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Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2018 Mar;27(3):331-337. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-17-0773. Epub 2017 Dec 20.

Urinary Concentrations of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon Metabolites in Maté Drinkers in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.

Author information

1
Gastroenterology Service, Hospital de Clínicas de Porto Alegre, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. ablopes@hcpa.edu.br.
2
Programa de Pós Graduação Ciências em Gastroenterologia e Hepatologia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.
3
Gastroenterology Service, Hospital de Clínicas de Porto Alegre, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.
4
Departamento de Clínica Médica, Universidade Federal de Santa Maria, Santa Maria, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.
5
Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Maryland.
6
National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia.

Abstract

Background: Consumption of maté, an infusion of the herb Ilex paraguariensis (yerba maté), is associated with increased risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), but the carcinogenic mechanism is unclear. Commercial brands of yerba maté contain high levels of carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are acquired during the traditional drying process. The purpose of this study was to characterize exposure to PAHs in maté drinkers over a wide range of maté consumption.Methods: We recruited 244 adults who answered a questionnaire and collected a fasting spot urine specimen. We quantified urinary concentrations of seven PAH metabolites and assessed associations between self-reported recent maté consumption and urinary PAH metabolites by multivariate regression.Results: Recent maté consumption showed a significant dose-response association with 6 of 7 PAH metabolites in unadjusted models (Ptrend < 0.05). After adjustment for creatinine and potential confounders, concentrations of 2-naphthol, 1-hydroxyphenanthrene, and the sum of 2- and 3-hydroxyphenanthrene remained significantly associated with recent maté intake. The sum of the urinary concentrations of the phenanthrene metabolites was similar or higher among maté drinkers who did not smoke than among smokers who did not drink matéConclusions: Urinary concentrations of PAH metabolites were significantly associated with self-reported amounts of recent maté intake, and drinking maté increased urinary concentrations of some PAH metabolites as much as smoking cigarettes.Impact: Drinking maté is a source of exposure to potentially carcinogenic PAHs, consistent with the hypothesis that the PAH content of maté may contribute to the increased risk of ESCC in maté drinkers. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev; 27(3); 331-7. ©2017 AACR.

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