• Factors influencing particle number concentrations, size distributions and modal parameters at a roof-level and roadside site in Leicester, UK.
    • Agus, Young, Lingard, Smalley, Tate, Goodman and Tomlin
    • Sci Total Environ
    • 386 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Measurements of urban particle number concentrations and size distributions in the range 5-1000 nm were taken at elevated (roof-level) and roadside sampling sites on Narborough Road in Leicester, UK, along with simultaneous measurements of traffic, NO(x), CO and 1,3-butadiene concentrations and meteorological parameters. A fitting program was used to determine the characteristics of up to five modal groups present in the particle size distributions. All particle modal concentrations peaked during the morning and evening rush hours. Additional events associated with the smallest mode, that were not observed to be connected to primary emissions, were also present suggesting that this mode consisted of newly formed secondary particles. These events included peaks in concentration which coincided with peaks in solar radiation, and lower concentrations of the larger modes. Investigation into the relationships between traffic flow and occupancy indicated three flow regimes; free-flow, unstable and congested. During free-flow conditions, positive linear relationships existed between traffic flow and particle modal number concentrations. However, during unstable and congested periods, this relationship was shown to break-down. Similar trends were observed for concentrations of the gas phase pollutants NO(x), CO and 1,3-butadiene. Strong linear relationships existed between NO(x), CO, 1,3-butadiene concentrations, nucleation and Aitken mode concentrations at both sampling locations, indicating a local traffic related emission source. At the roadside, both nucleation and Aitken mode are best represented by a decreasing exponential function with wind speed, whereas at the roof-level this relationship only occurred for Aitken mode particles. The differing relationships at the two sampling locations are most likely due to a combination of meteorological factors and distance from the local emission source.

    • Ranking cancer risks of organic hazardous air pollutants in the United States.
    • Loh, Levy, Spengler, Houseman and Bennett
    • Environ Health Perspect
    • 115 : 8
    • Abstract

    BACKGROUND: In this study we compared cancer risks from organic hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) based on total personal exposure summed across different microenvironments and exposure pathways. METHODS: We developed distributions of personal exposure concentrations using field monitoring and modeling data for inhalation and, where relevant, ingestion pathways. We calculated risks for a nonoccupationally exposed and nonsmoking population using U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Office of Environmental Health and Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) unit risks. We determined the contribution to risk from indoor versus outdoor sources using indoor/outdoor ratios for gaseous compounds and the infiltration factor for particle-bound compounds. RESULTS: With OEHHA's unit risks, the highest ranking compounds based on the population median are 1,3-butadiene, formaldehyde, benzene, and dioxin, with risks on the order of 10(-4)-10(-5). The highest risk compounds with the U.S. EPA unit risks were dioxin, benzene, formaldehyde, and chloroform, with risks on a similar order of magnitude. Although indoor exposures are responsible for nearly 70% of risk using OEHHA's unit risks, when infiltration is accounted for, inhalation of outdoor sources contributed 50% to total risk, on average. Additionally, 15% of risk resulted from exposures through food, mainly due to dioxin. CONCLUSIONS: Most of the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon, benzene, acetaldehyde, and 1,3-butadiene risk came from outdoor sources, whereas indoor sources were primarily responsible for chloroform, formaldehyde, and naphthalene risks. The infiltration of outdoor pollution into buildings, emissions from indoor sources, and uptake through food are all important to consider in reducing overall personal risk to HAPs.

    • HPLC-ESI+-MS/MS analysis of N7-guanine-N7-guanine DNA cross-links in tissues of mice exposed to 1,3-butadiene.
    • Goggin, Loeber, Park, Walker, Wickliffe and Tretyakova
    • Chem Res Toxicol
    • 20 : 5
    • Abstract

    1,3-butadiene (BD) is a major industrial chemical used in rubber and plastics production and is recognized as an animal and human carcinogen. Although the exact mechanism of BD-induced carcinogenesis is unknown, chemical reactions of epoxide metabolites of BD with DNA to form nucleobase adducts are likely to contribute to multistage carcinogenesis. Among BD-derived epoxy metabolites, 1,2:3,4-diepoxybutane (DEB) appears to be the most genotoxic and carcinogenic, probably because of its bifunctional nature. Initial DNA alkylation by DEB produces N7-(2'-hydroxy-3',4'-epoxybut-1'-yl)guanine monoadducts, which can then be hydrolyzed to N7-(2',3',4'-trihydroxy-1'-yl)guanine or can react with another site in double-stranded DNA to form 1,4-bis(guan-7-yl)-2,3-butanediol (bis-N7G-BD) cross-links. While (2',3',4'-trihydroxy-1'-yl)guanine lesions have been previously quantified in vivo, they cannot be used as a biomarker of DEB because the same lesions are also formed by another, more prevalent BD metabolite, 1,2-epoxy-3,4-butanediol. In contrast, bis-N7G-BD can only be formed from DEB, potentially providing a specific biomarker of DEB formation. We have developed a quantitative HPLC-ESI+-MS/MS method for measuring racemic and meso forms of bis-N7G-BD in DNA extracted from tissues of BD-exposed laboratory animals. In our approach, bis-N7G-BD adducts are released from DNA as free bases by neutral thermal hydrolysis, purified by solid-phase extraction, and subjected to HPLC-ESI+-MS/MS analysis. Selected reaction monitoring is performed by following the loss of a guanine moiety from protonated molecules of bis-N7G-BD and the formation of protonated guanine under collision-induced dissociation. Quantitative analysis of racemic and meso forms of bis-N7G-BD is based on isotope dilution with the corresponding 15N-labeled internal standards. The lower limit of quantification of our current method is 10-20 fmol/0.1 mg of DNA. The accuracy and precision of the new method were determined by spiking control mouse liver DNA with racemic and meso forms of bis-N7G-BD (10 fmol each), followed by sample processing and HPLC-ESI+-MS/MS analysis. Calculated amounts of racemic and meso forms of bis-N7G-BD were within 20% of the theoretical value (9.7 +/- 2 and 9.2 +/- 1.9 fmol, respectively, N = 4). DNA extracted from liver and lung tissues of mice exposed to 625 ppm butadiene for 5 days contained 3.2 +/- 0.4 and 1.8 +/- 0.5 racemic adducts per 10(6) guanines, respectively, while the amounts of meso-bis-N7G-BD were below the detection limits of our method (1 per 10(7) guanines). Control animals did not contain either bis-N7G-BD lesion. Sensitive and specific quantitative methods for bis-N7G-BD analysis developed in this work provide a unique biomarker of DEB-induced DNA alkylation following exposure to BD.

    • Mutagenesis of the supF gene by stereoisomers of 1,2,3,4-diepoxybutane.
    • Kim, Tretyakova and Wogan
    • Chem Res Toxicol
    • 20 : 5
    • Abstract

    1,2,3,4-diepoxybutane (DEB) is a key metabolite of the important industrial chemical and environmental contaminant, 1,3-butadiene (BD). Although all three optical isomers of DEB, S,S-, R,R-, and meso-DEB, are produced by metabolic processing of BD, S,S-DEB exhibits the most potent genotoxicity and cytotoxicity, followed by R,R- and then meso-DEB. Our previous studies suggested that the observed differences between the biological effects of DEB optical isomers may be structural in their origin. Although S,S- and R,R-DEB produced mainly 1,3-interstrand 1,4-bis-(guan-7-yl)-2,3-butanediol (bis-N7G-BD) cross-links, meso-diepoxide induced equal numbers of intrastrand and interstrand bis-N7G-BD lesions. In the present study, the mutagenicity of the three DEB stereoisomers in the supF gene was investigated. We found that S,S-DEB was the most potent mutagen. Interestingly, mutation specificity and mutant spectra were strongly dependent on DEB stereochemistry. Although A:T to T:A transversions were the major form of mutation observed following treatment with each of the three stereoisomers (35-40%), S,S-DEB induced higher numbers of G:C to A:T transitions, whereas R,R-DEB treatment resulted in a greater frequency of G:C to T:A transversions. Our results are consistent with the stereospecific induction of promutagenic nucleobase adducts other than G-G cross-links by DEB stereoisomers.

    • 1,3-Butadiene exposure and cardiovascular disease.
    • Penn and Snyder
    • Mutat Res
    • 621 : 1-2
    • Abstract

    This review summarizes the epidemiologic, biochemical and genetic evidence associating occupational, environmental or experimental exposure to 1,3-butadiene (BD) with subsequent development of cardiovascular disease, with the primary focus on atherosclerosis. The potential role of BD in the known atherosclerotic effects of environmental tobacco smoke as well as correlations between polymorphisms in BD phase II enzymes and development of atherosclerosis are presented.

    • Development of a physiologically based toxicokinetic model for butadiene and four major metabolites in humans: global sensitivity analysis for experimental design issues.
    • Brochot, Smith and Bois
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 167 : 3
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene (BD) is metabolized in humans and rodents to mutagenic and carcinogenic species. Our previous work has focused on developing a physiologically based toxicokinetic (PBTK) model for BD to estimate its metabolic rate to 1,2-epoxy-3-butene (EB), using exhaled breath BD concentrations in human volunteers exposed by inhalation. In this paper, we extend our BD model to describe the kinetics of its four major metabolites EB, 1,2:3,4-diepoxybutane (DEB), 3-butene-1,2-diol (BDD), and 3,4-epoxy-1,2-butanediol (EBD), and to test whether the extended model and experimental data (to be collected for BD and metabolites in humans) are together adequate to estimate the metabolic rate constants of each of the above chemicals. Global sensitivity analyses (GSA) were conducted to evaluate the relative importance of the model parameters on model outputs during the 20min of exposure and the 40min after exposure ended. All model parameters were studied together with various potentially measurable model outputs: concentrations of BD and EB in exhaled air, concentrations of BD and all metabolites in venous blood, and cumulated amounts of urinary metabolites excreted within 24h. Our results show that pulmonary absorption of BD and subsequent distribution and metabolism in the well-perfused tissues compartment are the critical processes in the toxicokinetics of BD and metabolites. In particular, three parameters influence numerous outputs: the blood:air partition coefficient for BD, the metabolic rate of BD to EB, and the volume of the well-perfused tissues. Other influential parameters include other metabolic rates, some partition coefficients, and parameters driving the gas exchanges (in particular, for BD outputs). GSA shows that the impact of the metabolic rate of BD to EB on the BD concentrations in exhaled air is greatly increased if a few of the model's important parameters (such as the blood:air partition coefficient for BD) are measured experimentally. GSA also shows that all the transformation pathways described in the PBTK model may not be estimable if only data on the studied outputs are collected, and that data on a specific output for a chemical may not inform all the transformations involving that chemical.

    • Site specific N6-(2-hydroxy-3,4-epoxybut-1-yl)adenine oligodeoxynucleotide adducts of 1,2,3,4-diepoxybutane: synthesis and stability at physiological pH.
    • Antsypovich, Quirk-Dorr, Pitts and Tretyakova
    • Chem Res Toxicol
    • 20 : 4
    • Abstract

    1,2,3,4-Diepoxybutane (DEB) is an important metabolite of 1,3-butadiene, a high volume industrial chemical classified as a human and animal carcinogen. DEB is a bifunctional alkylating agent that exhibits both mutagenic and cytotoxic activity, presumably a result of its ability to form bifunctional DNA adducts. Initial reactions of DEB with DNA produce 2-hydroxy-3,4-epoxybut-1-yl (HEB) lesions at guanine and adenine nucleobases. The epoxy group of the monoadduct is inherently reactive and can then undergo further reactions, for example, hydrolysis to the corresponding 2,3,4-trihydroxybutyl adducts and/or second alkylation to yield 2,3-butanediol cross-links. In the present work, synthetic DNA 16-mers containing structurally defined racemic N6-(2-hydroxy-3,4-epoxybut-1-yl)-2'-deoxyadenosine (N6-HEB-dA) adducts (5'-AATTATGTXACGGTAG-3', where X = N6-HEB-dA) were prepared by coupling 6-chloropurine-containing oligodeoxynucleotides with 1-amino-2-hydroxy-3,4-epoxybutane. The latter was generated in situ from the corresponding Fmoc-protected amino epoxide. The N6-HEB-dA-containing DNA oligomer was isolated by reverse-phase HPLC, and the presence of N6-HEB-dA in its structure was confirmed by molecular weight determination and by HPLC-UV-ESI+-MS/MS analyses of enzymatic digests. An independently prepared N6-HEB-dA nucleoside served as an authentic standard. The fate of N6-HEB-dA within DNA at physiological conditions in the presence of various nucleophiles (e.g., cysteine, dG, and the complementary DNA strand) was investigated. Under all conditions tested, N6-HEB-dA rapidly cyclized to produce previously unidentified exocyclic dA lesions (t1/2 < 2 h at physiological conditions). Only trace amounts of hydrolyzed and cross-linked products were detected, suggesting that the rate of cyclization was much greater than the rates of other reactions at the epoxide ring. These results indicate that DEB-induced alkylation of N6-adenine in DNA is unlikely to lead to DNA-DNA cross-linking but instead can result in the formation of exocyclic dA adducts.

