Department of Environmental Medicine, Institute of Public Health (C.A.G.T., L.I.R., C.D., P.G., F.N., T.K.J.), and Institute of Sports Science and Clinical Biomechanics (A.G., M.R.-L., L.B.A.), University of Southern Denmark, 5000 Odense C, Denmark; and Department of Biostatistics (K.D.S., T.S.), University of Copenhagen, 1353 Copenhagen, Denmark.
Our objective was to explore whether childhood exposure to perfluorinated and polyfluorinated compounds (PFCs), widely used stain- and grease-repellent chemicals, is associated with adiposity and markers of glycemic control.
Body mass index, skinfold thickness, waist circumference, leptin, adiponectin, insulin, glucose, and triglyceride concentrations were assessed in 8- to 10-year-old children in 1997 in a subset of the European Youth Heart Study, Danish component. Plasma PFC concentrations were available from 499 children. Linear regression models were performed to determine the association between PFC exposure and indicators of adiposity and markers of glycemic control.
There was no association between PFC exposures and adiposity or markers of glycemic control in normal-weight children. Among overweight children, an increase of 10 ng perfluorooctane sulfonic acid/mL plasma was associated with 16.2% (95% confidence interval [CI], 5.2%-28.3%) higher insulin concentration, 12.0% (95% CI, 2.4%-22.4%) higher ß-cell activity, 17.6% (95% CI, 5.8%-30.8%) higher insulin resistance, and 8.6% (95% CI, 1.2%-16.5%) higher triglyceride concentrations, and an increase of 10 ng perfluorooctanoic acid/mL plasma was associated with 71.6% (95% CI, 2.4%-187.5%) higher insulin concentration, 67.5% (95% CI, 5.5%-166.0%) higher ß-cell function, 73.9% (95% CI, 0.2%-202.0%) higher insulin resistance, and 76.2% (95% CI, 22.8%-153.0%) higher triglyceride concentrations.
Increased PFC exposure in overweight 8- to 10-year-old children was associated with higher insulin and triglyceride concentrations. Chance findings may explain some of our results, and due to the cross-sectional design, reverse causation cannot be excluded. The findings therefore need to be confirmed in longitudinal studies.
OBJECTIVES: Exposure to persistent organohalogen pollutants was suggested to impair male reproductive function. A gene-environment interaction has been proposed. No genes modifying the effect of persistent organohalogen pollutants on reproductive organs have yet been identified. We aimed to investigate whether the CAG and GGN polymorphisms in the androgen receptor gene modify the effect of persistent organohalogen pollutant exposure on human sperm characteristics. METHODS: Semen and blood from 680 men [mean (SD) age 34 (10) years] from Greenland, Sweden, Warsaw (Poland) and Kharkiv (Ukraine) were collected. Persistent organohalogen pollutant exposure was assessed by measuring serum levels of 2,2',4,4',5,5'-hexachlorobiphenyl (CB-153) and dichlorodiphenyl dichloroethene (p,p'-DDE). Semen characteristics (volume, sperm concentration, total count, proportion of progressively motile and morphology) and DNA fragmentation index (DFI) were determined. CAG and GGN repeat lengths were determined by direct sequencing of leukocyte DNA. RESULTS: A statistically significant interaction was found between the CB-153 group and CAG repeat category in relation to sperm concentration and total sperm count (P=0.03 and 0.01, respectively). For p,p'-DDE, in the European cohorts a significant interaction was found in relation to DFI (P=0.01). For CAG
The Inuit in Greenland have a high average consumption of marine species and are highly exposed to methylmercury, which in other studies has been related to hypertension. Data on the relation between methylmercury and hypertension is limited, especially in populations subjected to a high exposure of methylmercury. We examined the relation between whole blood mercury and blood pressure (BP) in Inuit in Greenland.
A cross-sectional population-based study among adult Inuit in Greenland was performed in 2005-2009. Information on socio-demography, lifestyle, BP, blood samples and clinical measurements was obtained - the latter after overnight fasting. BP was measured according to standardized guidelines. Whole blood mercury concentration was used as a marker of exposure. The analyses were restricted to Inuit aged 30-69 years with four Greenlandic grandparents (N = 1,861). Multivariate regression analyses with inclusion of confounders were done separately for men and women with the omission of participants receiving anti-hypertensive drugs, except for logistic regression analyses of the relation between mercury and presence of hypertension (yes/no).
