Chemosphere. 2024 Jul;360:142363. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2024.142363. Epub 2024 May 18.


BACKGROUND: Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are synthetic chemicals linked to adverse pregnancy outcomes. Although their underlying biological mechanisms are not fully understood, evidence suggests PFAS may disrupt endocrine functions and contribute to oxidative stress (OS) and inflammation.

OBJECTIVE: We examined associations between early pregnancy PFAS exposure and OS biomarkers, exploring potential effect modifications by fetal sex and maternal race.

METHODS: We used data from 469 LIFECODES participants with measured plasma PFAS (median 10 weeks gestation) and repeated measures (median 10, 18, 26, and 35 weeks gestation) of urinary OS biomarkers [8-iso-prostaglandin-F2α (8-isoprostane) and 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine (8-OHdG)]. Protein damage biomarkers (chlorotyrosine, dityrosine, and nitrotyrosine) were additionally measured in plasma from a subset (N = 167) during the third visit. Associations between each PFAS and OS biomarkers were examined using linear mixed-effects models and multivariable linear regressions, adjusting for potential confounders, including maternal age, race, education level, pre-pregnancy BMI, insurance status, and parity. Effect modifications were evaluated by including an interaction term between each PFAS and fetal sex or maternal race in the models.

RESULTS: We observed significant positive associations between PFOS and 8-isoprostane, with a 9.68% increase in 8-isoprostane levels (95% CI: 0.10%, 20.18%) per interquartile range increase in PFOS. In contrast, PFUA was negatively associated [9.32% (95% CI: -17.68%, -0.11%)], while there were suggestive positive associations for MPAH and PFOA with 8-isoprostane. The associations of several PFAS with 8-OHdG varied by fetal sex, showing generally positive trends in women who delivered females, but negative or null in those who delivered males. No significant effect modification by maternal race was observed.

CONCLUSIONS: This study provides evidence linking PFAS exposure to OS during pregnancy, with potential sex-specific effects of certain PFAS on 8-OHdG. Further research should explore additional OS/inflammatory biomarkers and assess the modifying effects of dietary and behavioral patterns across diverse populations.

PMID:38768789 | DOI:10.1016/j.chemosphere.2024.142363