In order to assess DNA damage associated with exposure to environmental pollution in two polluted sites and one control site in Kosovo, whole blood samples were collected from volunteers in two polluted areas (Kastriot/ Obiliq - lignite-based power plants and lignite mines - and Drenas/Gllogovc - Ferronikeli smelting plant) as well as from Peja, representing an unpolluted area. White blood cells were isolated, and DNA damage was analyzed by the alkaline comet assay. Significantly higher levels of DNA damage (strand breaks) were found in white blood cells from subjects living in the polluted areas compared with residents of the unpolluted city, indicating a potential threat to human health.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.