Cadmium (Cd), a nonessential toxic metal present in the environment, accumulates in the organs of herbivorous mammals which typically are consumed by Aboriginal populations. The relative contribution of this potential exposure source to concentrations of blood Cd was investigated in 1429 participants (age >7 years) residing in the nine Cree First Nations communities of Eeyou Istchee, northern Quebec, Canada. Analysis of variance identified significant Cd concentration differences between communities, sex, and age groups, although these were complicated by significant 2-way interactions. The percentage of participants with Cd concentrations within the adopted health-based guideline categories of 'acceptable', 'concern' and 'action' pertaining to kidney damage was 56.2%, 38.3%, and 5.5%, respectively. Partial correlations (controlling for age as a continuous variable) did not show a significant association between consumption of traditional foods and Cd concentrations (r = 0.014, df = 105, p = 0.883). A significant and positive partial correlation (r = 0.390, df = 105, p
Several ongoing international multidisciplinary projects have examined linkages between environmental chemicals and health. In contrast to Arctic regions, information for the Southern Hemisphere is scarce. Because of the inherent practice of pesticide utilisation and mismanagement, food security is potentially threatened. The most vulnerable period in human life occurs during pregnancy and early childhood, thus a focus on the body burdens of PTS in pregnant or delivering women is warranted. The current study was designed to investigate health risks related to exposure to PTS and food security in two regions of Argentina (Ushuaia and Salta). Our aims were to quantify concentrations of organic and inorganic toxins in serum or whole blood of delivering women and to collect pertinent dietary and medical information. The overall study design, the basic demographic features and essential clinical chemistry findings are described in the current paper. The socioeconomic differences between the two study areas were evident. On average, the women in Ushuaia were 4 years older than those in Salta (28.8 vs. 24.7 years). Respectively, the proportion of current smokers was 4.5 vs. 9.6%; and Salta had a higher birth rate, with 15.6% being para four or more. Saltanean women reported longer breastfeeding periods. Caesarean sections were more frequent in Ushuaia, with 43% of Caesarean deliveries compared with only 6% in Salta. Employment was high in both communities. Recognised environmental pollution sources in the vicinity of participant dwellings were widespread in Salta (56.1%) compared to Ushuaia (9%). The use of pesticides for insect control in homes was most common in Salta (80%). There is an urgent need for a comprehensive assessment of exposures in areas of the Southern Hemisphere. Our data set and the planned publications of observed concentrations of inorganic and organic environmental contaminants in both mothers and their newborns will contribute to this objective.
To describe exposure to methylmercury among Cree, focusing on women of childbearing age, we used data from 2 studies. Multiple regression was employed to examine associations between blood and hair mercury concentrations and consumption of locally harvested fish. Approximately 9.9% of non-pregnant women aged 15-44 y and 3.9% of pregnant women required follow-up according to Health Canada's blood mercury guidance value of 40 nmol/L. 8% of hair mercury observations in the non-pregnant women and 2.5% among pregnant women exceeded the equivalent threshold of 10 nmol/g. The geometric mean blood mercury concentration was 12.7 nmol/L in 1,429 persons aged 8 and over, and 17.7 nmol/L in adults aged 18 and older. The proportion of hair mercury concentrations greater than 12.5 nmol/g decreased in all age-sex groups when comparing the 2002-2009 data to published values for 1993-1994. Among women of childbearing age, local fish consumption was associated with increased blood and hair mercury concentrations. While over 90% of women of childbearing age in this population have acceptable levels of mercury, ongoing intake of mercury suggests that their consumption of fish with known high mercury content be minimised. Reducing consumption of fish known to be high in mercury content needs to be balanced with promoting ongoing connection to Cree culture and land-based activities that are also important determinants of health.
this article constitutes a report on the comprehensive Nituuchischaayihtitaau Aschii multi-community environment-and-health study conducted among the Cree peoples (Eeyouch) of northern Quebec, Canada.
to interpret observed concentrations of a suite of chemical elements in a multi-media biological monitoring study in terms of sources and predictors.
the concentrations of 5 essential and 6 toxic chemical elements were measured in whole blood, and/or in urine or hair by ICP-MS. Concentrations of essential elements are compared to those considered normal (i.e., required for good health) and, when toxic, deemed acceptable at specified concentrations in public health guidelines. Their dependence on age, sex, the specific community lived-in and diet were explored employing multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) involving new variables generated by principle component analysis (PCA) and correspondence analysis (CA).
the 5 most prominent PCA axes explained 67.7% of the variation, compared to 93.0% by 6 main CA factors. Concentrations of the essential elements in whole blood (WB) and iodine(i) and arsenic (As) in urine were comparable to those reported in the recent Canadian Health Measures survey and are assigned to dietary sources. By contrast, WB cadmium (Cd) was elevated even when smoking was considered. Mercury (Hg) concentrations in WB and hair were also higher in adults, although comparable to those observed for other indigenous populations living at northern latitudes. Fish consumption was identified as the prominent source. Of the 5 coastal communities, all but one had lower Hg exposures than the four inland communities, presumably reflecting the type of fish consumed. Use of firearms and smoking were correlated with WB-lead (Pb). The concentrations of both Hg and Pb increased with age and were higher in men, while WB-Cd and smoking prevalence were higher in women when considering all communities. Hg and Pb were low in children and women of reproductive age, with few exceedances of health guidelines. Although individuals with T2D had somewhat lower WB-Cd, there is some indication that Cd may potentiate renal dysfunction in this subgroup. Plots of selected CA axes grouped those elements expected to be in a normal diet and distinguished them from those with well-known unique sources (especially Hg and As in hair; and Hg, Pb and Cd in WB).
the use of multiple biological media in conjunction with the complementary PCA and CA approaches for constructing composite variables allowed a more detailed understanding of both the sources of the essential and toxic elements in body fluids and the dependencies of their observed concentrations on age, sex, community and diet.
Prenatal diagnostics ultrasound was established in Russia in 2000 as a routine method of screening for birth defects. The aims of the current study were twofold: to assess changes in birth defects prevalence at birth and perinatal mortality after ultrasound screening was implemented and to estimate prenatal detection rates for congenital malformations in the city of Monchegorsk (Murmansk County, North-West Russia).
The Murmansk County Birth Registry and the Kola Birth Registry were the primary sources of information, and include 30 448 pregnancy outcomes in Monchegorsk for the period 1973-2011. Data from these registries were supplemented with information derived from hospital records about pregnancy terminations for 2000-2007.
The total number of newborns with any kind of birth defects in Monchegorsk during 1973-2011 was 1099, of whom 816 were born in the 1973-2000 period. The prevalence of defects at birth increased from 34.2/1000 (95 % CI?=?31.9-36.5) to 42.8/1000 newborns (95 % CI?=?38.0-47.7) after prenatal ultrasound screening was formally implemented. We observed significant decreases (p?
Inuit and Cree populations are known for high obesity rates despite markedly different rates of type 2 diabetes (T2DM). To document this apparent discrepancy we evaluated the impact of body size parameters and fasting insulin (FI) on several T2DM risk factors among Inuit and Cree populations (Québec, Canada). A total of 1,104 adults (=18 years) Inuit and Cree individuals participated in a cross-sectional investigation. Interestingly, across both genders, across all levels of waist circumference (WC), Inuit showed lower levels of FI (age-adjusted, P
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends a mercury (Hg) hair-to-blood ratio of 250 for the conversion of Hg hair levels to those in whole blood. This encouraged the selection of hair as the preferred analyte because it minimizes collection, storage, and transportation issues. In spite of these advantages, there is concern about inherent uncertainties in the use of this ratio.
To evaluate the appropriateness of the WHO ratio, we investigated total hair and total blood Hg concentrations in 1333 individuals from 9 First Nations (Aboriginal) communities in northern Québec, Canada.
We grouped participants by sex, age, and community and performed a 3-factor (M)ANOVA for total Hg in hair (0-2 cm), total Hg in blood, and their ratio. In addition, we calculated the percent error associated with the use of the WHO ratio in predicting blood Hg concentrations from hair Hg. For group comparisons, Estimated Marginal Means (EMMS) were calculated following ANOVA.
At the community level, the error in blood Hg estimated from hair Hg ranged -25% to +24%. Systematic underestimation (-8.4%) occurred for females and overestimation for males (+5.8%). At the individual level, the corresponding error range was -98.7% to 1040%, with observed hair-to-blood ratios spanning 3 to 2845.
The application of the ratio endorsed by the WHO would be unreliable for determining individual follow-up. We propose that Hg exposure be assessed by blood measurements when there are human health concerns, and that the singular use of hair and the hair-to-blood concentration conversion be discouraged in establishing individual risk.
The foetal effects of occupational exposure to organic solvents in pregnancy are still unclear. Our aim was to study the risk of non-chromosomal congenital anomalies at birth in a well-defined population of singletons born to women employed as painters and spoolers in early pregnancy, compared to women in non-hazardous occupations.
The study population for this prospective cohort study was singleton newborns delivered to working mothers in the industrial community of Moncegorsk in the period 1973-2005. Occupational information and characteristics of the women and their newborns was obtained from the local population-based birth register.
The 597 women employed as painters, painter-plasterers or spoolers had 712 singleton births, whereof 31 (4.4%) were perinatally diagnosed with 37 malformations. Among the 10 561 newborns in the group classified as non-exposed, 397 (3.9%) had one or more malformations. The overall prevalence in the exposed group was 520/10 000 births [95% confidence limits (CL): 476, 564], and 436/10 000 births (95% CL: 396, 476) in the unexposed. Adjusted for young maternal age, smoking during pregnancy, maternal congenital malformation and year of birth, the odds ratio (OR) was 1.24 (95% CL: 0.85, 1.82); for multiple anomalies it was 1.54 (95% CL: 0.66, 3.59).The largest organ-system specific difference in prevalence between the two groups was observed for malformations of the circulatory system: 112/10 000 (95% CL: 35, 190) in the exposed group, and 42/10 000 (95% CL: 29, 54) in the unexposed, with an adjusted OR of 2.03 (95% CL: 0.85, 4.84). The adjusted ORs for malformations of the genital organs and musculoskeletal system were 2.24 (95% CI: 0.95, 5.31) and 1.12 (95% CI: (0.62, 2.02), respectively.
