Participation of metallothionein and superoxide dismutase in the blood of smoking smelters
Department of Biomedical and Environmental Analyses, Wroclaw Medical University, Wrocław, Poland
Department of Biomedical and Environmental Analyses, Wroclaw Medical University, Borowska 211, 50-556, Wrocław, Poland
Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2014;27(2):326–334
Objectives: Metallothionein (MT) and two forms of superoxide dismutase (SOD), which are dependent on zinc and copper ions, are involved in defense against the same superoxide anion radicals and are present in extra- and intracellular compartments. The aim of our study was to investigate MT concentration and Cu/Zn SOD activity in the plasma and erythrocyte lysate of the non-smoking and smoking smelters. Material and Methods: The investigations were performed in the blood of 300 male smelters and 100 non-exposed male subjects. We have measured zinc, copper, malondialdehyde (MDA) and MT concentrations as well as SOD activity. Results: We have observed an increase of Cu/Zn coefficient and decrease of Zn/Cu coefficient in the serum of smelters in comparison with the non-smoking control group. Concentration of MDA in the plasma of smelters was higher in comparison with its concentration in the non-smoking control group. The plasma and the erythrocyte lysate MT concentration increased significantly in the whole group of smelters as compared to the non-smoking control group. The mean value of MT concentration in plasma of the smoking smelters was above 2-fold higher than in the non-smoking control group. The activity of Cu/Zn SOD in plasma of the smoking and non-smoking smelters was decreased in comparison with the smoking and non-smoking control groups, respectively. The lowest activity of Cu/Zn SOD, about 2-3‑fold decreased in comparison with the smoking and non-smoking control groups, was detected in plasma of the smelters. An inverse relationship was observed in the erythrocyte lysate. The highest activity of Cu/Zn SOD was reported in the erythrocyte lysate of the smoking smelters and it was about 2-fold higher than in the non-smoking control group. Conclusions: In extracellular environment MT plays a crucial role in comparison with the SOD, while in the intracellular compartment Cu/Zn SOD and MT cooperate with each other.