Immunotoxic Effects of Silica Exposures in Gold Mining

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This was a study proposed to measure the immunotoxic effects of subterranean Gold Mines in South Africa.

This was a study proposed to measure the immunotoxic effects of subterranean Gold Mines in South Africa.

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  • Nice article on silica exposures in gold mining industry. For information on silica exposures in other industries visit - http://www.safetyawakenings.com/silica-exposures-in-the-workplace/
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  • 1. Immunotoxic Effects of Silica Exposure in Gold Miners in South Africa Ahmed Ibrahim Dr. Marc Schenker Environmental Epidemiology December 06, 2007
  • 2. Importance Background Objective Study Design Evaluation Questions
  • 3. Importance
    • Mining and infectious disease
    • Economic burden
    • Public Health
    • Environmental Justice
  • 4.
    • Toxicology Studies
    • -silica exposure in rats: activation of TH1
    • increased IgM, IgG, LALN’s
    • 2. Epidemiological Studies
    • Lung Cancer
    • COPD
    • High risk of infections
    Background
  • 5. Objective Does silica exposure cause immunodeficiency in South African gold miners?
  • 6.
    • Cross Sectional Study
    • Addendum
    • 2. Prospective Cohort Study
    Study Design
  • 7.
    • Cross Sectional Study
    • Prevalence of immunodeficiency among gold miners
    • Sending Surveys to Foreman to recruit miners
    • Inclusion Criteria
    • Healthy (assessed by onsite physician) male (15-60)
    • 2. HIV negative
    • 3. Miner/Nonminer (age, sex, resident matched controls)
    • 4. Not taking medication
  • 8.
    • Data Collection (n=500)
    • Age
    • Disease history (before/after mining job)
    • Position in mine (e.g. rock driller) -dose
    • Years of service -exposure
    • Residence
    • Serum sample (WBC)- Readout
  • 9.
    • 5 year observational period
    • 2. Same groups as cross sectional
    • 3. Continue to monitor WBC every three months.
    • 4. Await infection
    • 5. Compare immune responses to infection
    2. Prospective Cohort Study
  • 10.
    • Strengths
    • Important question
    • Two-tiered approach to save resources
    • High translation potential
    • Weakness
    • No strong evidence for rationale (exploratory)
    • May not provide meaningful results (e.g. wrong readout)
    Design Evaluation
  • 11. QUESTIONS