    • The importance of 3,4-epoxy-1,2-butanediol and hydroxymethylvinyl ketone in 3-butene-1,2-diol associated mutagenicity.
    • Powley, Walker, Li, Upton and Swenberg
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    1,2:3,4-Diepoxybutane is hypothesized to be the main intermediate involved in mutagenicity following exposure to low levels of 1,3-butadiene (BD) in mice, while metabolites of 3-butene-1,2-diol (BD-diol) are thought to become involved in both rats and mice at higher exposures. BD-diol is biotransformed to hydroxymethylvinyl ketone (HMVK), a potentially mutagenic metabolite, and 3,4-epoxy-1,2-butanediol (EB-diol), a known mutagen. To determine the relative importance of HMVK and EB-diol in BD-diol associated mutagenesis, we have examined the dosimetry of a HMVK derived DNA adduct, as well as EB-diol derived DNA and hemoglobin adducts, in rodents exposed to BD-diol. We previously demonstrated similarities in the shapes of the dose-response curves for EB-diol derived DNA adducts, hemoglobin adducts, and Hprt mutant frequencies in BD-diol exposed rodents, indicating that EB-diol was involved in the mutagenic response associated with BD-diol exposure. To examine the role of HMVK in BD-diol mutagenicity, a method to quantify the alpha-regioisomer of HMVK derived 1,N(2)-propanodeoxyguanosine (alpha-HMVK-dGuo) was developed. The method involved enzymatic hydrolysis of DNA, HPLC purification, and adduct measurement by liquid chromatography - tandem mass spectrometry. Intra- and inter-experimental variabilities were determined to be 2.3-18.2 and 4.1%, respectively. The limit of detection was approximately 5 fmol of analyte standard injected onto the column or 5 fmol/200 microg DNA. The method was used to analyze liver DNA from control female F344 rats and female F344 rats exposed to 36 ppm BD-diol. In addition, liver samples from female Sprague-Dawley rats exposed to 1000 ppm BD were analyzed. alpha-HMVK-dGuo was not detected in any of the samples analyzed. Several possible explanations exist for the negative results including the possibility that alpha-HMVK-dGuo may be a minor adduct or may be efficiently repaired. Alternatively, HMVK itself may be readily detoxified by glutathione (GSH) conjugation. While experiments must be conducted to understand the exact mechanism(s), these results, in addition to published EB-diol derived adduct dosimetry and existing HMVK derived mercapturic acid data, suggest that EB-diol is primarily responsible for BD-diol induced mutagenicity in rodents.

    • Future directions in butadiene risk assessment and the role of cross-species internal dosimetry.
    • Swenberg, Boysen, Georgieva, Bird and Lewis
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    The 2005 International Symposium on the evaluation of butadiene and chloroprene health risks provided the opportunity to consider the past, present and future state of research issues for 1,3-butadiene. Considerable advancements have been made in our knowledge of exposure, metabolism, biomarkers of exposure and effect, and epidemiology. Despite this, uncertainties remain which will impact the human health risk assessment for current worker and environmental exposures. This paper reviews key aspects of recent studies and the role that biomarkers of internal dosimetry can play in addressing low to high exposure, gender, and cross-species differences in butadiene toxicity and metabolism. Considerable information is now available on the detection and quantification of protein adducts formed from the mono-, di- and dihydroxy-epoxide metabolites of butadiene. The diepoxide metabolite appears to play a key role in mutagenesis. Species differences in production of this critical metabolite are reflected by the diepoxybutane-specific hemoglobin adduct, pry-Val. To date, the pry-Val adduct has not been quantifiable in human blood samples from workers with cumulative occupational exposures up to 6.3 ppm-weeks; whereas, the pry-Val was quantifiable in the blood of mice and rats with similar cumulative exposures. Levels in mice were much higher than in rats. Further improvements in analytical sensitivity for the pyr-Val adduct are on the horizon. Epidemiology studies are also described and ongoing efforts promise to help bridge our understanding of past and future risks.

    • International Symposium on the Evaluation of Butadiene and Chloroprene Health Risks.
    • Himmelstein, Baan, Albertini, Bird and Lewis
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    These proceedings represent nearly all the platform and poster presentations given during the International Symposium on Evaluation of Butadiene and Chloroprene Health Risks, held in Charleston, South Carolina, USA, on September 20-22, 2005. The Symposium was attended by 78 participants representing private industry (37), academia (21), government (11), not-for-profit organizations (5), and consulting (4). The program followed the format of previous symposia on butadiene, chloroprene, and isoprene in London UK (2000) and butadiene and isoprene in Blaine, Washington USA (1995). This format enabled the exchange of significant new scientific results and discussion of future research needs. Isoprene was not evaluated during the 2005 Symposium because of lack of new data. For background information, the reader is referred to the proceedings of the London 2000 meeting for a thorough historical perspective and overview of scientific and regulatory issues concerning butadiene, chloroprene, and isoprene [Chem.-Biol. Interact. (2001) 135-136:1-7]. The Symposium consisted of seven sessions: (1) Introduction and Opening Remarks, (2) Butadiene/styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR)--Process Overview, Exposure and Health Effects/Human Studies; (3) Chloroprene--Process Overview, Exposure and Health Effects/Human Studies; (4) Mode of Action/Key Events; (5) Risk Assessment; (6) Poster Presentations; and (7) Panel Discussion and Future Directions. The Symposium concluded with a discussion by all participants of issues that arose throughout the course of the Symposium. The Proceedings of the Symposium published in this Special Issue are organized according to the Sessions outlined above. The purpose of this foreword is to summarize the presentations and their key findings and recommend future research directions for each chemical.

    • Development and testing of a chemical mechanism for atmospheric photochemical transformations of 1,3-butadiene.
    • Sexton, Doyle, Jeffries and Ebersviller
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene (BD) in the atmosphere is a highly reactive hazardous air pollutant, which has a short lifetime and is quickly transformed to reaction products, some of which are also toxic. The ability to predict exposure to BD and its' products requires models with chemical mechanisms which can simulate these transformations. The atmospheric photochemical reactions of BD have been studied in the University of North Carolina Outdoor smog chamber, which has been used for over 30 years to test photochemical mechanisms for air quality simulation models for ozone. Experiments have been conducted under conditions of real sunlight and realistic temperature and humidity to study the transformations of BD and to develop and test chemical mechanisms for the simulation of these processes. Experimental observation of time-concentration data of BD decay and the formation of many products is compared to simulation results. This chemical mechanism can be incorporated into air quality simulation models which can be used to estimate ambient concentrations needed for exposure estimates.

    • PBPK models in risk assessment--A focus on chloroprene.
    • DeWoskin
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Mathematical models are increasingly being used to simulate events in the exposure-response continuum, and to support quantitative predictions of risks to human health. Physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models address that portion of the continuum from an external chemical exposure to an internal dose at a target site. Essential data needed to develop a PBPK model include values of key physiological parameters (e.g., tissue volumes, blood flow rates) and chemical specific parameters (rate of chemical absorption, distribution, metabolism, and elimination) for the species of interest. PBPK models are commonly used to: (1) predict concentrations of an internal dose over time at a target site following external exposure via different routes and/or durations; (2) predict human internal concentration at a target site based on animal data by accounting for toxicokinetic and physiological differences; and (3) estimate variability in the internal dose within a human population resulting from differences in individual pharmacokinetics. Himmelstein et al. [M.W. Himmelstein, S.C. Carpenter, P.M. Hinderliter, Kinetic modeling of beta-chloroprene metabolism. I. In vitro rates in liver and lung tissue fractions from mice, rats, hamsters, and humans, Toxicol. Sci. 79 (1) (2004) 18-27; M.W. Himmelstein, S.C. Carpenter, M.V. Evans, P.M. Hinderliter, E.M. Kenyon, Kinetic modeling of beta-chloroprene metabolism. II. The application of physiologically based modeling for cancer dose response analysis, Toxicol. Sci. 79 (1) (2004) 28-37] developed a PBPK model for chloroprene (2-chloro-1,3-butadiene; CD) that simulates chloroprene disposition in rats, mice, hamsters, or humans following an inhalation exposure. Values for the CD-PBPK model metabolic parameters were obtained from in vitro studies, and model simulations compared to data from in vivo gas uptake studies in rats, hamsters, and mice. The model estimate for total amount of metabolite in lung correlated better with rodent tumor incidence than did the external dose. Based on this PBPK model analytical approach, Himmelstein et al. [M.W. Himmelstein, S.C. Carpenter, M.V. Evans, P.M. Hinderliter, E.M. Kenyon, Kinetic modeling of beta-chloroprene metabolism. II. The application of physiologically based modeling for cancer dose response analysis, Toxicol. Sci. 79 (1) (2004) 28-37; M.W. Himmelstein, R. Leonard, R. Valentine, Kinetic modeling of beta-chloroprene metabolism: default and physiologically-based modeling approaches for cancer dose response, in: IISRP Symposium on Evaluation of Butadiene & Chloroprene Health Effects, September 21, 2005, TBD--reference in this proceedings issue of Chemical-Biological Interactions] propose that observed species differences in the lung tumor dose-response result from differences in CD metabolic rates. The CD-PBPK model has not yet been submitted to EPA for use in developing the IRIS assessment for chloroprene, but is sufficiently developed to be considered. The process that EPA uses to evaluate PBPK models is discussed, as well as potential applications for the CD-PBPK model in an IRIS assessment.

    • Measurement of plasma or urinary metabolites and Hprt mutant frequencies following inhalation exposure of mice and rats to 3-butene-1,2-diol.
    • Walker, McDonald, Meng, Kracko, Bauer, Seilkop, Walker, Henderson and Walker
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Studies were performed to determine if the detoxification pathway of 1,3-butadiene (BD) through 3-butene-1,2-diol (BD-diol) is a major contributor to mutagenicity in BD-exposed mice and rats. First, female and male mice and rats (4-5 weeks old) were exposed by nose-only for 6h to 0, 62.5, 200, 625, or 1250 ppm BD or to 0, 6, 18, 24, or 36 ppm BD-diol primarily to establish BD and BD-diol exposure concentrations that yielded similar plasma levels of BD-diol, and then animals were exposed in inhalation chambers for 4 weeks to BD-diol to determine the mutagenic potency estimates for the same exposure levels and to compare these estimates to those reported for BD-exposed female mice and rats where comparable blood levels of BD-diol were achieved. Measurements of plasma levels of BD-diol (via GC/MS methodology) showed that (i) BD-diol accumulated in a sub-linear fashion during single 6-h exposures to >200 ppm BD; (ii) BD-diol accumulated in a linear fashion during single or repeated exposures to 6-18 ppm BD and then in a sub-linear fashion with increasing levels of BD-diol exposure; and (iii) exposures of mice and rats to 18 ppm BD-diol were equivalent to those produced by 200 ppm BD exposures (with exposures to 36 ppm BD-diol yielding plasma levels approximately 25% of those produced by 625 ppm BD exposures). Measurements of Hprt mutant frequencies (via the T cell cloning assay) showed that repeated exposures to 18 and 36 ppm BD-diol were significantly mutagenic in mice and rats. The resulting data indicated that BD-diol derived metabolites (especially, 1,2-dihydroxy-3,4-epoxybutane) have a narrow range of mutagenic effects confined to high-level BD (>or=200 ppm) exposures, and are responsible for nearly all of the mutagenic response in the rat and for a substantial portion of the mutagenic response in the mouse following high-level BD exposures.

