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:6/27/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... for mental health professionals, announced today its affiliation with Tennessee Counseling Association. ... solutions to the network of the Tennessee Counseling Association, adding exclusive benefits and ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 , ... Quality metrics ... yet in many ways they remain in the eye of the beholder, according to ... a publication of The American Journal of Managed Care. For the full issue, ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... Brent Kasmer, a legally blind and certified ... be personalized through a fitness app. The fitness app plans to fix the two major ... only offer a one size fits all type program , They don’t eliminate ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... temporary closing of Bruton Memorial Library on June 21 due to a possible lice infestation, ... aspect of head lice: the parasite’s ability to live away from a human host, and ... necessary one in the event that lice have simply gotten out of control. , As ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Dr. Calvin Johnson has ... he has implemented orthobiologic procedures as a method for treating his patients. The ... first doctors to perform the treatment. Orthobiologics are substances that orthopaedic surgeons use ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Bracket , ... launch its next generation clinical outcomes platform, Bracket eCOA (SM) ... held on June 26 – 30, 2016 in ... first electronic Clinical Outcome Assessment product of its kind to ... #715. Bracket eCOA 6.0 is a flexible platform ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... INDIANAPOLIS , June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... Diabetes Tomorrow,s Leaders Scholarship is any indication, the future ... today online at www.diabetesscholars.org by the Diabetes ... stand in the way of academic and community service ... scholarship program since 2012, and continues to advocate for ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- Revolutionary technology includes multi-speaker listening to ... leaders in advanced audiology and hearing aid technology, has ... the world,s first internet connected hearing aid that opens ...      (Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160622/382240 ) , ... firsts,: , TwinLink™ - the first dual ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: