Potential effect of germanium exposure on the risk of influenza-like illness in housewives in Shanxi Province, China.

Author(s) Pang, Y.; Guo, Y.; Li, K.; Ren, M.; Jia, X.; Li, Z.; Wang, B.; Yan, L.; Li, Z.
Journal Sci Total Environ
Date Published 2019 Sep 10

Few studies have examined the relationship between exposure to germanium (Ge) and the risk of influenza-like illness (ILI). Therefore, we investigated the association of Ge exposure and its interaction with single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) related to Phase II metabolism on ILI risk among housewives in Shanxi Province, northern China. This cross-sectional study enrolled 373 housewives. Information on the housewives' characteristics and the frequency of ILI was collected by questionnaire. We analyzed the Ge concentrations in hair samples taken from near the scalp at the back of the head. Blood samples were used to identify SNPs related to Phase II metabolism. The results suggested that the hair Ge concentration was associated with ILI risk with an adjusted odds ratio and 95% confidence interval of 2.59 (1.61-4.19). A significant dose-response relationship was observed without or with adjusting for confounders. We did not observe any interaction effect between the hair Ge concentration and the SNPs on ILI risk. We found that high dietary consumption of meat and fried foods was positively correlated with the hair Ge concentration. Therefore, chronic Ge exposure may be a risk factor for an increased frequency of ILI in housewives.

DOI 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.05.103
Keywords Adult; Aged; China; Cross-Sectional Studies; Dose-Response Relationship, Drug; Environmental Exposure; Female; Germanium; Hair; Humans; Influenza, Human; Metabolic Detoxication, Phase II; Middle Aged; Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide; Risk Factors
ISSN 1879-1026
Citation Sci Total Environ. 2019;682:208212.