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J Endocrinol Invest. 2018 Jun;41(6):639-645. doi: 10.1007/s40618-017-0790-z. Epub 2017 Nov 17.

Impact of perfluorochemicals on human health and reproduction: a male's perspective.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine, Unit of Andrology and Medicine of Human Reproduction, Università degli Studi di Padova, Via Giustiniani, 2, 35128, Padua, Italy. carlo.foresta@unipd.it.
2
Department of Medicine, Unit of Andrology and Medicine of Human Reproduction, Università degli Studi di Padova, Via Giustiniani, 2, 35128, Padua, Italy.

Abstract

Perfluoroalkyl compounds (PFCs) are a class of organic molecules used in industry and consumer products. PFCs are non-biodegradable and bioaccumulate in the environment and for these reasons they have been a major subject of research regarding their toxicity, environmental fate, and sources of human exposure, since they have been shown to induce severe health consequences, such as neonatal mortality, neurotoxicity and immunotoxicity. The aim of this review is to explore the existing knowledge of the interplay between PFCs exposure and human health, with a focus on male reproductive health, given the emerging gender differences in PFCs clearance and their interaction with sex hormones receptors. A comprehensive PUBMED search was performed using relevant key terms for PFCs and male fertility. Different degrees of evidence suggest an impairment of semen parameters and sex hormones in relation to PFCs exposure. These preliminary results point towards a sex-dependent pharmacodynamics and clearance, with males having a much higher tendency to accumulation. Moreover, because of the widespread environmental occurrence of these chemicals, along with their ability to cross the placental barrier, exposure of the foetus to these compounds is inevitable. This is of concern because foetal development of the male reproductive organs may be disturbed by exposure to exogenous factors. These findings clearly suggest an antiandrogenic potential of PFCs and a link between endocrine disruptors and disorders of male health.

KEYWORDS:

Androgen receptor; Endocrine disruptors; Infertility; Male health; Sexual development

PMID:
29147953
DOI:
10.1007/s40618-017-0790-z
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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