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Exposure to wood dust, microbial components, and terpenes in the Norwegian sawmill industry

Vit. artikkel


  • 2018

Sawmill workers are exposed to wood dust (a well-known carcinogen), microorganisms, endotoxins, resin acids (diterpenes), and vapours containing terpenes, which may cause skin irritation, allergy, and respiratory symptoms including asthma. The health effects of most of these exposures are poorly understood as most studies measure only wood dust. The present study assessed these exposures in the Norwegian sawmill industry, which processes predominantly spruce and pine. Personal exposures of wood dust, resin acids, endotoxin, fungal spores and fragments, mono-, and sesquiterpenes were measured in 10 departments in 11 saw and planer mills. The geometric mean (GM) and geometric standard deviation (GSD) thoracic exposures were: 0.09 mg m−3 dust (GSD 2.6), 3.0 endotoxin units (EU) m−3 (GSD 4.9), 0.4 × 105 fungal spores m−3 (GSD 4.2), 2 × 105 fungal fragments m−3 (GSD 3.2), and 1560 ng m−3 of resin acids (GSD 5.5). The GM (GSD) inhalable exposures were: 0.72 mg m−3 dust (2.6), 17 EU m−3 (4.3), 0.4 × 105 fungal spores m−3 (3.8), and 7508 ng m−3 (4.4) of resin acids. The overall correlation between the thoracic and inhalable exposure was strong for resin acid (rp = 0.84), but moderate for all other components (rp = 0.34–0.64). The GM (GSD)...

Straumfors, Anne; Olsen, Raymond; Daae, Hanne Line; Afanou, Komlavi Anani; McLean, D.; Corbin, M.; Mannetje, A.; Ulvestad, Bente; Bakke, Berit; Johnsen, Helle Laier; Douwes, J.; Wijnand, Eduard
Annals of Work Exposures and Health 62(6): 674–688
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