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Exposure to fungicides in fruit growing: Re-entry time as a predictor for dermal exposure

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Author: Tielemans, E. · Louwerse, E. · Cock, J. de · Brouwer, D. · Zielhuis, G. · Heederik, D.
Institution: Centraal Instituut voor Voedingsonderzoek TNO
Source:American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal, 6, 60, 789-793
Identifier: 235211
Keywords: Nutrition · Epidemiology · Exposure assessment · Fungicides · Captan · Fungicide · Agricultural worker · Clinical article · Glove · Half life time · High performance liquid chromatography · Human · Occupational exposure · Prediction · Skin · Time · Agricultural Workers' Diseases · Aniline Compounds · Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid · Dermatitis, Occupational · Fruit · Fungicides, Industrial · Humans · Male · Netherlands · Occupational Exposure · Pilot Projects · Predictive Value of Tests · Regression Analysis · Seasons · Sulfonamides · Time Factors


As part of a European Concerted Action on Male Reproduction Capability an exposure assessment survey was conducted among seasonal workers in the fruit growing sector in the Netherlands. Dermal exposure to the fungicides captan and tolylfluanid was measured using cotton gloves (12 persons) and skin pads on several body parts (12 persons). In addition, a set of exposure data was used from a study conducted recently among Dutch fruit growers. For harvesting activities, re-entry time appeared to be an important determinant of dermal exposure to captan and tolylfluanid. Explained variance of regression models was moderate to high (range 0.30-0.87). For captan, calculated half-life times from the most recent exposure survey were lower (glove data: 5 days; pad data: 6 days) compared with half-life times based on the previously conducted study (11 days). Possible explanations for the discrepancy are discussed. For tolylfluanid, estimated half-life times during harvesting were 2 and 3 days, based on pad and glove data, respectively. Prediction of captan exposure during other crop activities appeared to be far more difficult (explained variance equal to 0.06), although the estimated half-life time was comparable with that for harvesting. The data suggest that re-entry time gives useful information to group workers in broad exposure categories. Nonetheless, it was concluded that large studies are needed to evaluate the importance of re-entry time in more detail.