The mean whole blood mercury level was 20.5 µg/L among men and 14.7 µg/L among women. In multivariate analyses adjusted for confounders, diastolic BP decreased with increasing mercury concentration. In men diastolic BP decreased significantly for each four-fold increase in mercury concentration (Beta = -0.04, standard error = 0.01, p = 0.001), while no relation between mercury and diastolic BP was found among women. For systolic BP, a similar non-statistically significant result was seen only for men (Beta = -0.02, standard error = 0.01, p = 0.06). A relation between mercury and hypertension was only found in men; the odds ratio for hypertension was 0.99 (95% CI: 0.98-0.99). No relation between quintiles of mercury and hypertension was found. The relationship between mercury and BP parameters may be non-linear: In analyses of quintiles of mercury the overall effect of mercury on BP parameters was only statistically significant for diastolic BP among men (Wald test, p = 0.01), however pairwise comparisons showed that some quintiles were not statistically different. This result is supported by LOESS modelling.
No adverse associations between whole blood mercury and blood pressure were found. With increasing whole blood mercury concentrations, diastolic BP and the risk of hypertension decreased among men in the study: this may be explained by confounding by exercise or unknown factors.
Association of maternal serum concentrations of 2,2', 4,4'5,5'-hexachlorobiphenyl (CB-153) and 1,1-dichloro-2,2-bis (p-chlorophenyl)-ethylene (p,p'-DDE) levels with birth weight, gestational age and preterm births in Inuit and European populations.
Epidemiological studies on the association between maternal exposure to persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and fetal growth alteration report inconsistent findings which weights in favor of additional studies.
Blood samples were collected from interviewed pregnant women in Greenland (572), Kharkiv (611) and Warsaw (258) and were analyzed for CB-153 and p,p'-DDE by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Data on birth weight, gestational age and preterm birth were obtained for 1322 singleton live births. We examined the association between natural log-transformed serum POPs concentration and birth weight and gestational age using multiple linear regression and the association with prematurity using logistic regression controlling for potential confounding factors.
The median serum concentrations of CB-153 and p,p'-DDE were for Inuit mothers 105.6 and 298.9, for Kharkiv mothers 27.0 and 645.4 and for Warsaw mothers 10.7 and 365.2 ng/g lipids, respectively. Increase in CB-153 concentration by one unit on the log scale in Inuit mothers serum was associated with significant decrease in infant birth weight of -59 g and gestational age by -0.2 week. Decreases observed in the cohorts in Kharkiv (-10 g and -0.1 week) and in Warsaw (-49 g and -0.2 week) were not statistically significant. Increase in p,p'-DDE concentration by one unit on the log scale was associated with a statistically significant decrease in infant birth weight of -39.4 g and -104.3 g and shortening of gestational age of -0.2 week and -0.6 week in the Inuit and Warsaw cohorts, respectively. In the Kharkiv cohort decrease in birth weight (-30.5 g) was not significant, however a shortening of gestational age of -0.2 week per increase in p,p'-DDE concentration by one unit on the log scale was of the borderline significance. There was no significant association between CB-153 and p,p'-DDE concentrations and risk of preterm birth however, in all cohorts the odds ratio was above 1.
In utero exposure to POPs may reduce birth weight and gestational age of newborns however, new insights as to why results vary across studies were not apparent.
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Methylmercury, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) are ubiquitous and persistent environmental chemicals with known or suspected toxic effects on the nervous system and the immune system. Animal studies have shown that tissue damage can elicit production of autoantibodies. However, it is not known if autoantibodies similarly will be generated and detectable in humans following toxicant exposures. Therefore, we conducted a pilot study to investigate if autoantibodies specific for neural and non-neural antigens could be detected in children at age 7 years who have been exposed to environmental chemicals. Both prenatal and age-7 exposures to mercury, PCBs, and PFCs were measured in 38 children in the Faroe Islands who were exposed to widely different levels of these chemicals due to their seafood-based diet. Concentrations of IgM and IgG autoantibodies specific to both neural (neurofilaments, cholineacetyltransferase, astrocyte glial fibrillary acidic protein, and myelin basic protein) and non-neural (actin, desmin, and keratin) antigens were measured and the associations of these autoantibody concentrations with chemical exposures were assessed using linear regression. Age-7 blood-mercury concentrations were positively associated with titers of multiple neural- and non-neural-specific antibodies, mostly of the IgM isotype. Additionally, prenatal blood-mercury and -PCBs were negatively associated with anti-keratin IgG and prenatal PFOS was negatively associated with anti-actin IgG. These exploratory findings demonstrate that autoantibodies can be detected in the peripheral blood following exposure to environmental chemicals. The unexpected association of exposures with antibodies specific for non-neural antigens suggests that these chemicals may have toxicities that have not yet been recognized.
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The paper presents the results of an investigation of the blood levels of mercury, lead, and cadmium in women of indigenous ethnic groups in the Far North. A certain correlation was found between the higher incidence of some poor pregnancy outcomes and fetal maldevelopment upon increased maternal exposure to heavy metals. The found correlations were statistically insignificant. There was no significant association of female exposure to heavy metals with menstrual irregularities and the sex ratio of neonates.
