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Bioinorganic Chemistry and Applications
Volume 2008, Article ID 420578, 6 pages
Research Article

Biological Monitoring of Hexavalent Chromium and Serum Levels of the Senescence Biomarker Apolipoprotein J/Clusterin in Welders

1Department of Public Health, Medical School, University of Patras, 26500 Rio Patras, Greece
2Hellenic Institute for Occupational Health and Safety, 6 Thirsiou Street, 10445 Athens, Greece
3National Hellenic Research Foundation, Institute of Biological Research and Biotechnology, 48 Vas. Constantinou Avenue, 11635 Athens, Greece

Received 26 August 2007; Revised 12 January 2008; Accepted 13 March 2008

Academic Editor: Guillermo Mendoza-Diaz

Copyright © 2008 Evangelos C. Alexopoulos et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Welding fumes contain metals and other toxic substances known or strongly suspected to be related with oxidative stress and premature cellular senescence. Apolipoprotein J/Clusterin (ApoJ/CLU) is a glycoprotein that is differentially regulated in various physiological and disease states including ageing and age-related diseases. In vitro data showed that exposure of human diploid fibroblasts to hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)) resulted in premature senescence and significant upregulation of the ApoJ/CLU protein. In this study we analyzed blood and urine samples from shipyard industry welders being exposed to different levels of Cr(VI) over a period of five months in order to assay in vivo the relation of ApoJ/CLU serum levels with Cr(VI). Our findings confirmed the previously reported in vitro data since reduction of Cr levels, after a worksite intervention, associated with lower levels of ApoJ/CLU serum levels. We concluded that the human ApoJ/CLU gene is responsive to the acute in vivo oxidative stress induced by heavy metals such as hexavalent chromium.