth and doubling ... unattended auto-dialing system without agents, Presence Robodialer, provides greater operational capacity, administrative ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... Today’s patients are encouraged ... in mind, SIGVARIS has created a new line of anti-embolism stockings to help ... provide the benefits of graduated compression when transitioning from recovery to early rehabilitation. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/9/2016)... Dec 9, 2016 Research and Markets ... 2016-2020" report to their offering. ... The report forecasts the global optical transceiver ... 2016-2020. The report covers the present scenario and ... To calculate the market size, the report considers the revenue generated ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... Dec. 9, 2016  Harmar Mobility, LLC announced today that Steven ... of the Board of Directors. Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20161209/447552 ... ... Mr. Dawson,s executive career includes ... across a variety of industries. He brings to the company deep ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... Dec. 9, 2016 aTyr Pharma, Inc. (Nasdaq: ... of Physiocrine-based therapeutics to address severe, rare diseases, today announced that ... BMO Prescriptions for Success Healthcare Conference at the InterContinental Barclay Hotel ... 14, 2016, at 4:20 p.m. ET. About aTyr ... aTyr ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: