Paraoxonase polymorphism and its effect on male reproductive outcomes among Chinese pesticide factory workers

Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Publication Type:
Journal Article
American Journal of Industrial Medicine, 1999, 36 (3), pp. 379 - 387
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Background Sei um paraoxonase has been associated with the metabolism of organophosphate pesticides in humans. Molecular analysis of the human paraoxonase gene (PON1) has revealed that Arg(192) homozygotes have a greater detoxifying capability than Gln(192) homozygotes. We examined the effects of PON1 genotypes on male reproductive outcomes and its interaction with exposure to organophosphate pesticides. Methods We studied 60 Chinese pesticide-factory workers and 89 textile-factory workers who were unexposed to pesticides. The respective allele frequencies of Arg(192) and Gln(192) were 0.62 and 0.38. Pesticide exposure among 36 exposed subjects and 12 unexposed subjects, regardless of gender was assessed by personal measurement of pesticide residues over an entire 8-hr shift and measurement of urinary p-nitrophenol level over a 24-hr period. We analyzed semen and hormone data collected from male subjects. Results When the three PON1 genotypes were analyzed separately, a gene dose effect was not detected, We used rite unexposed Arg(192) homo/heterozygotes as the reference group, and re-analyzed the data. Exposed Arg(192) homo/heterozygotes had significantly lower sperm count (chi(2) = 9.01, P < 0.01) and lower percentage of sperm with normal morphology (chi(2) = 4.18, P < 0.05) than the reference group. Both unexposed Gln(192) homozygotes (chi(2) = 4.90 P < 0.05) and exposed Arg(192) homo/heterozygotes (chi(2) = 10.00, P < 0.01) showed significantly lower sperm concentrations than the reference group. In addition, exposed Arg(192) homo/heterozygotes had significantly higher serum LH levels (chi(2) = 7.94, P < 0.01) than the reference group. Conclusions Because of a small sample size, our findings are highly preliminary: Nevertheless, it calls for further investigation of the interaction between the PON1 genotype and organophosphate pesticide exposure on male reproductive outcomes.
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