Mondal et al 2012: Relationships of Perfluorooctanoate and Perfluorooctane Sulfonate Serum Concentrations Between Child-Mother Pairs in a Population with Perfluorooctanoate Exposure from Drinking Water

Mondal, D., Lopez-Espinosa, M.J., Armstrong, B., Stein, C.R., and Fletcher, T. Relationships of Perfluorooctanoate and Perfluorooctane Sulfonate Serum Concentrations Between Child-Mother Pairs in a Population with Perfluorooctanoate Exposure from Drinking Water. Environ Health Perspect. 2012 Jan 23.

Background: There are limited data on the associations between maternal, newborn and child exposure to perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs), including perfluorooctanoate (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS). This study provides an opportunity to assess the association between PFAA concentrations in mother-child pairs in a population exposed to PFOA via drinking water.

Objectives: To determine the relationship between child-mother PFAA serum concentrations, and examine how the child:mother ratio varies with child’s age, child’s gender, drinking water PFOA concentration, reported bottle water usage and mother’s breastfeeding intention.

Methods: We studied 4,943 child-mother pairs (child age: 1-19 years). The child:mother PFAA ratio was stratified by possible determinants. Results are summarized as geometric mean ratios and correlation coefficients between child-mother pairs, overall and within strata.

Results: Child and mother PFOA and PFOS concentrations were correlated (r=0.82 and 0.26, respectively). Children had higher serum PFOA concentrations than their mothers up to about age 12 years. The highest child:mother PFOA ratio was found among children ≤5 years (44% higher than their mothers) which we attribute to in utero exposure and to exposure via breast milk and drinking water. Higher PFOS concentrations in children persisted until at least 19 years of age (42% higher than their mothers). Boys aged >5 years had significantly higher PFOA and PFOS child:mother ratios than girls.

Conclusion: Concentrations of both PFOA and PFOS tended to be higher in children than their mothers. This difference persists until they are about 12 years for PFOA and at least until 19 years of age for PFOS.

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