There appeared to be a higher risk of malformations of the circulatory system and genital organs at birth among newborns to women in occupations with organic solvent exposure during early pregnancy (predominantly employed as painters). However, the findings were not statistically conclusive. Considering that these two categories of malformations are not readily diagnosed perinatally, the difference in prevalence between the exposed and unexposed may have been underestimated.
Cites: Am J Ind Med. 1988;14(1):1-83407644
Cites: Br J Ind Med. 1987 Aug;44(8):527-333651351
Cites: J Occup Environ Med. 1995 Aug;37(8):908-148520952
Cites: Teratology. 1996 Aug;54(2):84-928948544
Cites: Occup Environ Med. 1997 Apr;54(4):223-89166126
Cites: Epidemiology. 1997 Jul;8(4):355-639209847
Cites: Occup Environ Med. 1998 Apr;55(4):284-69624284
Congenital anomalies of the kidney and the urinary tract (CAKUTs) are relatively common birth defects. The combined prevalence in Europe was 3.3 per 1000 in 2012. The risk factors for these anomalies are not clearly identified. The aims of our study were to calculate the birth prevalences of urinary malformations in Murmansk County during 2006 to 2011 and to investigate related prenatal risk factors.
The Murmansk County Birth Registry was the primary source of information and our study included 50,936 singletons in the examination of structure, prevalence and proportional distribution of CAKUTs. The multivariate analyses of risk factors involved 39,322 newborns.
The prevalence of CAKUTs was 4.0 per 1000 newborns (95% confidence interval [CI], 3.4-4.5) and did not change during the study period. The most prevalent malformation was congenital hydronephrosis (14.2% of all cases). Diabetes mellitus or gestational diabetes (odds ratio [OR]?=?4.77; 95% CI, 1.16-19.65), acute infections while pregnant (OR?=?1.83; 95% CI, 1.14-2.94), the use of medication during pregnancy (OR?=?2.03; 95% CI, 1.44-2.82), and conception during the summer (OR?=?1.75; 95% CI 1.15-2.66) were significantly associated with higher risk of CAKUTs.
The overall fourfold enhancement of the occurrence of urinary malformations in Murmansk County for the 2006 to 2011 period showed little annual dependence. During pregnancy, use of medications, infections, pre-existing diabetes mellitus, or gestational diabetes were associated with increased risk of these anomalies, as was conception during summer. Our findings have direct applications in improving prenatal care in Murmansk County and establishing targets for prenatal screening and women's consultations.
Aboriginal populations living in Canada's northern regions are exposed to a number of persistent organic pollutants through their traditional diet which includes substantial amounts of predator fish species. Exposure to dioxin-like compounds (DLCs) can cause a variety of toxic effects including adverse effects on bone tissue. This descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted to investigate the relationship between plasma concentrations of DLCs and bone quality parameters in Cree women of Eastern James Bay (Canada).
Two hundred and forty-nine Cree women from seven communities in Eastern James Bay (Canada), aged 35 to 74 years old, participated in the study. In order to determine the total DLC concentration in plasma samples of participants, we measured the aryl hydrocarbon receptor-mediated transcriptional activity elicited by plasma sample extracts using a luciferase reporter gene assay. Plasma concentrations of mono-ortho-substituted dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (DL-PCBs) 105, 118 and 156 were measured by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Bone quality parameters (speed of sound, m/s; broadband ultrasound attenuation, dB/MHz; stiffness index, %) were assessed by quantitative ultrasound at the right calcaneus with the Achilles InSight system. Several factors known to be associated with osteoporosis were documented by questionnaire. Multiple linear regression models were constructed for the three ultrasound parameters.
DL-PCBs 105 and 118 concentrations, but not the global DLC concentration, were inversely associated with the stiffness index, even after adjusting for several confounding factors. The stiffness index (log) decreased by -0.22% (p=0.0414) and -0.04% (p=0.0483) with an increase of one µg/L in plasma concentrations of DL-PCB 105 and DL-PCB 118, respectively. Other factors, including age, height, smoking status, menopausal status and the percentage of omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) in erythrocyte membranes were negatively associated with one of the ultrasound parameters, while the percentage of omega-3 PUFAs in these membranes and levels of physical activity and education were positively associated with them.
Our results show that an increase in plasma concentrations of DL-PCBs 105 and 118 was negatively associated with stiffness index, a measure of bone quality/strength, in women of this population. In addition to environmental contaminants, future studies should also consider PUFA intake as a factor influencing bone quality.
Cites: Can J Public Health. 2005 Jan-Feb;96 Suppl 1:S45-5015686153
Cites: Bone. 2008 May;42(5):990-518329354
Cites: Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 Apr;81(4):934-815817874
Cites: Environ Health Perspect. 2005 Jul;113(7):853-716002372