Environ Int. 2021 Sep;154:106565. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2021.106565. Epub 2021 Apr 23.
Exposures to phthalate compounds have been linked to adverse birth outcomes, potentially through oxidative stress mechanisms. We explored associations between mixtures of biomarkers of phthalate and phthalate replacement metabolites and oxidative stress using lipid peroxidation biomarker 8-iso-prostaglandin-F2α (8-iso-PGF2α). As 8-iso-PGF2α can be generated via both chemical (nonenzymatic) and enzymatic lipid peroxidation pathways, we calculated the ratio of 8-iso-PGF2α/prostaglandin F2α in an attempt to distinguish the potential contributions of the two pathways. Urinary biomarker measurements were taken from 775 pregnant women in the Puerto Rico Testsite for Exploring Contamination Threats (PROTECT) longitudinal birth cohort at up to three time points during gestation (16-20, 20-24, and 24-28 weeks gestation). Adaptive elastic net with pairwise linear interaction terms (adENET-I) was used to determine individual phthalate metabolites and phthalate interactions that were predictive of lipid oxidative stress biomarkers, and to subsequently create environmental risk scores (ERS) to represent weighted sums of phthalate exposure for each individual at each study visit. Repeated ERS were then used in linear mixed effects models to test for associations between biomarkers of phthalate mixtures and biomarkers of oxidative stress. We also used Bayesian kernel machine regression (BKMR) to explore nonlinearity and interactions between phthalate metabolites within the mixture. An increase from the first to fourth quartile of phthalate ERS derived from adENET-I was associated with a 96.7% increase (95% CI: 74.0, 122) in the hypothesized chemical fraction of 8-iso-PGF2α and a 268% increase (95% CI: 139, 465) in the hypothesized enzymatic fraction of 8-iso-PGF2α. BKMR analyses also suggested strong linear associations between the phthalate mixture and biomarkers of lipid oxidative stress. Various phthalates displayed nonlinear relationships with both chemical and enzymatic fractions of 8-iso-PGF2α, and we observed some evidence of interactions between metabolites in the mixture. In conclusion, exposure to phthalate mixtures was strongly associated with linear increases in biomarkers of lipid oxidative stress, and differences observed between hypothesized chemical and enzymatic lipid peroxidation outcomes highlight the need to critically assess pathways of 8-iso-PGF2α generation in relation to environmental exposures.