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Effect of In Vivo Jet Fuel Exposure on Subsequent In Vitro Dermal Absorption of Individual Aromatic and Aliphatic Hydrocarbon Fuel Constituents

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The percutaneous absorption of topically applied jet fuel hydrocarbons (HC) through skin previously exposed to jet fuel has not been investigated, although this exposure scenario is the occupational norm. Pigs were exposed to JP-8 jet fuel-soaked cotton fabrics for 1 and 4 d with repeated daily exposures. Preexposed and unexposed skin was then dermatomed and placed in flow-through in vitro diffusion cells. Five cells with exposed skin and four cells with unexposed skin were dosed with a mixture of 14 different HC consisting of nonane, decane, undecane, dodecane, tridecane, tetradecane, pentadecane, hexadecane, ethyl benzene, o -xylene, trimethyl benzene (TMB), cyclohexyl benzene (CHB), naphthalene, and dimethyl naphthalene (DMN) in water + ethanol (50:50) as diluent. Another five cells containing only JP-8-exposed skin were dosed solely with diluent in order to determine the skin retention of jet fuel HC. The absorption parameters of flux, diffusivity, and permeability were calculated for the studied HC. The data indicated that there was a two-fold and four-fold increase in absorption of specific aromatic HC like ethyl benzene, o -xylene, and TMB through 1- and 4-dJP-8 preexposed skin, respectively. Similarly, dodecane and tridecane were absorbed more in 4-d than 1-dJP-8 preexposed skin experiments. The absorption of naphthalene and DMN was 1.5 times greater than the controls in both 1- and 4-d preexposures. CHB, naphthalene, and DMN had significant persistent skin retention in 4-d preexposures as compared to 1-d exposures that might leave skin capable of further absorption several days postexposure. The possible mechanism of an increase in HC absorption in fuel preexposed skin may be via lipid extraction from the stratum corneum as indicated by Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy. This study suggests that the preexposure of skin to jet fuel enhances the subsequent in vitro percutaneous absorption of HC, so single-dose absorption data for jet fuel HC from naive skin may not be optimal to predict the toxic potential for repeated exposures. For certain compounds, persistent absorption may occur days after the initial exposure.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Center for Chemical Toxicology Research and Pharmacokinetics, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA

Publication date: May 1, 2005

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