    • Identification of covalent modifications in P450 2E1 by 1,2-epoxy-3-butene in vitro.
    • Boysen, Scarlett, Temple, Combs, Brooks, Borchers and Swenberg
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene is metabolized mainly by cytochrome P450 2E1 to several epoxides that are considered toxic and carcinogenic. The first step of BD metabolism is oxidation to 1,2-epoxy-3-butene (EB), a reactive metabolite. It has been shown that P450s can be inactivated by covalent binding of reactive metabolites to protein or heme. Molecular dosimetry studies have clearly shown that BD metabolism follows a supralinear dose response, suggestive of saturation of metabolic activation. In this study, potential binding sites of EB in human P450 2E1 were identified and modeled to test whether EB covalently binds to residues important for enzyme activity. Commercially available human P450 2E1 was reacted with EB, digested with trypsin and the resulting peptides were analyzed by Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization tandem Time-of-Flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS). The identity of EB modified peptides was confirmed by Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization tandem mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS/MS) sequencing. It was shown that EB binds to four histidine and two tyrosine residues. All modification sites were assigned by at least two adjacent and a minimum of eight peptide specific fragments. Protein modeling revealed that two of these covalent modifications (His(109), His(370)) are clearly associated with the active site, and that their Calpha atoms are located less than 9A from a known inhibitor binding site. In addition, the side chain of His(370) is within 4A of the heme group and its modification is expected to influence the orientation of the heme. The Calpha atom of Tyr(71) is within 14A of the potential inhibitor binding site and within 7A of the flap undergoing conformational change upon ligand binding, potentially placing Tyr(71) near the substrate as it enters and leaves the active site. The data support the hypothesis that EB can inactivate P450 2E1 by covalent modifications and thus add an additional regulatory mechanism for BD metabolism.

    • Chloroprene: overview of studies under consideration for the development of an IRIS assessment.
    • Pagan
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Beta-chloroprene (C(4)H(5)Cl, chloroprene, 2-chloro-1,3-butadiene, CASRN 126-99-8) is a volatile, flammable liquid monomer utilized primarily in the manufacture of neoprene (polychloroprene) elastomer used in belts, hoses, gloves, wire coatings, and tubing. Absorption into the body occurs primarily via the respiratory system and may occur via the gastrointestinal tract or the skin. Once absorbed, chloroprene is widely distributed as evidenced by effects in several target organs including nose and lung, liver, and skin. Chloroprene metabolism is believed to include cytochrome P450 oxidation to a monoepoxide, hydrolysis by epoxide hydrolases, and glutathione conjugation. Similar to 1,3-butadiene, the epoxide is considered to be the toxic moiety, and species differences in metabolic capacity may influence the severity of effects as well as what tissues are affected. EPA has not previously developed an assessment of chloroprene's potential for human health effects. Existing human epidemiological studies offer little data on noncancer effects, and the associations of exposure with increased cancer (liver and lung) mortality reported are inconclusive. Recent epidemiological studies (submitted for publication) could offer information that may impact chloroprene's health assessment. Multiple-site tumors have been reported in rats and mice exposed to chloroprene by inhalation; nevertheless, there are marked differences in strain sensitivities (i.e., tumors in F344 rats versus no tumors in Wistar rats). Recently developed physiologically based toxicokinetic models may allow for the resolution of species and tissue differences and sensitivities as well as exposure-dose-response relationships relevant to humans. (This presentation does not necessarily reflect EPA policy.).

    • A follow-up study of women in the synthetic rubber industry: study methods.
    • Sathiakumar and Delzell
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    BACKGROUND: Concerns about the possible toxic effects of workplace exposures in the synthetic rubber industry have centered on 1,3-butadiene (BD), styrene and dimethyldithiocarbamate (DMDTC). Our previous mortality studies of over 17,000 male synthetic rubber workers found an excess of leukemia that may be due to BD or BD plus other chemicals. Experimental studies have shown that BD produces mammary tumors in female mice and rats and ovarian tumors in female mice. AIM: This paper presents the methods of a follow-up study that evaluates the mortality experience of women employed in the North American synthetic rubber industry. METHODS: Women employed for at least 1 day at any of eight North American styrene-butadiene rubber plants were followed up from 1943 to 2002. Identifying and work history information were obtained from personnel records. Estimated quantitative exposure to BD, styrene and DMDTC, developed for our previous study of men, were used in this study. External analyses use the standardized mortality ratios (SMRs) to compare the cohort's cause-specific mortality rates to the rates of the female general population of the states or the province where the plants are located. Internal analyses use the Poisson regression and Cox proportional hazards models to examine specific cancer mortality rates in relation to BD, styrene and DMDTC exposure, by comparing an exposed cohort subgroup with the rate of unexposed cohort members.

    • 1,3-Butadiene and leukemia among synthetic rubber industry workers: exposure-response relationships.
    • Cheng, Sathiakumar, Graff, Matthews and Delzell
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Previous research updated the mortality experience of North American synthetic rubber industry workers during the period 1944-1998, determined if leukemia and other cancers were associated with several employment factors and carried out Poisson regression analysis to examine exposure-response associations between estimated exposure to 1,3-butadiene (BD) or other chemicals and cancer. The present study used Cox regression procedures to examine further the exposure-response relationship between several unlagged and lagged, continuous, time-dependent BD exposure indices (BD parts per million (ppm)-years, the total number of exposures to BD concentrations >100 ppm ("peaks") and average intensity of BD) and leukemia, lymphoid neoplasms and myeloid neoplasms. All three BD exposure indices were associated positively with leukemia. Using continuous, untransformed BD ppm-years the regression coefficient (beta) from an analysis that controlled only for age was 2.9 x 10(-4) (p<0.01); the regression coefficient adjusted for all covariates (age, year of birth, race, plant, years since hire and dimethyldithiocarbamate) was similar in magnitude (beta=3.0 x 10(-4), p=0.04). Lagging exposure had minimal impact on the results for leukemia for any of the three BD exposure indices. In models that controlled only for age, lymphoid neoplasms were associated with BD ppm-years and myeloid neoplasms, with BD peaks, but neither trend was statistically significant after adjusting for multiple covariates. The present results support the presence of a causal relationship between high cumulative exposure and high intensity of exposure to BD and leukemia.

    • Validation of 1,3-butadiene exposure estimates for workers at a synthetic rubber plant.
    • Sathiakumar, Delzell, Cheng, Lynch, Sparks and Macaluso
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    PURPOSE: This investigation assessed the validity of estimates of exposure to 1,3-butadiene (BD) developed for a plant included in a study of mortality among synthetic rubber industry workers. The estimates were developed without using historical measurement data and have not been validated previously. METHODS: Personal BD measurements came from an exposure-monitoring program initiated in 1977. For each job, we computed the year-specific difference between the BD estimate and the mean of BD measurements. We also computed rank correlation coefficients and calculated the mean, across all measurements, of the difference between the estimate and the measurement. RESULTS: The mean BD concentration was 5.2 ppm for 4978 measurements and 4.7 ppm for the corresponding estimates. The mean difference between estimates and measurements was -0.50 ppm (standard deviation, 26.5 ppm) overall and ranged from -227.9 to +27.0 ppm among all 306 job/year combinations. Estimates were correlated with measurements for all 306 combinations (rank correlation coefficient, r=0.45, p<0.0001), for 82 combinations pertaining to jobs that were well-defined by a specific set of tasks and typically found in styrene-BD rubber (SBR) plants (r=0.81, p<0.0001), for 70 combinations pertaining to jobs that were well-defined but not typical (r=0.29, p=0.01) and for 92 combinations pertaining to poorly-defined jobs typically found in SBR plants (r=0.56, <0.0001). Estimates were not correlated with measurements for poorly defined jobs not typically found in SBR plants (r=0.01, p=0.93). For well-defined typical SBR jobs with measurement means that were over 7.0 ppm, estimates were consistently lower than measurements. CONCLUSIONS: Possible reasons for differences between estimates and measurements included faulty assumptions used in developing BD estimates, unstable or nonrepresentive measurements and errors in linking measurement data to the job-exposure matrix. Exposure misclassification may have been more severe for subjects from the validation study plant than for subjects from other plants in the mortality study. BD estimates for typical SBR jobs, which comprise most operations at all but one of the plants in the mortality study, appeared to be useful for ranking workers by cumulative exposure. Uncertainty analyses would enhance the utility of the BD exposure estimates for quantitative risk assessment.

    • Exposure and risk assessment of 1,3-butadiene in Japan.
    • Higashino, Mita, Yoshikado, Iwata and Nakanishi
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene is on the list of Substances Requiring Priority Action published by the Central Environmental Council of Japan in 1996. Emission of 1,3-butadiene has been controlled by a voluntary reduction program since 1997. Although the industrial emission of 1,3-butadiene in Japan has decreased in recent years, primarily due to a voluntary industrial emissions reduction program, the risks of exposure to it remain largely unknown. We assessed the risks and consequences of exposure to 1,3-butadiene on human health. A remarkable advantage of our risk assessment approach is the detailed assessment of exposure. Previously, we developed two different models that can be applied for the assessment of exposure: the first, the AIST-ADMER model estimates regional concentration distributions, whereas the second, the METI-LIS model estimates concentration distributions in the vicinity of factories. Both models were used for the assessment of exposure to 1,3-butadiene. Using exposure concentration and carcinogenic potency determined and reported by Environment Canada and Health Canada, we evaluated the excess lifetime cancer risk for persons exposed to 1,3-butadiene over the course of a lifetime. The results suggested that the majority of the population in Japan has an excess lifetime cancer risk of less than 10(-5), whereas a small number of people living close to industrial sources had a risk of greater than 10(-5). The results of the present assessment also showed that 1,3-butadiene in the general environment originates primarily from automobile emissions, such that a countermeasure of reducing emissions from cars is expected to be effective at reducing the total cancer risk among Japanese. On the other hand, individual risks among a population living in the vicinity of certain industrial sources were found to be significantly higher than those of the population living elsewhere, such that a reduction in emissions from a small number of specific industrial sources should be realized in order to reduce the high level of individual risk. Based on the results of our assessment, the Industrial Structure Council of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) in Japan decided to announce that the voluntary reduction program had been successful, and that emissions reductions should no longer be targeted across all industries in general, but instead that such reductions should be carried out in a small number of selected factories that emit excessively large amounts of emissions.

    • Chromosomal aberration frequencies determined by conventional methods: Parallel increases over time in the region of a petrochemical industry and throughout the Czech Republic.
    • Sram, Rössner, Beskid, Bavorova, Ocadlikova, Solansky and Albertini
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    The rationale for cytogenetic monitoring to determine if safe maximum allowable concentrations (MAC) of genotoxic chemicals are being maintained in a workplace is that exposure levels that do not increase chromosomal aberration frequencies are without harmful effects. Such monitoring, widely used in occupational health programs in the Czech Republic (CR), includes workers exposed to 1,3-butadiene (BD) or other chemicals. Studies of BD exposed workers in the years 1992, 1993, 1994, 1998, and 2004 compared mean frequencies of cells carrying chromosomal aberrations (frequency of aberrant cells=%AB.C.) in exposed workers with those in non-exposed matched controls in the same plant or in other individuals living in the region of the same petrochemical industry. Workers potentially exposed to acrylonitrile at this site were also evaluated in 2000, along with another unexposed matched control group. The %AB.C. values of exposed workers and their controls were also compared with reference values determined for normal individuals (ages 20-59 years) throughout the CR. Substantial discrepancies were noted between subjects in the region of the petrochemical industry (exposed workers and controls) for the years 2000 and 2004 and the reference CR-wide normal values that had been determined during an earlier time period. The matched non-exposed controls at the petrochemical industry site showed a mean %AB.C. value of 1.56+/-1.23% (N=25) in 1998; this rose to a mean of 2.65+/-2.29% (N=33) in 2000. In 2004, values for non-exposed matched controls at the industry site were 2.64+/-1.75% for males (N=25) and 2.38+/-1.74% (N=26) for females. However, the earlier determined CR-wide %AB.C. mean reference values for normal individuals were 1.77+/-1.16% (N=1305) for the interval 1977-1988 and 1.45+/-1.17% (N=2140) for the interval 1991-1999. As both reference values are substantially lower than those determined in 2000 and 2004 for the non-exposed matched controls at the petrochemical industry site, an analysis of the CR-wide mean normal individual reference values for this same 2000-2004 period was conducted. Unexpectedly, it was found that this reference value too had risen to 1.95+/-1.36% (N=1045) and was comparable to the concurrent matched control values at the petrochemical industry site where the monitoring studies were conducted. This substantial increase in %AB.C. values in 2000 and 2004, therefore, has occurred throughout the CR and is probably unrelated to chemicals uniquely present at the petrochemical industry site.

