Original article

Scand J Work Environ Health 1976;2(3):176-184    pdf


Effect of a short, heavy exposure to lead dust upon blood lead level, erythrocyte delta-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase activity and urinary excretion of lead delta-aminolevulinic acid coproporphyrin. Results of a 6-month follow-up of two male subjects.

by Schütz A, Skerfving S

During 1 h two healthy volunteers, not earlier exposed occupationally to lead, inhaled about 100 mg of lead as a mixture of lead oxides and lead sulfate. Maximum blood lead (PbB) concentrations of about 0.5 mg/1 and minimum blood cell delta-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase activities (ALAD) (6% of the preexposure values) were observed within 38 h after exposure. PbB and ALAD returned to preexposure levels after about 300 and 150 days. A highly significant correlation between ALAD and PbB was seen even at lead levels in the range 0.1-0.2 mg/1. Delta-aminolevulinic acid, coproporphyrin and lead in the urine (ALAU, CPU, and PbU, respectively) increased. The peak levels occurred after about 15 h for ALAU and CPU and after about 24 h for PbU. There was a very good correlation between log PbU and lin PbB. ALAU increased already at PbB levels of about 0.3 mg/1.