Archives of Environmental and Occupational Health. 2008 Summer;63(2):71-5. [Link]

Hasanoglu HC, Bayram E, Hasanoglu A, Demirag F.

Division of Pulmonary Diseases, Ankara Ataturk Training and Research Hospital, Ankara, Turkey.


The authors designed this study to show the effects of orally ingested asbestos on the lungs and pleura. They designated 3 groups of rats: group A (n = 18) was given 1.5 g/L asbestos in water, group B (n = 18) was given 3 g/L asbestos in water, and group C (n = 15), as a control group, was given only water. Histopathological evaluation of lungs and pleura of the rats after 6 months revealed significant mesothelial proliferation and asbestos bodies. After 9 months, more rats exhibited mesothelial proliferation in group B than in group A (p < .05). The number of rats with asbestos bodies in their lungs was greater in group B than in group A. More rats in group B than in group A had asbestos in their spleen. The authors observed mesothelial proliferation in all group B rats at the end of 12 months. Ingested asbestos traveled from the gastrointestinal system to the lungs, likely via a lymphohematological route, leading to mesothelial proliferation, which may lead to malignancies.

Keywords: asbestos, cancer, mesothelioma