    • Spatial and temporal trend evaluation of ambient concentrations of 1,3-butadiene and chloroprene in Texas.
    • Grant, Leopold, McCant and Honeycutt
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    This paper provides information on 1,3-butadiene (BD) and chloroprene as atmospheric pollutants in Texas and reviews available emission estimates and monitoring data. Ambient BD concentrations in most areas of Texas are predominantly influenced by on-road and off-road vehicular emissions or biomass burning, since BD is a product of combustion. However, large industrial point sources of BD emissions in Texas locally influence ambient concentrations. Total industrial BD emissions to the atmosphere in Texas for 2003 were estimated at 695 tonnes per year (TPY), approximately 70% of the total reported national industrial BD air emissions. Since 1998, there have not been any large industrial sources of chloroprene emissions in Texas, and total industrial chloroprene emissions for 2003 was estimated at only 0.09 TPY. Chloroprene was never detected at air monitoring sites. In 2003, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) monitored BD ambient air concentrations at 57 sites, some of which have been operational since 1992. These air monitors provide information on ambient BD concentrations in Texas and allow spatial and temporal trend evaluation. In 2003, annual average concentrations at monitoring sites in Texas ranged from less than the reporting limit of 0.01 to 3.2 parts per billion by volume (ppbv) with an overall average of 0.2 ppbv. This overall average is reduced to 0.1 ppbv if BD data from monitoring sites in Port Neches and Milby Park in Houston, which are located downwind of significant point sources of BD, are excluded. Ambient air monitoring has been conducted in Port Neches and in Milby Park in Houston since 1996 and 1999, respectively. At the Port Neches monitor, trend evaluation indicates that ambient concentrations of BD have declined since 1996 due to cooperative agreements with industries emitting BD. Annual average BD concentrations at the Port Neches monitor decreased from 8.3ppbv in 1996 to 1.3 ppbv in 2003, giving an 8-year average of 3.8 ppbv. Annual average BD concentrations at the Milby Park monitor varied between 2.1 and 4.4 ppbv from 1999 through 2003, giving a 5-year average of 3.1 ppbv. The results of cancer cluster studies based on Cancer Registry 1995-2001 incidence data and 1993-2002 mortality data conducted by the Texas Department of State Health Services for zip codes 77017/77012 (Houston) and 77651 (Port Neches) will be presented.

    • Molecular epidemiological studies in 1,3-butadiene exposed Czech workers: female-male comparisons.
    • Albertini, Sram, Vacek, Lynch, Rossner, Nicklas, McDonald, Boysen, Georgieva and Swenberg
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Results of a recent molecular epidemiological study of 1,3-butadiene (BD) exposed Czech workers, conducted to compare female to male responses, have confirmed and extended the findings of a previously reported males only study (HEI Research Report 116, 2003). The initial study found that urine concentrations of the metabolites 1,2-dihydroxy-4-(acetyl) butane (M1) and 1-dihydroxy-2-(N-acetylcysteinyl)-3-butene (M2) and blood concentrations of the hemoglobin adducts N-[2-hydroxy-3-butenyl] valine (HB-Val) and N-[2,3,4-trihydroxy-butyl] valine (THB-Val) constitute excellent biomarkers of exposure, both being highly correlated with BD exposure levels, and that GST genotypes modulate at least one metabolic pathway, but that irreversible genotoxic effects such as chromosome aberrations and HPRT gene mutations are neither associated with BD exposure levels nor with worker genotypes (GST [glutathione-S-transferase]-M1, GSTT1, CYP2E1 (5' promoter), CYP2E1 (intron 6), EH [epoxide hydrolase] 113, EH139, ADH [alcohol dehydrogenase]2 and ADH3). The no observed adverse effect level (NOAEL) for chromosome aberrations and HPRT mutations was 1.794 mg/m(3) (0.812 ppm)--the mean exposure level for the highest exposed worker group in this initial study. The second Czech study, reported here, initiated in 2003, included 26 female control workers, 23 female BD exposed workers, 25 male control workers and 30 male BD exposed workers (some repeats from the first study). Multiple external exposure measurements (10 full 8-h shift measures by personal monitoring per worker) over a 4-month period before biological sample collections showed that BD workplace levels were lower than in the first study. Mean 8-h TWA exposure levels were 0.008 mg/m(3) (0.0035 ppm) and 0.397 mg/m(3) (0.180 ppm) for female controls and exposed, respectively, but with individual single 8-h TWA values up to 9.793 mg/m(3) (4.45 ppm) in the exposed group. Mean male 8-h TWA exposure levels were 0.007 mg/m(3) (0.0032 ppm) and 0.808 mg/m(3) (0.370 ppm) for controls and exposed, respectively; however, the individual single 8-h TWA values up to 12.583 mg/m(3) (5.72 ppm) in the exposed group. While the urine metabolite concentrations for both M1 and M2 were elevated in exposed compared to control females, the differences were not significant, possibly due to the relatively low BD exposure levels. For males, with greater BD exposures, the concentrations of both metabolites were significantly elevated in urine from exposed compared to control workers. As in the first study, urine metabolite excretion patterns in both sexes revealed conjugation to be the minor detoxification pathway (yielding the M2 metabolite) but both M1 and M2 concentration values were lower in males in this second study compared to their concentrations in the first, reflecting the lower external exposures of males in this second study compared to the first. Of note, females showed lower concentrations of both M1 and M2 metabolites in the urine per unit of BD exposure than did males while exhibiting the same M1/(M1+M2) ratio, reflecting the same relative utilization of the hydrolytic (producing M1) and the conjugation (producing M2) detoxification pathways as males. Assays for the N,N-(2,3-dihydroxy-1,4-butadyl) valine (pyr-Val) hemoglobin (Hb) adduct, which is specific for the highly genotoxic 1,2,3,4-diepoxybutane (DEB) metabolite of BD, have been conducted on blood samples from all participants in this second Czech study. Any adduct that may have been present was below the limits of quantitation (LOQ) for this assay for all samples, indicating that production of this important BD metabolite in humans is below levels produced in both mice and rats exposed to as little as 1.0 ppm BD by inhalation (J.A. Swenberg, M.G. Bird, R.J. Lewis, Future directions in butadiene risk assessment, Chem. Biol. Int. (2006), this issue). Results of assays for the HB-Val and THB-Val hemoglobin adducts are pending. HPRT mutations, determined by cloning assays, and multiple measures of chromosome level changes (sister-chromatid exchange

    • Age-, gender-, and species-dependent mutagenicity in T cells of mice and rats exposed by inhalation to 1,3-butadiene.
    • Meng, Walker, McDonald, Henderson, Carter, Cook, McCash, Torres, Bauer, Seilkop, Upton, Georgieva, Boysen, Swenberg and Walker
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Experiments were performed: (i) to investigate potential age- and gender-dependent differences in mutagenic responses in T cells following exposures of B6C3F1 mice and F344 rats by inhalation for 2 weeks to 0 or 1250 ppm butadiene (BD), and (ii) to determine if exposures for 2 weeks to 62.5 ppm BD produce a mutagenic effect in female rats. To evaluate the effect of age on mutagenic response, mutant manifestation curves for splenic T cells of female mice exposed at 8-9 weeks of age were defined by measuring Hprt mutant frequencies (MFs) at multiple time points after BD exposure using a T cell cloning assay and comparing the resulting mutagenic potency estimate (calculated as the difference of areas under the mutant manifestation curves of treated versus control animals) to that reported for female mice exposed to BD in the same fashion beginning at 4-5 weeks of age. The shapes of the mutant T cell manifestation curves for spleens were different [e.g., the maximum BD-induced MFs in older mice (8.0+/-1.0 [S.D.]x10(-6)) and younger mice (17.8+/-6.1 x 10(-6)) were observed at 8 and 5 weeks post-exposure, respectively], but the mutagenic burden was the same for both age groups. To assess the effect of gender on mutagenic response, female and male rodents were exposed to BD at 4-5 weeks of age and Hprt MFs were measured when maximum MFs are expected to occur post-exposure. The resulting data demonstrated that the pattern for mutagenic susceptibility from high-level BD exposure is female mice>male mice>female rats>male rats. Exposures of female rats to 62.5 ppm BD caused a minor but significant mutagenic response compared with controls (n=16/group; P=0.03). These results help explain part of the differing outcomes/interpretations of data in earlier Hprt mutation studies in BD-exposed rodents.

    • Effect of n-hexane on the disposition and toxicity of the 1,3-butadiene metabolite 3-butene-1,2-diol.
    • Iba and Bird
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    3-Butene-1,2-diol (butenediol), a major metabolite of 1,3-butadiene (butadiene), can undergo either detoxification or biotransformation to potentially toxic metabolites, including 3,4-epoxy-1,2-butanediol and hydroxymethylvinyl ketone (HMVK). Butadiene exposure can occur concomitantly with hexanes, which share common biotransformation pathways with butadiene. To determine the potential influence of hexane co-exposure on butadiene toxicity, the present study examined the effect of n-hexane on butenediol disposition [as measured by urinary excretion of (N-acetyl-S-(3,4-dihydroxybutyl)-L-cysteine) (MI level)] and genotoxicity (as measured by the frequency of bone marrow micronucleated erythrocytes) and acute toxicity (as measured by body weight changes) in the rat. The results show that butenediol was not genotoxic to adult or immature rats but was acutely toxic to adult but not immature rats. The results also suggest that n-hexane co-exposure may attenuate the acute toxicity by butenediol in adult rats and that immature rats may be less sensitive than adults to the acute toxicity.

    • Cancer risk assessment for 1,3-butadiene: dose-response modeling from an epidemiological perspective.
    • Sielken, Valdez-Flores, Gargas, Kirman, Teta and Delzell
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    The dose-response assessment of the association between 1,3-butadiene (BD) and leukemia mortality among workers in the North American synthetic rubber industry is explored. Analyses are based on the most recent University of Alabama at Birmingham epidemiological study and exposure estimation. The U.S. EPA Science Advisory Board recommendations of using the most recent data and giving consideration to peak exposures to BD have been followed. If cumulative BD ppm-years is to be used as the predictor of the leukemia rate ratio, then the performance of that predictor is statistically significantly improved if the slope in the predictor is estimated with age and the cumulative number of BD peaks (where a BD peak is any exposure, regardless of duration, to a BD concentration above 100 ppm) added as categorical covariates. After age and the cumulative number of BD peaks are incorporated as categorical covariates in the Poisson regression model, the estimated concentration (EC(001)) corresponding to an excess risk of 0.001 as a result of continuous environmental exposure is 11.2 ppm; however, the estimated slope for BD cumulative ppm-years in the linear rate ratio for leukemia used to derive this EC(001) is not statistically significantly different from zero. Sensitivity analyses using alternative models indicate either essentially no risk or estimated EC(001) values of 9 and 77 ppm. Analyses suggesting the absence of a statistically significant low-dose risk versus cumulative BD ppm-years are presented. Sensitivity analyses of other malignant neoplasms of lymphatic and hematopoietic tissue (specifically, lymphoid and myeloid neoplasms) resulted in conclusions about the dose-response modeling methodology that were supportive of the methodology used for leukemia.

    • Evaluation of genetic alterations in cancer-related genes in lung and brain tumors from B6C3F1 mice exposed to 1,3-butadiene or chloroprene.
    • Ton, Hong, Devereux, Melnick, Sills and Kim
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene and chloroprene are multisite carcinogens in B6C3F1 mice with the strongest tumor response being the induction of lung neoplasms in females. Incidence of brain tumors in mice exposed to 1,3-butadiene was equivocal. This article reviews the efforts of our laboratory and others to uncover the mechanisms of butadiene and chloroprene induced lung and brain tumor responses in the B6C3F1 mouse. The formation of lung tumors by these chemicals involved mutations in the K-ras cancer gene and loss of heterozygosity in the region of K-ras on distal chromosome 6, while alterations in p53 and p16 were implicated in brain tumorigenesis.

