About Bioline  All Journals  Testimonials  Membership  News

Indian Journal of Human Genetics
Medknow Publications on behalf of Indian Society of Human Genetics
ISSN: 0971-6866
EISSN: 0971-6866
Vol. 17, No. 3, 2011, pp. 179-187
Bioline Code: hg11039
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Indian Journal of Human Genetics, Vol. 17, No. 3, 2011, pp. 179-187

 en Evaluation of DNA damage in agricultural workers exposed to pesticides using single cell gel electrophoresis (comet) assay
Kaur, Raminderjeet; Kaur, Satbir & Lata, Mukesh


Background : Pesticides are used in agriculture to protect crops, but they pose a potential risk to farmers and environment. The aim of the present study is to investigate the relation between the occupational exposure to various pesticides and the presence of DNA damage.
Materials and Methods : Blood samples of 210 exposed workers (after a day of intense spraying) and 50 control subjects belonging to various districts of Punjab (India) were evaluated using Comet assay. Sixty workers who showed DNA damage were selected for follow up at 5-6 months after the first sampling during a low or null spraying period.
Results : Significant differences were found in DNA damage between freshly exposed workers and controls and freshly exposed and followed up cases. There was significant increase in the comet parameters viz. mean comet tail length and frequency of cells showing migration in exposed workers as compared to controls (72.22 ± 20.76 vs. 46.92 ± 8.17, P<0.001; 31.79 vs. 5.77, P<0.001). In the second samples, followed up cases showed significant decrease in frequency of damaged cells as compared to freshly exposed workers of first sampling (P<0.05). The confounding factors such as variable duration of pesticide exposure, age, smoking, drinking and dietary habits etc which were expected to modulate the damage, were instead found to have no significant effect on DNA fragmentation.
Conclusion : The evidence of a genetic hazard related to exposure resulting from the intensive use of pesticides stresses the need for educational programs for agricultural workers to reduce the use of chemicals in agriculture.

Agricultural workers, comet assay, DNA damage, genotoxicity, pesticides, Punjab

© Copyright 2011 Indian Journal of Human Genetics.
Alternative site location:

Home Faq Resources Email Bioline
© Bioline International, 1989 - 2024, Site last up-dated on 01-Sep-2022.
Site created and maintained by the Reference Center on Environmental Information, CRIA, Brazil
System hosted by the Google Cloud Platform, GCP, Brazil