A trace analytical method is presented for the analysis of hydroxylated polychlorinated biphenyl metabolites (HO-PCBs) and pentachlorophenol (PCP) in human plasma. The described methodology is a modification of a previously validated method used for PCB and organochlorine pesticide analysis. The modified method enables the combined analysis of phenolic and neutral halogenated compounds. A tandem Florisil column is used for separating the HO-PCBs and PCP from the neutral fraction, instead of the more common chemical partitioning. In the same step the neutral fraction is purified for GC analysis. The extraction of the HO-PCBs and PCP was found to be highly dependent on sufficient acidification of the sample and the polarity of the extracting solvent. Analysis of plasma samples gave recovery rates for (13)C(6)-PCP and (13)C(12)-4-HO-CB 187 of 64 and 72%, respectively. The limit of detection ranged between 2-20 pg g(-1) plasma for the HO-PCBs and 5 pg g(-1) plasma for PCP. No matrix interferences were observed in the chromatograms. In plasma samples (n = 15) from the native Chukchi people in Uelen (Russian Arctic), a population with high PCB exposure, the median ratio of sum HO-PCBs to sum PCBs was as high as 0.4 and the sum HO-PCBs and PCBs were significantly correlated (r(2) > 0.7, p
In this study, we identified the main hydroxylated polychlorinated biphenyls (OH-PCBs) and other chlorinated phenolic compounds and we determined their relative concentrations in whole blood from 13 male and 17 female Inuit from northern Quebec, Canada, and from a pooled whole blood sample from southern Quebec. We also determined concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Total OH-PCB concentrations were variable among the Inuit samples, ranging over 2 orders of magnitude (0.117-11.6 ng/g whole blood wet weight). These concentrations were equal to and up to 70 times those found for the southern Quebec pooled whole blood sample. Geometric mean concentrations of total OH-PCBs were 1.73 and 1.01 ng/g whole blood for Inuit men and women, respectively, and 0.161 ng/g whole blood for the southern population pool. There are limited data available for comparison, but the levels of OH-PCBs in Inuit are higher than those previously reported in the literature for other populations. There was a significant correlation (p
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
This study examined the association between self-reported diabetes, fish consumption and serum levels of organochlorines in a First Nation community. One quarter of the 101 participants reported diabetes. Serum PCBs, but not p,p'-DDE, were positively correlated to consumption frequency of total fish, walleye and pike, but not trout. Reported diabetes was positively associated to p,p'-DDE and some PCB congeners. Odds Ratios (OR) for reported diabetes for those in the upper 75th percentile for serum p,p'-DDE compared to the others were 3.5 (95% CI 1-13.8) and 6.1 (95% CI 1.4-27.3) (weight wet and lipid-standardized values, respectively) and for total sum of PCBs: 4.91 (95% CI 1.4-19.0) and 5.51 (95% CI 1.3-24.1). For participants who were in the upper 50th percentile for trout and white fish intake, reported diabetes was respectively 6 and 4 times lower compared to the others. These findings support the hypothesis that environmental exposure to elevated p,p'-DDE and PCBs is associated with increased risk of diabetes. Consumption of trout and white fish may be beneficial to reduce risk.
We are daily exposed to many different environmental contaminants. Mixtures of these contaminants could act together to induce more pronounced effects than the sum of the individual contaminants. To evaluate the effects of such mixtures, it is of importance to assess the co-variance amongst the contaminants. Thirty-seven environmental contaminants representing different classes were measured in blood samples from 1016 individuals aged 70 years. Hierarchical cluster analysis and principal component analysis were used to assess the co-variation among the contaminants. Within each identified cluster, possible marker contaminants were sought for. We validated our findings using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2003-2004 study. Two large clusters could be identified, one representing low/medium chlorinated polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) (=6 chlorine atoms), as well as two pesticides and one representing medium/high chlorinated PCBs (=6 chlorine atoms). PCBs 118 and 153 could be used as markers for the low/medium chlorinated cluster and PCBs 170 and 209 could be used as markers for the medium/high chlorinated cluster. This pattern was similar to data from the NHANES study. Apart from the PCBs, little co-variation was seen among the contaminants. Thus, a large number of chemicals have to be measured to adequately identify mixtures of environmental contaminants.
Recent studies have shown that the detrimental effects of anthropogenic pollutants may be worse if organisms are exposed to natural stress. In this study, we examined whether negative effects of organochlorines (OCs) could be influenced by parasites. In two breeding seasons, we administered an anti-helminthic drug to groups of breeding glaucous gulls (Larus hyperboreus), whereas control groups were placebo treated. In all birds, blood residues of the most important OCs in the study population (hexachlorobenzene, oxychlordane, p,p'-dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene and polychlorinated biphenyl), were measured. The relationships between OCs and fitness components (i.e. nesting success and return rate between breeding seasons) were then compared between the birds receiving anti-parasite treatment and the controls. Among untreated males, higher blood residues of OCs were associated with lowered nesting success, while in males receiving anti-parasite treatment, there was no detrimental effect of OCs on fitness. Return rate was not affected by treatment or OCs. Our findings suggest that parasites may be an important factor in triggering reproductive effects of such pollutants, and that relatively low levels of OCs may have serious reproductive consequences in natural populations when stress from other sources is high.
Serum concentrations of CB-153 and p,p'-DDE were assessed for 354 men and women from the Swedish Fishermen's Families Cohort, and were found to correlate very well (Pearson's r=0.72). In this particular cohort the main source of exposure to persistent organochlorine compounds are consumption of contaminated fatty fish. High correlations between total PCB/CB-153 and p,p'-DDE have also been found in other population with similar exposure, but not in populations whose major source of exposure to persistent organochlorine compounds is not necessarily through the consumption of contaminated sea food. The authors suggest that when investigating a possible relation between exposure to persistent organochlorine compounds and different health outcomes in populations with exposure similar to the Swedish Fishermen's Families Cohort, there may be no need to analyze more than either CB-153 or p,p'-DDE.