    • Quantitative analysis of N-terminal valine peptide adducts specific for 1,2-epoxy-3-butene.
    • Georgieva, Boysen, Upton, Jayaraj, Gold and Swenberg
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Butadiene (BD) metabolism shows gender, species and concentration dependency, making the extrapolation of animal results to humans complex. BD is metabolized mainly by cytochrome P450 2E1 to three epoxides, 1,2-epoxy-3-butene (EB), 1,2;3,4-diepoxybutane (DEB) and 1,2-epoxy-butanediol (EB-diol). For accurate risk assessment it is important to elucidate species differences in the internal formation of the individual epoxides in order to assign the relative risks associated with their different mutagenic potencies. Analysis of N-terminal globin adducts is a common approach for monitoring the internal formation of BD derived epoxides. Our long term strategy is to develop an LC-MS/MS method for simultaneous detection of all three BD hemoglobin adducts. This approach is modeled after the recently reported immunoaffinity LC-MS/MS method for the cyclic N,N-(2,3-dihydroxy-1,4-butadyil)-valine (pyr-Val, derived from DEB). We report herein the analysis of the EB-derived 2-hydroxyl-3-butenyl-valine peptide (HB-Val). The procedure utilizes trypsin hydrolysis of globin and immunoaffinity (IA) purification of alkylated heptapeptides. Quantitation is based on LC-MS/MS monitoring of the transition from the singly charged molecular ion of HB-Val (1-7) to the a(1) fragment. Human HB-Val (1-11) was synthesized and used for antibody production. As internal standard, the labeled rat-[(13)C(5)(15)N]-Val (1-11) was prepared through direct alkylation of the corresponding peptide with EB. Standards were characterized and quantified by LC-MS/MS and LC-UV. The method was validated with different amounts of human HB-Val standard. The recovery was >75% and coefficient of variation <25%. The LOQ was set to 100 fmol/injection. For a proof of principal experiment, globin samples from male and female rats exposed to 1000 ppm BD for 90 days were analyzed. The amounts of HB-Val present were 268.2+/-56 and 350+/-70 pmol/g (mean+/-S.D.) for males and females, respectively. No HB-Val was detected in controls. These data are much lower compared to previously reported values measured by GC-MS/MS. The difference may be due higher specificity of the LC-MS/MS method to the N-terminal peptide from the alpha-chain versus derivatization of both alpha- and beta-chain by Edman degradation, and possible instability of HB-Val adducts during long term storage (about 10 years) between the analyses. These differences will be resolved by examining recently collected samples, using the same internal standard for parallel analysis by GC-MS/MS and LC-MS/MS. Based on our experience with pyr-Val adduct assay we anticipate that this assay will be suitable for evaluation of HB-Val in multiple species.

    • Atmospheric photochemical transformations enhance 1,3-butadiene-induced inflammatory responses in human epithelial cells: The role of ozone and other photochemical degradation products.
    • Doyle, Sexton, Jeffries and Jaspers
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Chemistry of hazardous air pollutants has been studied for many years, yet little is known about how these chemicals, once reacted within urban atmospheres, affect healthy and susceptible individuals. Once released into the atmosphere, 1,3-butadiene (BD) reacts with hydroxyl radicals and ozone (created by photochemical processes), to produce many identified and unidentified products. Once this transformation has occurred, the toxic potential of atmospheric pollutants such as BD in the ambient environment is currently unclear. During this study, environmental irradiation chambers (also called smog chambers), utilizing natural sunlight, were used to create photochemical transformations of BD. The smog chamber/in vitro exposure system was designed to investigate the toxicity of chemicals before and after photochemical reactions and to investigate interactions with the urban atmosphere using representative in vitro samples. In this study, we determined the relative toxicity and inflammatory gene expression induced by coupling smog chamber atmospheres with an in vitro system to expose human respiratory epithelial cells to BD, BDs photochemical degradation products, or the equivalent ozone generated within the photochemical mixture. Exposure to the photochemically generated products of BD (primarily acrolein, acetaldehyde, formaldehyde, furan and ozone) induced significant increases in cytotoxicity, IL-8, and IL-6 gene expression compared to a synthetic mixture of primary products that was created by injecting the correct concentrations of the detected products from the irradiation experiments. Interestingly, exposure to the equivalent levels of ozone generated during the photochemical transformation of BD did not induce the same level of inflammatory cytokine release for either exposure protocol, suggesting that the effects from ozone alone do not account for the entire response in the irradiation experiments. These results indicate that BDs full photochemical product generation and interactions, rather than ozone alone, must be carefully evaluated when investigating the possible adverse health effects to BD exposures. The research presented here takes into account that photochemical transformations of hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) does generate a dynamic exposure system and therefore provides a more realistic approach to estimate the toxicity of ambient air pollutants once they are released into the atmosphere.

    • Mutagenicity of stereochemical configurations of 1,2-epoxybutene and 1,2:3,4-diepoxybutane in human lymphblastoid cells.
    • Meng, Redetzke, Hackfeld, Hodge, Walker and Walker
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    The carcinogenicity of 1,3-butadiene (BD) is related to its bioactivation to several DNA-reactive metabolites; accumulating evidence suggests that the stereochemistry of these BD intermediates may play a significant role in the mutagenic and carcinogenic actions of the parent compound. The objective of this study was to evaluate the cytotoxicity and mutagenicity of stereochemical forms of 1,2-epoxybutene (EB) and 1,2:3,4-diepoxybutane (DEB), two genotoxic BD metabolites, in a human lymphoblastoid cell line, TK6. Cytotoxicity was measured by comparing cloning efficiencies in chemical-exposed cells versus those in control cells. The hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (HPRT) and thymidine kinase (TK) mutant frequencies (MFs) were measured using a cell cloning assay. HPRT mutants collected from cells exposed to the three forms of DEB were analyzed by PCR to characterize large genetic alterations. All the three stereoisomers of DEB caused increased HPRT and TK MFs compared to the concurrent control samples. There were no significant differences in cytotoxicity or mutagenicity among the three isomers of DEB in TK6 cells. Molecular analysis of HPRT mutants revealed similar distributions of types of mutations among the three isomers of DEB. There were also no statistically significant differences in mutagenic efficiencies between the two isomers of EB in TK6 cells. These results were consistent with the in vivo findings that there was little difference in the mutagenic efficiencies of racemic-DEB versus meso-DEB in rodents. Thus, in terms of mutagenic efficiency, stereochemical configurations of EB and DEB are not likely to play a significant role in the mutagenicity and carcinogenicity of BD.

    • Synthesis and mutagenesis of the butadiene-derived N3 2'-deoxyuridine adducts.
    • Fernandes, Hackfeld, Kozekov, Hodge and Lloyd
    • Chem Res Toxicol
    • 19 : 7
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene is a known carcinogen and mutagen that acts through a variety of metabolic intermediates that react with DNA, forming stable and unstable lesions on dG, dA, dC, and dT. The N3 2'-deoxyuridine adducts are a highly stable, stereoisomeric mixture of adducts derived from the reaction of cytosine with the monoepoxide metabolite of butadiene, followed by spontaneous deamination. In this study, the phosphoramidites and subsequent oligodeoxynucleotides containing the N3 2'-deoxyuridine adducts have been constructed and characterized. Using a single-stranded shuttle vector DNA, the mutagenic potential of these adducts has been tested following replication in mammalian cells. Replication past the N3 2'-deoxyuridine adducts was found to be highly mutagenic with an overall mutation yield of approximately 97%. The major mutations that were observed were C to T transitions and C to A transversions. In vitro, these adducts posed a complete block to both the Klenow fragment of Escherichia coli polymerase I and polymerase epsilon, while these lesions significantly blocked polymerase delta. These data suggested a possible involvement of bypass polymerases in the in vivo replication of these lesions. Overall, these findings indicate that the N3 2'-deoxyuridine adducts are highly mutagenic lesions that may contribute to butadiene-mediated carcinogenesis.

    • Micronuclei, DNA single-strand breaks and DNA-repair activity in mice exposed to 1,3-butadiene by inhalation.
    • Vodicka, Stetina, Smerak, Vodickova, Naccarati, Barta and Hemminki
    • Mutat Res
    • 608 : 1
    • Abstract

    We investigated single-strand breaks and endonuclease III-sensitive sites in DNA along with gamma-irradiation-specific DNA-repair activity in hepatocytes and frequencies of micronuclei in polychromatic bone-marrow erythrocytes of male NMRI mice (2 months old, weight 30-35 g) during sub-acute inhalation exposure to 1,3-butadiene (28 days, 500 mg/m3) and up to 28 days after the exposure. Concentrations of 1,3-butadiene in blood, an indicator of internal exposure, moderately increased during the exposure period. The most interesting finding was that gamma-irradiation-specific DNA-repair activity gradually increased during exposure, being significantly higher compared with control levels on days 7 and 28 of exposure (P = 0.005 and 0.035, respectively), reaching a maximum on day 1 after the termination of exposure (P = 0.003) and then returning to control levels. A significant correlation between gamma-irradiation-specific DNA-repair activity and the concentration of 1,3-butadiene in blood (R = 0.866, P = 0.050) supports a possible induction of DNA-repair activity by the exposure to 1,3-butadiene and formation of its metabolites. The initial increase in micronucleus frequency (micronuclei per 1000 cells) in the exposed mice continuously decreased from 20.4 +/- 5.1 (day 3) to 15.1 +/- 3.2 (day 28) within the exposure period, and subsequently from 12.4 +/- 5.1 to 4.6 +/- 1.6 in the period following termination of the 1,3-butadiene exposure, while micronucleus frequencies in control animals were significantly lower (from 1.7 +/- 1.5 to 4.2 +/- 0.8).

    • Synthesis of DNA oligodeoxynucleotides containing structurally defined N6-(2-hydroxy-3-buten-1-yl)-adenine adducts of 3,4-epoxy-1-butene.
    • Dorr, Murphy and Tretyakova
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    3,4-Epoxy-1-butene (EB) is generated by cytochrome P450-mediated epoxidation of 1,3-butadiene (BD), an important environmental and industrial chemical classified as a probable human carcinogen. The ability of EB to induce point mutations at GC and AT base pairs has been attributed to its reactions with DNA to form covalent nucleobase adducts. Guanine alkylation is preferred at the endocyclic N7 nitrogen, while adenine can be modified at the N1-, N3-, N7-, and the N6 positions. For each of these sites, a pair of regioisomeric 2-hydroxy-3-buten-1-yl and 1-hydroxy-3-buten-2-yl adducts is produced as a result of epoxide ring opening at the terminal C-4 or the internal C-3 carbon position of EB, respectively. The N6-EB-adenine adducts are of particular interest because of their stability in DNA, potentially leading to their accumulation in vivo. In the present work, synthetic DNA oligomers containing structurally defined N6-(2-hydroxy-3-buten-1-yl)-dA (N6-HB-dA) adducts were prepared for the first time by a postoligomerization approach that involved coupling 6-chloropurine-containing DNA with synthetic 1-amino-3-buten-2-ol. N6-HB-dA-containing DNA oligomers were isolated by reversed phase HPLC, and the presence of N6-HB-dA in their structure was confirmed by molecular weight determination from HPLC-ESI- -MS of the intact strands and by HPLC-ESI+-MS/MS and MS/MS/MS analyses of the enzymatic digests using synthetic N6-HB-dA as an authentic standard. N6-HB-dA-containing oligomers generated in this study will be used for structural and biological studies.

