Plasma antibodies to heat shock protein 60 and heat shock protein 70 are associated with increased risk of electrocardiograph abnormalities in automobile workers exposed to noise.
In the living and working environment, stressful factors, such as noise, can cause health problems including cardiovascular diseases and noise-induced hearing loss. Some heat shock proteins (Hsps) play an important role in protecting cardiac cells against ischemic injury, and antibodies against these Hsps are associated with the development and prognosis of atherogenesis, coronary heart disease, and hypertension. Whether the presence of such antibodies is associated with abnormal electrocardiography (ECG) in stressed autoworkers exposed to chronic noise is presently unknown. Therefore, we investigated the association between the levels of plasma anti-Hsp60 and anti-Hsp70 with electrocardiograph abnormality in 396 autoworkers exposed to different noise levels by using Western blot, ECG, and multivariate logistic regression analysis. The results showed that the increase in levels of anti-Hsp70 was associated with a higher risk of ECG abnormalities characteristic of chronic myocardial ischemia (P < 0.05), conductive abnormality (P < 0.01), or heart displacement (P < 0.05); in contrast, elevated anti-Hsp60 was related to ECG abnormalities characteristic of sinus arrhythmia, chronic myocardial ischemia, and ectopic rhythm (P < 0.01 for all). Overall, high levels of both anti-Hsp70 and anti-Hsp60 were associated with significantly increased risk of ECG abnormalities (odds ratio [OR] = 1.73 and 95% confidence interval [Cl] = 1.04-2.86 for anti-Hsp70 and OR = 1.36 and 95% Cl = 1.07-1.72 for anti-Hsp60) with and without adjustment for cumulative noise exposure (OR = 1.96 and 95% Cl = 1.20-3.21 for anti-Hsp70 and OR = 3.93 and 95% Cl = 1.72-8.92 for anti-Hsp60). These findings suggest that the production of both anti-Hsp70 and anti-Hsp60 may be independent risk factors for the development and progression of abnormal ECG and therefore possibly cardiovascular diseases in autoworkers exposed to occupational noise.
Yuan, J; Yang, M; Yao, H; Zheng, J; Yang, Q; Chen, S; Wei, Q; Tanguay, RM; Wu, T
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