Immunologic effects of dioxin

New results from Seveso and comparison with other studies

Andrea Baccarelli, Paolo Mocarelli, Donald George Jr Patterson, Matteo Bonzini, Angela C. Pesatori, Neil Caporaso, Maria Teresa Landi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

99 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Animal studies indicate that the immune system is one of the most sensitive targets of the toxic effects of 2,3,7,8-tetrachloro-p-dibenzodioxin (TCDD). TCDD inhibits immunoglobulin secretion and decreases resistance to bacterial, viral, and parasitic infections in exposed animals. Nearly 20 years after the Seveso, Italy, accident, we measured immunoglobulin and complement plasma levels in a random sample of the population in the most highly exposed zones (n = 62) and in the surrounding noncontaminated area (n = 58). Plasma IgG levels decreased with increasing TCDD plasma concentration (r = -0.35, p = 0.0002). Median IgG concentration decreased from 1,526 mg/dL in the group with the lowest (< 3.5 ppt) TCDD levels to 1,163 mg/dL in the group with the highest (20.1-89.9 ppt) TCDD levels (p = 0.002). The association was significant (p = 0.0004) after adjusting for age, sex, smoking, and consumption of domestic livestock and poultry in multiple regression analysis and persisted after exclusion of subjects with inflammatory diseases and those using antibiotics or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. IgM, IgA, C3, and C4 plasma concentrations did not exhibit any consistent association with TCDD levels. We performed a systematic review of all the articles published between 1966 and 2001 on human subjects exposed to TCDD reporting information on circulating levels of immunoglobulins and/or complement components. The literature indicates that the evidence for effects of TCDD on humoral immunity is sparse. Methodologic issues, results, and possible sources of variation between studies are discussed. The possible long-term immunologic effects of TCDD exhibited by the participants of the present study, coupled with the increased incidence of lymphatic tumors in the area of the accident, warrant further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1169-1173
Number of pages5
JournalEnvironmental health perspectives
Volume110
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2002

Fingerprint

Dioxins
Immunoglobulins
Accidents
Immunoglobulin G
dibenzodioxin
Parasitic Diseases
Poisons
Livestock
Virus Diseases
Poultry
Humoral Immunity
Bacterial Infections
Immunoglobulin A
Italy
Immunoglobulin M
Immune System
Anti-Inflammatory Agents
Smoking
Regression Analysis
Anti-Bacterial Agents

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

Cite this

Baccarelli, A., Mocarelli, P., Patterson, D. G. J., Bonzini, M., Pesatori, A. C., Caporaso, N., & Landi, M. T. (2002). Immunologic effects of dioxin: New results from Seveso and comparison with other studies. Environmental health perspectives, 110(12), 1169-1173. https://doi.org/10.1289/ehp.021101169
Baccarelli, Andrea ; Mocarelli, Paolo ; Patterson, Donald George Jr ; Bonzini, Matteo ; Pesatori, Angela C. ; Caporaso, Neil ; Landi, Maria Teresa. / Immunologic effects of dioxin : New results from Seveso and comparison with other studies. In: Environmental health perspectives. 2002 ; Vol. 110, No. 12. pp. 1169-1173.
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Baccarelli, A, Mocarelli, P, Patterson, DGJ, Bonzini, M, Pesatori, AC, Caporaso, N & Landi, MT 2002, 'Immunologic effects of dioxin: New results from Seveso and comparison with other studies', Environmental health perspectives, vol. 110, no. 12, pp. 1169-1173. https://doi.org/10.1289/ehp.021101169

Immunologic effects of dioxin : New results from Seveso and comparison with other studies. / Baccarelli, Andrea; Mocarelli, Paolo; Patterson, Donald George Jr; Bonzini, Matteo; Pesatori, Angela C.; Caporaso, Neil; Landi, Maria Teresa.

In: Environmental health perspectives, Vol. 110, No. 12, 01.12.2002, p. 1169-1173.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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T1 - Immunologic effects of dioxin

T2 - New results from Seveso and comparison with other studies

AU - Baccarelli, Andrea

AU - Mocarelli, Paolo

AU - Patterson, Donald George Jr

AU - Bonzini, Matteo

AU - Pesatori, Angela C.

AU - Caporaso, Neil

AU - Landi, Maria Teresa

PY - 2002/12/1

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N2 - Animal studies indicate that the immune system is one of the most sensitive targets of the toxic effects of 2,3,7,8-tetrachloro-p-dibenzodioxin (TCDD). TCDD inhibits immunoglobulin secretion and decreases resistance to bacterial, viral, and parasitic infections in exposed animals. Nearly 20 years after the Seveso, Italy, accident, we measured immunoglobulin and complement plasma levels in a random sample of the population in the most highly exposed zones (n = 62) and in the surrounding noncontaminated area (n = 58). Plasma IgG levels decreased with increasing TCDD plasma concentration (r = -0.35, p = 0.0002). Median IgG concentration decreased from 1,526 mg/dL in the group with the lowest (< 3.5 ppt) TCDD levels to 1,163 mg/dL in the group with the highest (20.1-89.9 ppt) TCDD levels (p = 0.002). The association was significant (p = 0.0004) after adjusting for age, sex, smoking, and consumption of domestic livestock and poultry in multiple regression analysis and persisted after exclusion of subjects with inflammatory diseases and those using antibiotics or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. IgM, IgA, C3, and C4 plasma concentrations did not exhibit any consistent association with TCDD levels. We performed a systematic review of all the articles published between 1966 and 2001 on human subjects exposed to TCDD reporting information on circulating levels of immunoglobulins and/or complement components. The literature indicates that the evidence for effects of TCDD on humoral immunity is sparse. Methodologic issues, results, and possible sources of variation between studies are discussed. The possible long-term immunologic effects of TCDD exhibited by the participants of the present study, coupled with the increased incidence of lymphatic tumors in the area of the accident, warrant further investigation.

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Baccarelli A, Mocarelli P, Patterson DGJ, Bonzini M, Pesatori AC, Caporaso N et al. Immunologic effects of dioxin: New results from Seveso and comparison with other studies. Environmental health perspectives. 2002 Dec 1;110(12):1169-1173. https://doi.org/10.1289/ehp.021101169