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Environ Health Perspect. 2017 Nov 13;125(11):117004. doi: 10.1289/EHP1062.

Exposure to Perfluoroalkyl Substances and Metabolic Outcomes in Pregnant Women: Evidence from the Spanish INMA Birth Cohorts.

Author information

1
ISGlobal, Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), Barcelona, Spain.
2
Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF), Barcelona, Spain.
3
Spanish Consortium for Research on Epidemiology and Public Health (CIBERESP), Madrid, Spain.
4
Department of Environmental Health, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
5
Epidemiology and Environmental Health Joint Research Unit, FISABIO-Universitat de València, Valencia, Spain.
6
Subdirección de Salud Pública y Adicciones de Gipuzkoa, San Sebastián, Spain.
7
Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria Biodonostia, San Sebastián, Spain.
8
Institute for Occupational Medicine, Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule (RWTH) Aachen University, Aachen, Germany.
9
Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry/Psychology, Erasmus University Medical Centre-Sophia Children's Hospital, Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Exposure to perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) may increase risk for metabolic diseases; however, epidemiologic evidence is lacking at the present time. Pregnancy is a period of enhanced tissue plasticity for the fetus and the mother and may be a critical window of PFAS exposure susceptibility.

OBJECTIVE:

We evaluated the associations between PFAS exposures and metabolic outcomes in pregnant women.

METHODS:

We analyzed 1,240 pregnant women from the Spanish INMA [Environment and Childhood Project (INfancia y Medio Ambiente)] birth cohort study (recruitment period: 2003-2008) with measured first pregnancy trimester plasma concentrations of four PFASs (in nanograms/milliliter). We used logistic regression models to estimate associations of PFASs (log10-transformed and categorized into quartiles) with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) and gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), and we used linear regression models to estimate associations with first-trimester serum levels of triglycerides, total cholesterol, and C-reactive protein (CRP).

RESULTS:

Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS) were positively associated with IGT (137 cases) [OR per log10-unit increase=1.99 (95% CI: 1.06, 3.78) and OR=1.65 ( 95% CI: 0.99, 2.76), respectively]. PFOS and PFHxS associations with GDM (53 cases) were in a similar direction, but less precise. PFOS and perfluorononanoate (PFNA) were negatively associated with triglyceride levels [percent median change per log10-unit increase=-5.86% (95% CI: -9.91%, -1.63%) and percent median change per log10-unit increase=-4.75% (95% CI: -8.16%, -0.61%, respectively], whereas perfluorooctanoate (PFOA) was positively associated with total cholesterol [percent median change per log10-unit increase=1.26% (95% CI: 0.01%, 2.54%)]. PFASs were not associated with CRP in the subset of the population with available data (n=640).

CONCLUSIONS:

Although further confirmation is required, the findings from this study suggest that PFAS exposures during pregnancy may influence lipid metabolism and glucose tolerance and thus may impact the health of the mother and her child. https://doi.org/10.1289/EHP1062.

PMID:
29135438
PMCID:
PMC5947948
DOI:
10.1289/EHP1062
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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