Anderson-SE; Meade-BJ; Butterworth-LF; Munson-AE
J Immunotoxicol 2007 Jan; 4(1):15-23
Arc welding is one of the most common forms of welding and includes the use of stainless steel electrodes that emit fumes containing chromium and nickel. Epidemological studies suggest a correlation between arc welding and adverse respiratory health effects. Studies evaluating the immunotoxic effects of welding fumes are limited due to the large number of variables associated with welding. This work investigates the immunotoxic effects of welding fumes by analyzing the in vivo and in vitro IgM response to a T-dependent antigen after welding fume exposure. Significant decreases in the total IgM activity/106 viable cells and total IgM activity/well were observed in splenocytes exposed to 5 g/ml of either total or soluble welding fumes. A significant reduction in the specific IgM activity in lung associated lymph node cells was also observed following four pharyngeal aspirations of 10 mg/kg total or soluble welding fumes to mice. Significant elevations in the absolute lymph node cell numbers for both B- and T-cells including the CD4+ and CD8+ subsets were observed. These results demonstrate that exposure to manual metal-stainless steel welding fumes is immunosuppressive in the presence of increased lymphoctye numbers in mice and raises concerns regarding the potential for adverse immunological effects to impact respiratory health in humans.
Arc-welding; Arc-welders; Respiratory-irritants; Respiratory-hypersensitivity; Fumes; Welders-lung; Welding-industry; Immune-system-disorders; Lymphocytes; Lung-cells; Lung-disorders; Lung-irritants