Studies conducted in the Faeroe Islands and Japan suggest a negative impact of mercury on heart rate variability (HRV) among children while the results regarding blood pressure (BP) are less consistent.
To assess the impact of mercury on HRV and BP among Nunavik Inuit children.
A cohort of 226 children was followed from birth to 11 years old. Mercury concentration in cord blood and in blood and hair at 11 years old were used as markers of prenatal and childhood exposure, respectively. HRV was measured using ambulatory 2 h-Holter monitoring while BP was measured through a standardized protocol. Simple regression was used to assess the relationship of mercury to BP and HRV parameters. Multiple linear regressions were performed adjusting for covariates such as age, sex, birth weight, body mass index (BMI), height, total n-3 fatty acids, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB 153), lead, selenium and maternal smoking during pregnancy.
Median cord blood mercury and blood mercury levels at 11 years old were 81.5 nmoL/L (IQR:45.0?140.0) and 14.5 nmol/L (IQR: 7.5?28.0), respectively. After adjusting for the covariates, child blood mercury was associated with low frequency (LF) (b = 0.21, p = 0.05), the standard deviation of R?R intervals (SDNN) (b = 0.26, p = 0.02), the standard deviation of R?R intervals measured over 5 min periods (SDANN) (b = 0.31, p = 0.01) and the coefficient of variation of R?R intervals (CVRR) (b = 0.06,p = 0.02). No significant association was observed with BP.
Mercury exposure during childhood seems to affect HRV among Nunavik Inuit children at school age.
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and dioxin given to experimental animals increase the blood pressure. We therefore investigated if circulating levels of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) were related to hypertension in a population-based sample of men and women.
One thousand and sixteen subjects aged 70 years were investigated in the Prospective Investigation of the Vasculature in Uppsala Seniors (PIVUS) study. Twenty-three POPs were analyzed using high-resolution gas chromatography/high-resolution mass spectrometry (HRGC/HRMS). Hypertension was defined as a systolic blood pressure =140mmHg or a diastolic blood pressure =90mmHg, and/or use of antihypertensive medication.
Seven hundred and thirty-two subjects (72%) showed hypertension. When the POPs were treated as continuous variables and adjusted for gender only, two PCBs with a low number of chlorine atoms (PCB 105 and 118) were related to prevalent hypertension. Also the OC pesticide p,p'-DDE was related to hypertension. The strongest of these associations was seen for p,p'-DDE (OR 1.35 for a 1 SD change, 95% CI 1.17-1.56, p
To evaluate ecologically allowable level of serum metals content in humans for making regional background normal level, the number of heavy metal ions should be determined in healthy human serum and simultaneously homeostasis parameters (hemolysis, biochemistry, immunologic) should be measured--clinically normal limits of these parameters are responsible for safe levels of of the heavy metals in human body. The suggested levels of metals in healthy human serum could serve as clinical MACs.
BACKGROUND: Experimental evidence supports the hypothesis that persistent organochlorine pollutants (POPs) may cause type 2 diabetes mellitus, whereas there is no fully convincing epidemiological evidence for such an association. In Sweden the most important source of POP exposure is fatty fish. We have assessed the association between serum levels of POPs and prevalence of diabetes in Swedish fishermen and their wives, with high consumption of fatty fish from the Baltic Sea. METHODS: In 196 men (median age 60 years) and 184 women (median age 64 years), we analyzed 2,2',4,4',5,5'-hexachlorobiphenyl (CB-153) and 1,1-dichloro-2,2-bis(p-chlorophenyl)-ethylene (p,p'-DDE) in serum using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The participants were asked if they had diabetes and, if so, since which year and about medication and diet. The Odds Ratios (OR) for diabetes with respect to continuous exposure variables were analyzed with logistic regression, adjusting for potential confounders. Moreover trends of diabetes prevalence with respect to trichotomized exposure variables were tested with Jonckheere-Terpstra's test. RESULTS: Six percent of the men and 5% of the women had diabetes. After confounder adjustment CB-153 was significantly associated with diabetes prevalence using both categorized and continuous exposure data (an increase of 100 ng/g lipid corresponded to an OR of 1.16, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.03, 1.32, p = 0.03). Similar associations were observed for p,p'-DDE (an increase of 100 ng/g lipid corresponded to an OR of 1.05, 95% CI 1.01, 1.09, p = 0.006). Gender stratified analyses showed among men consistent positive associations with CB-153, but a more ambiguous pattern with respect to DDE. In contrast, among the women the associations with p,p'-DDE were stronger than with CB-153. CONCLUSION: The study provides support that POP exposure might contribute to type 2 diabetes mellitus.