Exposure to persistent organochlorine pollutants (POPs) may have negative impact on male reproductive function. We, therefore, investigated the association between serum levels of POPs and epididymal and accessory sex gland function. Serum levels of CB-153, p,p'-DDE and seminal markers of epididymal [neutral-alpha glucosidase (NAG)], prostatic [prostate specific-antigen (PSA)] and zinc, and seminal vesicle function (fructose) were measured from 135 Swedish fishermen and fertile men from Greenland (n=163), Warsaw, Poland (n=167) and Kharkiv, Ukraine (n=158). Multiple linear regression analyses, adjusting for potential confounders, were employed using both continuous and categorized exposure variables. Both exposure and outcome variables were log transformed. Considering the consistency between models with either continuous or categorized CB-153 levels, negative associations with the activity of NAG were found among Greenlandic men (mean difference 7.0 mU/ejaculate, 95% CI 3.0, 34), and in the aggregated cohort (mean difference 4.0 mU/ejaculate, 95% CI -0.2, 8.0). A positive association was observed between CB-153 and PSA as well as zinc among Kharkiv men. In the Swedish cohort, a negative association was found between CB-153 and fructose. In conclusion, the negative effects of POP on sperm motility, observed in the same study population might partly be caused by post-testicular mechanisms, involving a decreased epididymal function.
Department of Environmental Medicine, Institute of Public Health, University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark (JLT-P, HRA, PG, and TKJ); the Research Unit for Dietary Studies, Institute of Preventive Medicine, Copenhagen University Hospitals, Frederiksberg, Denmark (JLT-P and BLH); the National Institute of Public Health, University of Southern Denmark, Copenhagen, Denmark (BLH); the Boden Institute of Obesity, Nutrition, Exercise & Eating Disorders, Sydney Medical School, Sydney, Australia (BLH); the Department of Occupational Medicine and Public Health, Tórshavn, Faroe Islands (US); and the Department of Environmental Medicine, Faroese Hospital System, Tórshavn, Faroe Islands (PW).
Chemicals with endocrine-disrupting abilities may act as obesogens and interfere with the body's natural weight-control mechanisms, especially if exposure occurs during prenatal life.
We examined the association between prenatal exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and p,p'-dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (DDE) and subsequent obesity at 5 and 7 y of age.
From 1997 to 2000, 656 pregnant Faroese women were recruited. PCB and DDE were measured in maternal serum and breast milk, and children's weight, height, and waist circumference (WC) were measured at clinical examinations at 5 and 7 y of age. The change in body mass index (BMI) from 5 to 7 y of age was calculated. Analyses were performed by using multiple linear regression models for girls and boys separately, taking into account maternal prepregnancy BMI.
For 7-y-old girls who had overweight mothers, PCB was associated with increased BMI (ß = 2.07, P = 0.007), and PCB and DDE were associated with an increased change in BMI from 5 to 7 y of age (PCB: ß = 1.23, P = 0.003; DDE: ß = 1.11, P = 0.008). No association was observed with BMI in girls with normal-weight mothers. PCB was associated with increased WC in girls with overweight mothers (ß = 2.48, P = 0.001) and normal-weight mothers (ß = 1.25, P = 0.04); DDE was associated with increased WC only in girls with overweight mothers (ß = 2.21, P = 0.002). No associations were observed between PCB or DDE and BMI in 5-y-old girls. For boys, no associations were observed.
Results suggest that prenatal exposure to PCB and DDE may play a role for subsequent obesity development. Girls whose mothers have a high prepregnancy BMI seem most affected.
BACKGROUND: Animal and epidemiologic data indicate that exposure to persistent organochlorine pollutants (POPs) may disrupt the hypothalamus-pituitary-thyroid (HPT) and the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axes. We have assessed whether the POP-biomarkers 2,2'4,4',5,5'-hexachlorobiphenyl (CB-153) and 1,1-dichloro-2,2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)-ethene (p,p'-DDE) affect thyrotropin (TSH), thyroid hormones, gonadotropins or sex hormone concentrations in men. METHODS: Lipid adjusted serum concentrations of CB-153, and p,p'-DDE, were determined in 196 men (median age 59 years, range 48-82). Hormone analyses in serum were performed with immunoassays. The effect of CB-153 and p,p'-DDE (as continuous or categorized variables) were evaluated by linear regression models, adjusting for potential confounders. RESULTS: There was a significant positive association between p,p'-DDE and TSH. An increase of 100 ng/g lipid of p,p'-DDE corresponded to an increase of 0.03 mU/l (95% Confidence Interval (CI) 0.01, 0.05) in TSH level. The explanatory value (R(2)) of the multivariate model was only 7%. Moreover, there was a significant negative association between p,p'-DDE and estradiol. An increase of 100 ng/g lipid of p,p'-DDE corresponded to a decrease of 0.57 pmol/l (95% CI -1.0, -0.12) in estradiol level. The R(2)-value was only 4%. No associations were observed between any of the POP biomarkers and the other hormones. CONCLUSIONS: The positive association between p,p'-DDE and TSH and the negative association between p,p'-DDE and estradiol, among middle-aged and elderly men, were not accompanied by associations between the POP-markers and thyroxin, testosterone, and gonadotropins, respectively. The results gives some additional support for that POP exposure may affect HPT- and HPG-axes also in humans, but the overall epidemiological data are still not coherent enough to allow any firm conclusions.