Human immunotoxicologic markers of chemical exposures: preliminary validation studies.

D. Wartenberg, D. Laskin, H. Kipen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The circulating cells of the immune system are sensitive to environmental contaminants, and effects are often manifested as changes in the cell surface differentiation antigens of affected populations of cells, particularly lymphocytes. In this investigation, we explore the likelihood that variation in the expression of the surface markers of immune cells can be used as an index of exposure to toxic chemicals. We recruited 38 healthy New Jersey men to study pesticides effects: 19 orchard farmers (high exposure); 13 berry farmers (low exposure); and 6 hardware store owners (no exposure). Immunophenotyping was performed assaying the following cell surface antigens: CD2, CD4, CD8, CD14, CD20, CD26, CD29, CD45R, CD56, and PMN. Data were analyzed using univariate and multivariate methods. There were no significant differences among the groups with respect to routine medical histories, physical examinations, or routine laboratory parameters. No striking differences between groups were seen in univariate tests. Multivariate tests suggested some differences among groups and limited ability to correctly classify individuals based on immunophenotyping results. Immunophenotyping represents a fruitful area of research for improved exposure classification. Work is needed both on mechanistic understanding of the patterns observed and on the statistical interpretation of these patterns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-61
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of exposure analysis and environmental epidemiology
Volume3 Suppl 1
StatePublished - 1993

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Toxicology
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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