Neurotoxicity associated with exposure to 1-bromopropane in golf-club cleansing workers

BACKGROUND: 1-Bromopropane (1-BP) is an alternative to ozone-depleting solvent that is used in degreasing, dry cleaning, spray adhesives, and aerosol solvents. Occupational exposure to 1-BP is associated with adverse peripheral sensory, motor, and central nervous system (CNS) effects. We report our Health Hazard and Medical Evaluation of 6 patients with neurotoxicity associated with occupational exposure to 1-BP. Case series and environmental evaluation. Six workers, 1 male and 5 female, were exposed to high ambient 1-BP concentrations while employed in a golf club cleaning factory. 1-BP was identified in the bulk solvent sample used by the workers and confirmed the workers' daily occupational exposure to 1-BP for 3-10 months. The major presenting symptoms were tingling pain, soreness in lower extremities, and paresthesia. N-acetyl-S-(n-propyl)-L-cysteine (AcPrCys), a 1-BP metabolite, was identified by LC/MS/MS in the urine (0.171-1.74 mg/g-Cr) of these workers 5-26 days following 1-BP exposure.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: An occupational outbreak of 1-BP poisoning occurred as a result of recurrent power outages, condenser, and exhaust fans malfunction, and inadequate personal protection. Occupational exposure to 1-BP may result in peripheral neuropathy as well as adverse CNS effects. Urine AcPrCys may be a specific biomarker for 1-BP exposure.

Source: Wang TH, Wu ML, Wu YH, Tsai WJ, Lin KP, Wang CL, Yang CC, Deng JF. Clin. Toxicol. (T and F), 2015.

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