    • Analyses of (1-chloroethenyl)oxirane headspace and hemoglobin N-valine adducts in erythrocytes indicate selective detoxification of (1-chloroethenyl)oxirane enantiomers.
    • Hurst and Ali
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Chloroprene (2-chloro-1,3-butadiene, CAS 126-99-8, CP) is a colorless volatile liquid used in manufacture of polychloroprene, a synthetic rubber polymer. National Toxicology Program inhalation studies of CP in rats and mice gave clear evidence of carcinogenic activity. CP is metabolized by CYP2E1 to electrophilic epoxides, including R- and S-(1-chloroethenyl)oxirane (CEO), which form adducts with nucleic acids and other nucleophiles including glutathione and hemoglobin. As detection of these epoxide metabolites in vivo is technically challenging, measurements of CEO-Hb adducts may provide biomarkers of exposure to bioactivated metabolites of CP. The present studies involved exposure of C57BL/6 mouse erythrocytes (RBC) in vitro to pure enantiomers of CEO. Headspace analysis of CEO using Cyclodex-B capillary GC/MS with selected ion monitoring enabled separation, specific detection, and quantification of CEO enantiomers as reactions proceeded in vitro with RBC. These analyses indicated that R-CEO was much more persistent when incubated in vitro with RBC, while S-CEO disappeared rapidly. After periods of exposure of RBC to various concentrations of R- or S-CEO, erythrocytes were lysed and globin isolated. Covalent adducts, formed by reaction of CEO with N-terminal valine in Hb, were analyzed following Edman cleavage and trimethylsilylation. SIM-GC/MS analyses using a 5%-phenyl-dimethylsiloxane capillary column enabled quantification of CEO-Hb adducts. These analyses produced two chromatographic peaks of CEO-valine adduct derivatives, which were tentatively identified from mass spectra, reaction, and abundance data to be 1-(3-chloro-2-trimethylsilyloxybut-3-en-1-yl)-5-isopropyl-3-phenyl-2-thiohydantoin and 1-[2-chloro-1-(trimethylsilyloxymethyl)prop-2-en-1-yl]-5-isopropyl-3-phenyl-2-thiohydantoin. Analyses quantified significantly greater levels of adducts formed from R-CEO than from S-CEO. Studies involving pretreatment of RBC with glutathione-depleting diethyl maleate diminished the selective detoxification of S-CEO, and suggest enantiomeric selectivity of mouse glutathione-S-transferase as a mechanism of differential detoxification of CEO enantiomers. These results indicate more rapid detoxification of S-CEO by mouse RBC in vitro, while R-CEO may persist to react with cellular nucleophiles.

    • Mass spectral analyses of hemoglobin adducts formed after in vitro exposure of erythrocytes to hydroxymethylvinyl ketone.
    • Barshteyn, Krause and Elfarra
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    Hydroxymethylvinyl ketone (HMVK) is a reactive oxidation product of 3-butene-1,2-diol, a metabolite of 1,3-butadiene. The potential for HMVK (0.1 and 1mM) to form hemoglobin (Hb) adducts in erythrocytes from Sprague-Dawley rats was investigated at physiological conditions (pH 7.4, 37 degrees C) using electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI/MS). With the 0.1mM HMVK globin samples, the results indicate HMVK adduction on the alpha2, beta2 and beta3 chains. With the 1.0mM HMVK globin samples, adducts were detected on the beta2 and beta3 chains. However, no correlation was observed between incubation time and the extent of adduct formation, and additional adducts were detected when globin samples were fractionated by HPLC before the ESI/MS analyses. For specific localizations of adducts on the globin chains, trypsin digested peptides from the 1mM HMVK globin samples were subjected to liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry analyses. The results, which are consistent with formation of HMVK adducts on several specific peptides within the alpha- and beta-chains, suggest selectivity in the interaction of HMVK with the different cysteine residues in Hb. Because adducts were also detected in peptides containing no cysteine residues and multiple HMVK moieties were detected on some of the cysteine-containing peptides, the results suggest other amino acids may be also reactive with HMVK. Adduct profiles and their relative intensities were consistent between the 1 and 2h samples providing evidence for the HMVK reactions being fast and selective. The finding that fewer peptides were adducted in the 0.1mM HMVK globin samples provides further evidence for selectivity of the HMVK reaction. Collectively, the results show HMVK readily and selectively forms adducts on Hb. Characterization of these adducts will facilitate development of useful biomarkers of exposure to HMVK and its precursor 1,3-butadiene.

    • Detoxification of olefinic epoxides and nucleotide excision repair of epoxide-mediated DNA damage: Insights from animal models examining human sensitivity to 1,3-butadiene.
    • Wickliffe, Herring, Hallberg, Galbert, Masters, Ammenheuser, Xie, Friedberg, Lloyd, Abdel-Rahman and Ward
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene (BD) is a well-documented mutagen and carcinogen in rodents and is currently classified as a probable carcinogen in humans. Studies investigating workers exposed to BD indicate that, in some plants, there may be an increased genetic risk, and that polymorphisms in biotransformation and DNA repair proteins may modulate genetic susceptibility. To investigate the role of genetic polymorphisms in microsomal epoxide hydrolase (mEH) or nucleotide excision repair (NER) in contributing to the mutagenicity of BD, we conducted a series of experiments in which mice lacking mEH or NER activity were exposed to BD by inhalation or to the reactive epoxide metabolites of BD (epoxybutene-EB or diepoxybutane-DEB) by i.p. injection. Genetic susceptibility was measured using the Hprt cloning assay. Both deficient strains of mouse were significantly more sensitive to the mutagenic effects of BD and the injected epoxides. These studies provide support for the critical role that mEH plays in the biotransformation of BD, and the role that NER plays in maintaining genomic integrity following exposure to BD. Additional studies are needed to examine the importance of base excision repair (BER) in maintaining genomic integrity, the differential formation of DNA and protein adducts in deficient strains, and the potential for enhanced sensitivity to BD genotoxicity in mice either lacking or deficient in both biotransformation and DNA repair activity.

    • Some insights into the mode of action of butadiene by examining the genotoxicity of its metabolites.
    • Kligerman and Hu
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene (BTD) is an important commodity chemical and air pollutant that has been shown to be a potent carcinogen in mice, and to a lesser extent, a carcinogen in rats. To better assess butadiene's carcinogenic risk to humans, it is important to understand its mode of action and how this relates to differences in responses among species. In a series of in vitro experiments, lymphocytes from rats, mice, and humans were exposed to 3,4-epoxy-1-butene (EB) or 1,2:3,4-diepoxybutane (DEB) for 1h at the G(0) stage of the cell cycle, stimulated to divide, and cultured to assess the ability of these metabolites to induce sister chromatid exchange (SCE) and chromosome aberrations (CAs). EB induced no increases in SCEs or CAs in the cells from the three species. DEB was a potent SCE- and CA-inducer, with the results being similar in each rodent species. The response for SCEs seen in the human cells was more complex, with genetic polymorphism for glutathione-S-transferases (GST) possibly modulating the response. The single cell gel electrophoresis assay was used on genetically engineered V79 cell lines to investigate a possible influence of GST status. Experiments were also conducted to investigate the reason for EB's failure to induce SCEs or CAs in G(0) cells. The results indicate that EB-induced DNA damage was repaired before DNA synthesis in unstimulated lymphocytes, but EB caused a large increase in SCEs if actively cycling cells were treated. Thus, the results indicate that DEB damage is persistent in G(0) cells, and DEB is a much more potent genotoxicant than EB. The carcinogenic effect of butadiene will most likely depend on the degree to which DEB is produced and reaches target tissues, and to a lesser extent on the ability of EB to reach actively dividing or repair deficient cells.

    • Cross-linking of the human DNA repair protein O6-alkylguanine DNA alkyltransferase to DNA in the presence of 1,2,3,4-diepoxybutane.
    • Loeber, Rajesh, Fang, Pegg and Tretyakova
    • Chem Res Toxicol
    • 19 : 5
    • Abstract

    1,2,3,4-Diepoxybutane (DEB) is a key carcinogenic metabolite of the important industrial chemical 1,3-butadiene. DEB is a bifunctional alkylating agent capable of reacting with DNA and proteins. Initial DNA alkylation by DEB produces N7-(2'-hydroxy-3',4'-epoxybut-1'-yl)-guanine monoadducts, which can react with another nucleophilic site to form cross-linked adducts. A recent report revealed a strong correlation between cellular expression of the DNA repair protein O6-alkylguanine DNA alkyltransferase (AGT) and the cytotoxic and mutagenic activity of DEB, suggesting that DEB induces AGT-DNA cross-links (Valadez, J. G., et al. (2004) Activation of bis-electrophiles to mutagenic conjugates by human O6-alkylguanine-DNA alkyltransferase. Chem. Res. Toxicol. 17, 972-982). The purpose of our study was to analyze the formation and structures of DEB-induced AGT-DNA conjugates and to identify specific amino acid residues within the protein involved in cross-linking. DNA-protein cross-link formation was detected by SDS-PAGE when 32P-labeled double-stranded oligodeoxynucleotides were exposed to DEB in the presence of either wild-type hAGT or a C145A hAGT mutant. Capillary HPLC-electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) analysis of hAGT that had been treated with N7-(2'-hydroxy-3',4'-epoxybut-1'-yl)-deoxyguanosine (dG monoepoxide) revealed the ability of the protein to form either one or two butanediol-dG cross-links, corresponding to mass shifts of +353 and +706 Da, respectively. HPLC-ESI+ -MS/MS sequencing of the tryptic peptides obtained from dG monoepoxide-treated protein indicated that the two cross-linking sites were the alkyl acceptor site, Cys145, and a neighboring active site residue, Cys150. The same two amino acid residues of hAGT became covalently cross-linked to DNA following DEB treatment. Modification of Cys145 was further confirmed by HPLC-ESI+ -MS/MS analysis of dG monoepoxide-treated synthetic peptide GNPVPILIPCHR which represents the active site tryptic fragment of hAGT (C = Cys145). The replacement of the catalytic cysteine residue with alanine in the C145A hAGT mutant abolished DEB-induced cross-linking at this site, while the formation of conjugates via neighboring Cys150 was retained. The exact chemical structure of the cross-linked lesion was established as 1-(S-cysteinyl)-4-(guan-7-yl)-2,3-butanediol by HPLC-ESI+ -MS/MS analysis of the amino acids resulting from the total digestion of modified proteins analyzed in parallel with an authentic standard. AGT-DNA cross-linking is a likely mechanism of DEB-mediated cytotoxicity in cells expressing this important repair protein.

    • Cancer risk assessment for 1,3-butadiene: data integration opportunities.
    • Preston
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    The US Environmental Protection Agency recently released its new guidelines for carcinogen risk assessment together with supplemental guidance for assessing susceptibility from early-life exposure to carcinogens. In particular, these guidelines encourage the use of mechanistic data in support of dose-response characterization at doses below those at which an increase in tumor frequency over background levels might be detected. In this context of the utility of mechanistic data for human cancer risk assessment, the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) has developed a human relevance framework (HRF) that can be used to assess the plausibility of a mode of action (MoA) described for animal models operating in humans. The MoA is described as a sequence of key events and processes that result in an adverse outcome. A key event is a measurable precursor step that is in itself a necessary element of the MoA or is a bioindicator for such an element. A number of cellular and molecular perturbations have been identified as key events whereby DNA-reactive chemicals can produce tumors. These include DNA adducts in target tissues, gene mutations and/or chromosomal alterations in target tissues and enhanced cell proliferation in target tissues. This type of data integration approach to quantitative cancer risk assessment can be applied to 1,3-butadiene, for example, using data on biomarkers in exposed Czech workers [1]. For this study, an extensive range of biomarkers of exposure and response was assessed, including: polymorphisms in metabolizing enzymes; urinary concentrations of several metabolites of 1,3-butadiene; hemoglobin adducts; HPRT mutations in T-lymphocytes; chromosomal aberrations by FISH and conventional staining procedures; sister chromatid exchanges. Exposure levels were monitored in a comprehensive fashion. For risk assessment purposes, these data need to be considered in the context of how they inform the MoA for leukemia, the tumor type reported to be increased in synthetic rubber workers exposed to 1,3-butadiene. Also, for the HRF it is necessary to establish key events for a MoA in rodents for the induction of tumors by 1,3-butadiene. There is clearly a species difference in sensitivity to tumor induction, with mice being much more sensitive than rats; key events need to explain this difference. For butadiene, the MoA is DNA-reactivity and subsequent mutagenicity and so following the EPA's cancer guidelines, a linear extrapolation is used from the point of departure (POD), unless additional data support a non-linear extrapolation. For the present case, the human bioindicator data are not informative as far as dose-response characterization is concerned. Mouse chromosome aberration data for in vivo exposures might be used for establishing a POD, with linear extrapolation from this POD. The available cytogenetic data from rodent studies appear to be sufficiently extensive and consistent for this to be a viable approach. This approach of using MoA and key events to establish the human relevance can lead to the development of specific informative bioindicators of response that can be used as surrogates to predict the shape of the tumor dose response curve at low doses. Truly informative predictors of tumor responses should be able to provide estimates of human tumor frequencies at low, environmental exposures to 1,3-butadiene.

