近日，我院劳动卫生与环境卫生研究团队在炭黑颗粒物职业暴露与人群健康研究领域取得了重要进展。相关研究成果以“Carbon content in airway macrophages and genomic instability in Chinese carbon black packers”为题，发表在期刊Archives of Toxicology（IF=5.741，毒理学1区）（DOI 10.1007/s00204-020-02678-6）上。
炭黑（Carbon Black，CB）颗粒是一种具有重要用途的工业材料，工业生产过程中易被人体吸入并沉积在肺部深处，引起多种肺部相关疾病。由于在世界范围从事炭黑生产和使用的职业群体人数众多，炭黑职业暴露风险评估受到广泛关注。目前，由于缺乏确凿的人群流行病学研究证据，国际癌症研究机构（International Agency for Research on Cancer，IARC）将炭黑归为2B类致癌物。尚无慢性炭黑暴露是否会增加外周血淋巴细胞基因组不稳定性的人群研究。本课题组在2012年选取焦作某炭黑生产车间的炭黑包装工人、洛阳某柴油机试车工人和当地水厂工人作为研究对象，建立了炭黑包装工（Carbon Black Packers，CBP）和柴油机试车工（Diesel Engine Testers，DET）队列研究。基于此，在郑玉新教授、冷曙光教授和唐敬龙副教授的指导下，课题组于2018年对CBP队列和DET队列进行随访，采用诱导痰中气道巨噬细胞的碳含量（Carbon Content in Airway Macrophages，CCAM）评估肺内暴露碳元素的生物效应剂量，并进行胞质分裂阻滞微核细胞组学试验（Cytokinesis-Block Micronucleus， CBMN）测定。采用Luminex多因子定量分析技术检测研究对象血清中的循环炎症因子。利用中介效应分析联合体外功能实验验证循环炎症因子在炭黑暴露诱导职业工人基因组不稳定性中的作用。
经研究发现，长期炭黑颗粒暴露以剂量依赖的方式增加职业人群基因组的不稳定性。长期暴露炭黑颗粒与柴油机尾气（Diesel engine exhaust，DEE）诱导职业人群基因组不稳定性的能力十分相似，有助于国际癌症研究机构重新评估炭黑致癌性，为提升炭黑的致癌性等级提供新的合理的人群流行病学证据。郑玉新教授与冷曙光教授为本文共同通讯作者，硕士研究生程文婷、刘元升与唐敬龙副教授为本文共同第一作者。上述研究得到了国家自然科学基金重大研究计划重点支持项目（91643203）、国家自然科学基金面上项目（81872600）的支持。
Recently, the research team of occupational and environmental health of our school has made great progress in the field of occupational exposure to carbon black and population health. The related research results were published in the journal Archives of Toxicology (IF=5.741, toxicology 1 area) (DOI 10.1007/s00204-020-02678-6) under the title of "Carbon content in airway macrophages and genomic instability in Chinese carbon black packers".
Carbon black (CB) is an important industrial material, causing a variety of lung-related diseases due to it is easy to be inhaled and deposited deep in the lung during industrial production. Owing to large number of occupational groups engaged in the production and use of CB worldwide, the occupational exposure risk assessment of CB had attracted wide attention. At present, international agency for research on cancer (IARC) classified CB as group 2B carcinogen due to inconclusive evidence from human epidemiological studies. Few human studies had assessed whether long-term CB exposure could increase genomic instability of peripheral blood lymphocytes. In 2012, our research group selected carbon black packers (CBPs)、diesel engine testers (DETs) and local water plant workers (non-CBPs) as the research groups to establish CBPs and DETs cohort study. Based on this, directed by Prof. Yuxin Zheng, Shuguang Leng and Jinglong Tang, the research team followed up CBPs and DETs cohort in 2018. Carbon content in airway macrophage (CCAM) quantified in induced sputum was used as a bio-effective dosimetry to assess the elemental carbon exposure. The genomic instability of peripheral blood lymphocytes was evaluated by cytokinesis-block micronucleus assay (CBMN). Luminex multi-cytokines quantitative analysis was used to detect circulating inflammatory factors in the serum of the research group. Mediation effect analysis and in vitro function verification experiment were applied to determine the role of circulating pro-inflammatory factors in the effect of CB exposure on the genomic instability of occupational workers.
It was found that long-term exposure to CB increased genomic instability of peripheral blood lymphocytes in the occupational population. Long-term CB aerosol and DEE exposure were very similar to their ability to induce genomic instability in occupational populations. These novel findings provided the new population epidemiological evidence of carcinogenicity of CB, and helped the IARC to reassess the carcinogenicity of CB and increase its carcinogenic grade. Prof. Yuxin Zheng and Shuguang Leng were co-supervised the study. Graduate students Wenting Cheng, Yuansheng Liu and Prof. Jinglong Tang were the co-first authors. The above research was supported by the Major Research Plan of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (91643203) and the General Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China (81872600).