Levels and sources of brominated flame retardants in human hair from urban, e-waste, and rural areas in South China

In the present study, the authors collected and analysed human hair and indoor dust sampled from urban, e-waste, and rural areas in south China. The samples were analysed for brominated flame retardants (BFRs). BFRs concentrations in hair from occupational e-waste recycling workers were higher than those from non-occupational exposed residents in other sampling areas. Polybrominated di-Ph ethers (PBDEs) and decabromodiphenyl ethane (DBDPE) are two major BFRs in hair samples. The PBDE congener profiles in hair from the e-waste area are different from those from urban and rural areas with relatively higher contribution of lower brominated congeners. DBDPE, instead of BDE209, has become the major BFR in non-e-waste recycling areas. Significant correlations were found between hair level and dust level for DBDPE and BTBPE but not for PBDEs. The different PBDE congener profiles between dust and hair may suggest that exogenous exposure to the PBDE adsorbed on dust is not a major source of hair PBDEs. The authors concluded that BFR levels in hair from different areas in South China were detected and endogenous pathway were found to be the major source of hair BFRs.

Authors: Zheng, Jing; Luo, Xiao-Jun; Yuan, Jian-Gang; Wang, Jing; Wang, Yu-Tao; Chen, Shen-Jun; Mai, Bi-Xian; Yang, Zhong-Yi ;Full Source: Environmental Pollution (Oxford, United Kingdom) 2011, 159(12), 3706-3713 (Eng) ;