    • Metabolism of 1,3-butadiene to toxicologically relevant metabolites in single-exposed mice and rats.
    • Filser, Hutzler, Meischner, Veereshwarayya and Csanády
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 166 : 1-3
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene (BD) was carcinogenic in rodents. This effect is related to reactive metabolites such as 1,2-epoxy-3-butene (EB) and especially 1,2:3,4-diepoxybutane (DEB). A third mutagenic epoxide, 3,4-epoxy-1,2-butanediol (EBD), can be formed from DEB and from 3-butene-1,2-diol (B-diol), the hydrolysis product of EB. In BD exposed rodents, only blood concentrations of EB and DEB have been published. Direct determinations of EBD and B-diol in blood are missing. In order to investigate the BD-dependent blood burden by all of these metabolites, we exposed male B6C3F1 mice and male Sprague-Dawley rats in closed chambers over 6-8h to constant atmospheric BD concentrations. BD and exhaled EB were measured in chamber atmospheres during the BD exposures. EB blood concentrations were obtained as the product of the atmospheric EB concentration at steady state with the EB blood-to-air partition coefficient. B-diol, EBD, and DEB were determined in blood collected immediately at the end of BD exposures up to 1200 ppm (B-diol, EBD) and 1280 ppm (DEB). Analysis of BD was done by GC/FID, of EB, DEB, and B-diol by GC/MS, and of EBD by LC/MS/MS. EB blood concentrations increased with BD concentrations amounting to 2.6 micromol/l (rat) and 23.5 micromol/l (mouse) at 2000 ppm BD and to 4.6 micromol/l in rats exposed to 10000 ppm BD. DEB (detection limit 0.01 micromol/l) was found only in blood of mice rising to 3.2 micromol/l at 1280 ppm BD. B-diol and EBD were quantitatively predominant in both species. B-diol increased in both species with the BD exposure concentration reaching 60 micromol/l at 1200 ppm BD. EBD reached maximum concentrations of 9.5 micromol/l at 150 ppm BD (rat) and of 42 micromol/l at 300 ppm BD (mouse). At higher BD concentrations EBD blood concentrations decreased again. This picture probably results from a competitive inhibition of the EBD producing CYP450 by BD, which occurs in both species.

    • Characterization of 1,2,3,4-diepoxybutane-2'-deoxyguanosine cross-linking products formed at physiological and nonphysiological conditions.
    • Zhang and Elfarra
    • Chem Res Toxicol
    • 19 : 4
    • Abstract

    1,2,3,4-Diepoxybutane (DEB), an in vivo metabolite of 1,3-butadiene (BD), is a carcinogen and mutagen. The strong carcinogenicity/mutagenicity of DEB has been attributed to its high DNA reactivity and cross-linking ability. Recently, we have demonstrated that under in vitro physiological conditions (pH 7.4, 37 degrees C), the reaction of DEB with 2'-deoxyguanosine (dG) produced two diastereomeric pairs of the major nucleoside adducts resulting from alkylation at the N1- and N7-positions of dG, that is, 2'-deoxy-1-(2-hydroxy-2-oxiranylethyl)guanosine and 2'-deoxy-7-(2-hydroxy-2-oxiranylethyl)guanosine, respectively [Zhang, X.-Y., and Elfarra, A. A. (2005) Chem. Res. Toxicol. 18, 1316]. As each of these adducts contains an oxirane ring, the abilities of these adducts to form cross-linking products with dG under physiological conditions were investigated. Incubation of the N7 nucleoside adducts and their corresponding guanine product with dG led to formation of 7,7'-(2,3-dihydroxy-1,4-butanediyl)bis[2-amino-1,7-dihydro-6H-purin-6-one] (bis-N7G-BD), a known DEB cross-linking product. Incubation of the N1 nucleoside adducts with dG led to formation of a pair of diastereomers of 2'-deoxy-1-[4-(2-amino-1,7-dihydro-6H-purin-6-on-7-yl)-2,3-dihydroxybutyl]-guanosine (N7G-N1dG-BD), which are novel cross-linking products. Interestingly, the reaction of DEB with dG in glacial acetic acid at 60 degrees C yielded different cross-linking products, which were characterized as 2-amino-9-hydroxymethyl-4-{4-[2-amino-9- or 7-(4-acetyloxy-2,3-dihydroxybutyl)-1,7-dihydro-6H-purin-6-on-7- or 9-yl]-2,3-dihydroxybutyl}-8,9-dihydro-7H-[1,4]oxazepino[4,3,2-gh]purin-8-ol (PA2) and 9,9'-bis(4-acetyloxy-2,3-dihydroxybutyl)-7,7'-(2,3-dihydroxy-1,4-butanediyl)bis[2-amino-1,7-dihydro-6H-purin-6-one] (PA4). Collectively, these results increase our understanding of the chemical reactivity and cross-linking ability of DEB under both physiological and nonphysiological conditions.

    • Urinary biomarkers of 1,3-butadiene in environmental settings using liquid chromatography isotope dilution tandem mass spectrometry.
    • Sapkota, Halden, Dominici, Groopman and Buckley
    • Chem Biol Interact
    • 160 : 1
    • Abstract

    Although, 1,3-butadiene is a known human carcinogen emitted from mobile sources, little is known about traffic-related human exposure to this toxicant. This pilot study was designed to characterize traffic-related environmental exposure to 1,3-butadiene and evaluate its urinary mercapturic acids as biomarkers of exposure in these settings. Personal air samples and multiple urine samples were collected on two separate occasions from three groups of individuals that differed by spatial proximity as well as intensity of traffic: (i) toll collectors, (ii) urban-weekday and (iii) suburban-weekend group. Air samples were analyzed using thermal desorption followed by GC/MS and urine samples were analyzed using isotope dilution liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (ID-LC-MS/MS) for two mercapturic acids of 1,3-butadiene: monohydroxy-3-butenyl mercapturic acid (MHBMA) and 1,2-dihydroxybutyl mercapturic acid (DHBMA). Exposure differed between groups (p<0.05) with median values of 2.38, 1.62 and 0.88 microg/m(3) for toll collectors, the urban-weekday group and the suburban-weekend group, respectively. A refined ID-LC-MS/MS method enabled detection of MHBMA, previously detected only in occupational settings, with high frequency. MHBMA and DHBMA were detected in 95 and 100% of urine samples at levels (mean+/-S.D.) of 9.7+/-9.5, 6.0+/-4.3 and 6.8+/-2.6 ng/mL for MHBMA and 378+/-196, 258+/-133 and 306+/-242 ng/mL for DHBMA for the three different groups, respectively. Mean biomarker levels were higher among the toll collectors compared to the other two groups, however, the differences were not statistically significant (p>0.05). This study is the first to evaluate 1,3-butadiene biomarkers for subtle differences in environmental exposures. However, additional research will be required to ascertain whether the lack of statistical association observed here is real or attributable to unexpectedly small differences in exposure between groups (<1 microg/m(3)), non-specificity of the biomarker at low exposure, and/or small sample size.

    • Lack of genotoxic effect in workers exposed to very low doses of 1,3-butadiene.
    • Lovreglio, Bukvic, Fustinoni, Ballini, Drago, Foà, Guanti and Soleo
    • Arch Toxicol
    • 80 : 6
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene (BD), a probable carcinogen to humans, has been shown to have an ill-defined genotoxicity in occupationally exposed workers. In the present study, the influence of exposure to very low doses of BD and to cigarette smoking was investigated on some cytogenetic endpoints, namely, sister chromatid exchanges (SCE), chromosomal aberrations (CA) and cells with a high frequency of SCE (HFC), in peripheral blood lymphocytes. Twenty-seven male workers employed in a petrochemical plant and 26 matched controls were included in the study. As regards the airborne BD values, there was a significant difference between exposed (median BD value 1.5, min-max 0.2-69.0 microg/m3) and non-exposed workers (median BD value 0.4, min-max <0.1-3.8 microg/m3). Genotoxic biomarkers were not able to distinguish between the two groups. The frequency of SCE was higher in smokers than in non-smokers (p=0.001), with a positive correlation between the number of cigarettes smoked per day and both SCE (r=0.4; p=0.004) and HFC frequency (r=0.3; p=0.04). Multiple regression analysis confirmed the influence of cigarette smoking on the level of SCE and HFC, while these parameters were not affected by personal exposure to BD. Overall, the biomarkers of genotoxic effect investigated in our study were not able to discriminate between workers with a very low exposure to BD and controls, while it was possible to distinguish between smokers and non-smokers on the basis of SCE.

    • Protection of rats against 3-butene-1,2-diol-induced hepatotoxicity and hypoglycemia by N-acetyl-l-cysteine.
    • Sprague and Elfarra
    • Toxicol Appl Pharmacol
    • 207 : 3
    • Abstract

    3-Butene-1,2-diol (BDD), an allylic alcohol and major metabolite of 1,3-butadiene, has previously been shown to cause hepatotoxicity and hypoglycemia in male Sprague-Dawley rats, but the mechanisms of toxicity were unclear. In this study, rats were administered BDD (250 mg/kg) or saline, ip, and serum insulin levels, hepatic lactate levels, and hepatic cellular and mitochondrial GSH, GSSG, ATP, and ADP levels were measured 1 or 4 h after treatment. The results show that serum insulin levels were not causing the hypoglycemia and that the hypoglycemia was not caused by an enhancement of the metabolism of pyruvate to lactate because hepatic lactate levels were either similar (1 h) or lower (4 h) than controls. However, both hepatic cellular and mitochondrial GSH and GSSG levels were severely depleted 1 and 4 h after treatment and the mitochondrial ATP/ADP ratio was also lowered 4 h after treatment relative to controls. Because these results suggested a role for hepatic cellular and mitochondrial GSH in BDD toxicity, additional rats were administered N-acetyl-l-cysteine (NAC; 200 mg/kg) 15 min after BDD administration. NAC treatment partially prevented depletion of hepatic cellular and mitochondrial GSH and preserved the mitochondrial ATP/ADP ratio. NAC also prevented the severe depletion of serum glucose concentration and the elevation of serum alanine aminotransferase activity after BDD treatment without affecting the plasma concentration of BDD. Thus, depletion of hepatic cellular and mitochondrial GSH followed by the decrease in the mitochondrial ATP/ADP ratio was likely contributing to the mechanisms of hepatotoxicity and hypoglycemia in the rat.

    • Reaction of 1,2,3,4-diepoxybutane with 2'-deoxyguanosine: initial products and their stabilities and decomposition patterns under physiological conditions.
    • Zhang and Elfarra
    • Chem Res Toxicol
    • 18 : 8
    • Abstract

    1,2,3,4-Diepoxybutane (DEB), an in vivo metabolite of 1,3-butadiene (BD), is a carcinogen and a potent mutagen. Previously, DEB was shown to react with 2'-deoxyguanosine (dG) under physiological conditions to produce seven major nucleoside adducts resulting from alkylation at the N1- (P8 and P9), N7- (P5 and P5'), and both the N1- and the N2-positions of dG to form six-membered (P4-1 and P4-2) and seven-membered fused ring systems (P6), respectively [Zhang, X.-Y., and Elfarra, A. A. (2003) Chem. Res. Toxicol. 16, 1606. Zhang, X.-Y., and Elfarra, A. A. (2004) Chem. Res. Toxicol. 17, 521]. In the present study, the stabilities and decomposition products of the seven adducts under in vitro physiological conditions (phosphate buffer containing KCl, pH 7.4, 37 degrees C) were investigated. The results showed that P4-1, P4-2, and P6 were stable, whereas P5, P5', P8, and P9 were labile with half-lives of 2.6, 2.7, 16, and 16 h, respectively. P5 and P5' decomposed initially by the loss of the deoxyribose moiety to yield the corresponding guanine adduct P5D, which exhibited a half-life of 33 h and decomposed through opening of the remaining oxirane ring by dihydrogen phosphate ion, water, or chloride ion. Decomposition of P8 yielded P4-1, P6, and nucleoside products resulting from opening of the oxirane ring by dihydrogen phosphate ion, water, or chloride ion. Similarly, decomposition of P9 led to the formation of P4-2, P6, and nucleoside products resulting from opening of the oxirane ring by dihydrogen phosphate ion, water, or chloride ion. These results indicate that the initial products of the reaction of DEB with dG are P5, P5', P8, and P9, whereas P4-1, P4-2, and P6 are secondary products. The results may also facilitate development of useful biomarkers of exposure to DEB.

