Relationship between chemical structure and the occupational asthma hazard of low molecular weight organic compounds

Occupational and Environmental Medicine
J JarvisR Agius

Abstract

To investigate quantitatively, relationships between chemical structure and reported occupational asthma hazard for low molecular weight (LMW) organic compounds; to develop and validate a model linking asthma hazard with chemical substructure; and to generate mechanistic hypotheses that might explain the relationships. A learning dataset used 78 LMW chemical asthmagens reported in the literature before 1995, and 301 control compounds with recognised occupational exposures and hazards other than respiratory sensitisation. The chemical structures of the asthmagens and control compounds were characterised by the presence of chemical substructure fragments. Odds ratios were calculated for these fragments to determine which were associated with a likelihood of being reported as an occupational asthmagen. Logistic regression modelling was used to identify the independent contribution of these substructures. A post-1995 set of 21 asthmagens and 77 controls were selected to externally validate the model. Nitrogen or oxygen containing functional groups such as isocyanate, amine, acid anhydride, and carbonyl were associated with an occupational asthma hazard, particularly when the functional group was present twice or more in the same mo...Continue Reading

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