Serum KIF5A, KIF18A, and p53 Autoantibody Concentrations as Potential Biomarkers of Asbestos Exposure

Background: Asbestos-related diseases remain a significant occupational health problem in much of the world. Evidence of asbestos exposure is not always apparent in routine clinical evaluations of potentially exposed individuals, particularly in the initial stages of pathogenesis, so convenient biomarkers of exposure could be useful in the early identification of individuals at risk.

Methods and findings: Based on prior research, we examined serum levels of kinesin family proteins (KIF5A and KIF18A) and p53 autoantibodies in 198 asbestosexposed workers and 164 unexposed controls. Exposed individuals were significantly more likely to have increased KIF5A and decreased KIF18A compared to the unexposed controls; p53 autoantibodies and exposure were unrelated.

Conclusion: Serum kinesins may be useful biomarkers of asbestos exposure.


Matthew Schmitz, Angela Gambelunghe, Youngliang Li, Giacomo Muzi, Angela Giuliani and Paul Brandt-Rauf

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