    • 3,4-Epoxy-1-butene, a reactive metabolite of 1,3-butadiene, induces somatic mutations in Xpc-null mice.
    • Wickliffe, Galbert, Ammenheuser, Herring, Xie, Masters, Friedberg, Lloyd and Ward
    • Environ Mol Mutagen
    • 47 : 1
    • Abstract

    Xpc-null (Xpc-/-) mice, deficient in the global genome repair subpathway of nucleotide excision repair (NER-GGR), were exposed by intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection to a 300 mg/kg mutagenic dose of 3,4-epoxy-1-butene (EB), to investigate NER's potential role in repairing butadiene (BD) epoxide DNA lesions. Mutagenic sensitivity was assessed using the Hprt assay. Xpc-/- mice were significantly more sensitive to EB exposure, exhibiting an average 2.8-fold increase in Hprt mutant frequency (MF) relative to those of exposed Xpc+/+ (wild-type) mice. As a positive control for NER-GGR, additional mice were exposed by i.p. injection to a 150 mg/kg mutagenic dose of benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P). The Xpc-/- mice had MFs 2.9-fold higher than those of exposed Xpc+/+ mice. These results suggest that NER-GGR plays a role in recognizing and repairing some of the DNA adducts formed following in vivo exposure to EB. Additional research is needed to examine the response of Xpc-/- mice, as well as other NER-deficient strains, to inhaled BD. Furthermore, it is likely that alternative DNA repair pathways also are involved in restoring genomic integrity compromised by BD-epoxide DNA damage. Collaborative studies are currently underway to address these critical issues.

    • Combustion-derived ultrafine particles transport organic toxicants to target respiratory cells.
    • Penn, Murphy, Barker, Henk and Penn
    • Environ Health Perspect
    • 113 : 8
    • Abstract

    Epidemiologic evidence supports associations between inhalation of fine and ultrafine ambient particulate matter [aerodynamic diameter < or = 2.5 microm (PM2.5)] and increases in cardiovascular/respiratory morbidity and mortality. Less attention has been paid to how the physical and chemical characteristics of these particles may influence their interactions with target cells. Butadiene soot (BDS), produced during combustion of the high-volume petrochemical 1,3-butadiene, is rich in polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), including known carcinogens. We conducted experiments to characterize BDS with respect to particle size distribution, assembly, PAH composition, elemental content, and interaction with respiratory epithelial cells. Freshly generated, intact BDS is primarily (> 90%) PAH-rich, metals-poor (nickel, chromium, and vanadium concentrations all < 1 ppm) PM2.5, composed of uniformly sized, solid spheres (30-50 nm) in aggregated form. Cells of a human bronchial epithelial cell line (BEAS-2B) exhibit sequential fluorescent responses--a relatively rapid (approximately 30 min), bright but diffuse fluorescence followed by the slower (2-4 hr) appearance of punctate cytoplasmic fluorescence--after BDS is added to medium overlying the cells. The fluorescence is associated with PAH localization in the cells. The ultrafine BDS particles move down through the medium to the cell membrane. Fluorescent PAHs are transferred from the particle surface to the cell membrane, cross the membrane into the cytosol, and appear to accumulate in lipid vesicles. There is no evidence that BDS particles pass into the cells. The results demonstrate that uptake of airborne ultrafine particles by target cells is not necessary for transfer of toxicants from the particles to the cells.

    • Male-mediated developmental toxicity.
    • Anderson
    • Toxicol Appl Pharmacol
    • 207 : 2 Suppl
    • Abstract

    In recent years, the public has become more aware that exposure of males to certain agents can adversely affect their offspring and cause infertility and cancer. The hazards associated with exposure to ionising radiation have been recognised for nearly a century, but interest was aroused when a cluster of leukaemia cases was identified in young children living in Seascale, close to the nuclear processing plant at Sellafield in West Cumbria. There was a civil court case on behalf of two of the alleged victims of paternal irradiation at Seascale against British Nuclear Fuels. The case foundered on "the balance of probabilities". Nevertheless, there was support for paternal exposure from Japanese experimental X-ray studies in mice. The tumours were clearly heritable as shown by F2 transmission. Also, effects of a relatively non-toxic dose of radiation (1Gy) on cell proliferation transmitted to the embryo were manifested in the germ line of adult male mice even after two generations. In addition in humans, smoking fathers appear to give rise to tumours in the F(1) generation. Using rodent models, developmental abnormalities/congenital malformations and tumours can be studied after exposure of males in an extended dominant lethal assay and congenital malformations can be determined which have similar manifestations in humans. The foetuses can also be investigated for skeletal malformations and litters can be allowed to develop to adulthood when tumours, if present, can be observed. Karyotype analysis can be performed on foetuses and adult offspring to determine if induced genetic damage can be transmitted. Using this study design, cyclophosphamide, 1,3-butadiene and urethane have been examined and each compound produced positive responses: cyclophosphamide in all endpoints examined, 1,3-butadiene in some and urethane only produced liver tumours in F(1) male offspring. This suggests the endpoints are determined by independent genetic events. The results from heritable studies with 1,3-butadiene have been used in the parallelogram approach to determine a risk assessment for the germ cells in man.

    • Hemoglobin adducts and micronuclei in rodents after treatment with isoprene monoxide or butadiene monoxide.
    • Fred, Grawé and Törnqvist
    • Mutat Res
    • 585 : 1-2
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene and isoprene (2-methyl-1,3-butadiene) are chemically related substances that are carcinogenic to rodents. The overall aim of this work is to elucidate the role of the genotoxic action of diepoxide metabolites in the carcinogenesis of the dialkenes. In vivo doses of the diepoxide metabolites were measured through reaction products with hemoglobin (Hb adducts) in studies of induced micronuclei (MN) in rodents. In the reaction with N-terminal valine in Hb, diepoxybutane and isoprenediepoxide form ring-closed adducts, pyrrolidines [N,N-(2,3-dihydroxy-1,4-butadiyl)valine and N,N-(2,3-dihydroxy-2-methyl-1,4-butadiyl)valine, respectively]. The method applied for Hb-adduct measurement is based on tryptic degradation of the protein and liquid chromatography electrospray ionisation tandem mass spectrometry (LC-ESI-MS/MS) analysis. Mice were given single i.p. injections of the monoepoxides of butadiene and isoprene, 1,2-epoxy-3-butene or 1,2-epoxy-2-methyl-3-butene, respectively. Rats were treated in the same way with 1,2-epoxy-3-butene. In mice pyrrolidine adduct levels increased with increasing administered doses of the monoepoxides. The in vivo dose of diepoxybutane was on average twice as high (0.29+/-0.059 mMh) as the in vivo dose of isoprenediepoxide (0.15+/-0.053 mMh) per administered dose (mmol/kg body weight) of the monoepoxides. In mice the genotoxic effects of the two monoepoxides, measured as the increase in the frequencies of micronuclei (MN), were approximately linearly correlated to the in vivo doses of the diepoxides (except at the highest dose of diepoxybutane). In rats the pyrrolidine-adduct levels from diepoxybutane were below the limit of quantification at all administered doses of 1,2-epoxy-3-butene and no significant increase was observed in the frequency of MN. Measurement of the ring-closed adducts to N-termini in Hb by the applied method permits analysis of in vivo doses of diepoxybutane and isoprenediepoxide, which may be further used for the elucidation of the mechanisms of carcinogenesis of butadiene and isoprene.

    • Quantification of DNA and hemoglobin adducts of 3,4-epoxy-1,2-butanediol in rodents exposed to 3-butene-1,2-diol.
    • Powley, Li, Upton, Walker and Swenberg
    • Carcinogenesis
    • 26 : 9
    • Abstract

    1,3-Butadiene (BD) is a confirmed rodent carcinogen and a suspect human carcinogen that forms mutagenic epoxide metabolites during biotransformation. Species differences in the roles of individual DNA reactive intermediates in BD mutagenicity and carcinogenicity are not completely understood. Evidence suggests that 1,2:3,4-diepoxybutane (DEB) is responsible for the mutagenic effect induced by exposures to low concentrations of BD in mice and that metabolites of 3-butene-1,2-diol (BD-diol) are involved in the mutagenicity at high exposures in both mice and rats. Two reactive metabolites, 3,4-epoxy-1,2-butanediol (EB-diol) and hydroxymethylvinyl ketone (HMVK), are formed during the biotransformation of BD-diol and could potentially be involved in BD-diol associated mutagenicity. To examine the role of EB-diol in BD-diol mutagenicity we have evaluated the dosimetry of N7-(2,3,4-trihydroxybutyl)guanine (THB-Gua) and N-(2,3,4-trihydroxybutyl)valine (THB-Val) in female B6C3F1 mice and female F344 rats exposed by inhalation to 0, 6, 18 and 36 p.p.m. BD-diol for 4 weeks (6 h/day x 5 days/week). Results showed higher levels of both THB-Gua and THB-Val in mice than in rats. An evaluation of THB-Gua adducts showed virtually no differences between liver and lung for either species, suggesting that EB-diol is stable and is freely circulated. The data also indicated that THB adduct formation began to plateau around 18 p.p.m. in both species. Most importantly, the shape of the dose-response curve for THB adduct formation mimicked the one observed for hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (Hprt) mutation frequency. This showed that THB adducts, which are not thought to be responsible for causing the mutations, are good quantitative indicators of mutagenicity in rodents exposed to BD-diol. Although the potential contribution of HMVK still needs to be evaluated, the data suggest that EB-diol is responsible, at least in part, for BD-diol associated mutagenicity in rodents.

    • Variability in human sensitivity to 1,3-butadiene: influence of polymorphisms in the 5'-flanking region of the microsomal epoxide hydrolase gene (EPHX1).
    • Abdel-Rahman, Ammenheuser, Omiecinski, Wickliffe, Rosenblatt and Ward
    • Toxicol Sci
    • 85 : 1
    • Abstract

    The carcinogenic effects of 1,3-butadiene (BD), a mutagenic chemical widely used in the manufacture of synthetic rubber, are likely initiated through its epoxide metabolites. In humans, these epoxides are detoxified predominantly by hydrolysis, a reaction mediated by the microsomal epoxide hydrolase (mEH; EPHX1) enzyme. It appears reasonable to hypothesize that BD-exposed individuals possessing lower mEH detoxification capacity may have elevated risk of adverse health effects. The interindividual levels of mEH enzymatic activity vary considerably, and polymorphisms in the mEH gene may contribute to this variability. In addition to the well-studied coding region polymorphisms encoding Tyr113His and His139Arg substitutions, seven other polymorphic sites in the 5'-flanking region of the mEH gene have been reported. These polymorphisms appear to differentially affect mEH gene transcriptional activities. The 5'-flanking region polymorphisms exist in two linkages, the -200 linkage (-200C/T, -259C/T, -290T/G) and the -600 linkage (-362A/G, -613T/C, -699T/C), whereas the -399T/C polymorphism exists as an independent site. Because these polymorphisms may affect total mEH enzymatic activity, we hypothesized that they influence the mutagenic response associated with occupational exposure to BD. We genotyped the 5'-region of the mEH gene in 49 non-smoking workers from two styrene-butadiene rubber facilities in southeast Texas and evaluated the linkage patterns against results obtained from an autoradiographic HPRT mutant lymphocyte assay, used as a biomarker of genotoxic effect. In the study population, 67% were exposed to low BD levels, <150 parts per billion, and 33% were exposed to >150 ppb. We used the observed HPRT mutant (variant) frequency (VF) in the studied population and a 4-way first-order interaction statistical model to estimate parameters that describe the influence of exposure, genotypes and the interaction between the two on the HPRT VF in the target population. The background (baseline) VF, defined as the VF (x 10(-6)) +/- S.E.M. at low levels of BD exposure (<150 ppb) where all the genotypes under study are homozygous wild-type, was estimated to be 4.02 +/- 1.32. Exposure to >150 ppb of BD alone resulted in an estimated increase in VF of 3.42 +/- 2.47 above the baseline level. Inheritance of the variant ATT allele in the -600 linkages resulted in an estimated increase in VF of 3.39 +/- 1.67 above the baseline level. When the interaction between BD exposure and the ATT allele in the -600 linkage group was considered, a statistically significant positive interaction was observed, with an estimated increase in the VF of 10.89 +/- 2.16 (95% CI = 6.56-15.20; p = 0.0027) above baseline. These new data confirm and extend our previous findings that sensitivity to the genotoxic effects of BD is inversely correlated with predicted mEH