Metals cause nephrotoxicity with acute and/or chronic exposure; however, few epidemiological studies have examined impacts of exposure to metal fumes on renal injury in welding workers. In total, 66 welding workers and 12 office workers were recruited from a shipyard located in southern Taiwan. Urine samples from each subject were collected at the beginning (baseline) and end of the work week (1-week exposure). Personal exposure to PM2.5 was measured. The 8-h mean PM2.5 was50.3 μg/m3 for welding workers and 27.4 μ g/m3 for office workers. iTRAQs coupled with LC-MS/MS were used to discover the pathways in response to welding PM2.5 in the urine, suggesting that extracellular matrix (ECM)-receptor interactions are a critical mechanism. ECM-receptor interaction-related biomarkers for renal injury, kidney injury molecule (KIM)-1 and neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL), were significantly elevated in welding workers post-exposure, as well as were urinary Al, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, and Ni levels. NGAL was more significantly associated with Al (r = 0.737, p <0.001), Cr (r = 0.705, p <0.001), Fe (r = 0.709, p <0.001), and Ni (r = 0.657, p <0.001) than was KIM-1, suggesting that NGAL may be a urinary biomarker for welding PM 2.5 exposure. Nephrotoxicity (e.g., renal tubular injury) may be an emerging concern in occupational health.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
Chuang, K. J., Pan, C. H., Su, C-L., Lai, C. H., Lin, W. Y., Ma, C. M., Ho, S. C., Bien, M. Y., Chen, C. H., & Chuang, H. C. (2015). Urinary neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin is associated with heavy metal exposure in welding workers. Scientific Reports, 5, . https://doi.org/10.1038/srep18048