Study of exhaled nitric oxide in a group of workers potentially exposed to airborne pollutants


  • Antonio Bergamaschi Phoenix Environmental Sustainable Development srl
  • Maria Cristina Cappelletti Phoenix Environmental Sustainable Development srl
  • Cinzia Fulvi Phoenix Environmental Sustainable Development srl
  • Danilo De Angelis Phoenix Environmental Sustainable Development srl
  • Marco Pedone Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health



Exhaled nitric oxide, Biological Exposure Indices, Occupational Medicine, Biomarkers, Diagnosis


On a population of workers employed in a plant for the early separation and stabilization treatment of crude oil components (oil, gas, formation water) was carried out a survey to assess and monitor respiratory function, using a portable nitric oxide analyzer. The aim of the study was to identify early signs of inflammatory disease of the respiratory system in workers potentially exposed to noxae represented by various chemicals present in working place, even though consistently below the ACGIH occupational limit values. The inflammation of the respiratory tract is generally associated with a higher production of nitric oxide, whose detection and concentration measurement represent a quick and useful indicator. Therefore, the monitoring performed could represent a useful methods for determining the inflammation state of the respiratory tract of the workers examined.



Alving K., Weitzberg E., Lundberg J.M. Increased amount of nitric oxide in exhaled air of asthmatics. Eur Resp J 1993;1:1368-70.

Choi J., Hoffman L.A., Sethi J.M., Zullo T.G., Gibson K.F. Multiple flow rates measurement of exhaled nitric oxide in patients with sarcoidosis: a pilot feasibility study - Sarcoidosis vasculitis and diffuse lung diseases- official journal of Wasog World Association of Sarcoidosis and Other Granulomatous Disorders; 26; pp 98-109; 2009

Dweik R.A., Boggs P.B., Erzurum S.C., Irvin C.G., Leigh M.W., Lundberg J.O., Olin A., Plummer A.L., Taylor D.R. An Official ATS Clinical Practice Guideline: Interpretation of Exhaled Nitric Oxide Levels (FENO) for Clinical Applications. American Journal of respiratory and critical care medicine Vol 184. pp 602–615, 2011.

Fell A.K., Noto H., Skogstad M., Nordby K.C., Eduard W., Svendsen M.V., Ovstebo R., Troseid A.M., Kongerud J. Cross-shift study of lung function, exhaled nitric oxide and inflammatory markers in blood in Norwegian cement production workers. Occup Environ Med, Vol 68,pp799-805,2011

Horváth I., Hunt J., Barnes P.J. Exhaled breath condensate: methodological recommendations and unresolved questions. Eur Respir J 200;26:523-548

Huang Y.C., Yang M.C. Associations between occupational inhalation risks and FeNO levels in airway obstruction patients: results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2007–2012 - International Journal of COPD Vol 12 pp 3085–3093, 2017

Kharitonov S.A., Barnes P.J. Exhaled Markers of Pulmonary Disease - American Journal of respiratory and critical care medicine Vol 163. pp 1693–1722, 2001.

Verini M., Di Michele S., Consilvio N., Di Pillo S., Cingolani A., Chiarelli F. A che serve la valutazione dell’ossido nitrico esalato (FeNO) nella gestione dell’asma? Rivista di Immunologia e Allergologia Pediatrica, 02/2008;38-44

Vlaanderen J., Pronk A, Rothman N., Hildesheim A., Silverman D., Hosgood HD., Spaan S., Kuijpers E., Godderis L., Hoet P., Lan Q., Vermeulen R. A cross-sectional study of changes in markers of immunological effects and lung health due to exposure to multi-walled carbon nanotubes. Nanotoxicology: Vol 11:3, pp395-404, 2017

Wang Y, Li L, Han R, Lei W, Li Z, Li K, Kang J, Chen H, He Y. Diagnostic value and influencing factors of fractional exhaled nitric oxide in suspected asthma patients. Int J Clin Exp Pathol, 8(5): pp 5570-5576, 2015