Persistent organic pollutants as predictors of increased FSH:LH ratio in naturally cycling, reproductive age women

Although several recent studies suggest endocrine disrupting compounds, such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (p,p’, DDE), and hexachlorobenzene (HCB), target different organs and systems in the body, their impact on female reproductive function in humans is not well characterised. In the present study, the authors determine the relationship between several known endocrine disrupting compounds and a marker of ovarian responsivity, the FSH:LH ratio (higher ratio indicates less ovarian responsivity). For this analysis, 169 naturally cycling women between 21 and 38 years of age completed interviews and had their blood drawn on day 3 of their menstrual cycle for analyses of toxicants, gonadal sex hormones (E2 and P4), and gonadotropins (FSH and LH). PCB congeners were classified into five groups based on their environmental persistence, distribution in human tissue, and toxicological action, reflecting the structure, mechanism, and known biological activity of individual PCB congeners. For every unit (ppb) increase in the level of the oestrogenic PCB group, there was a 5-fold greater risk of a FSH:LH ratio ??2, controlling for individual differences in age, percent body fat, cycle day 3 oestradiol levels, parity, alcohol use and cigarette smoking in the past year (exp[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][ß] = 5; p?=??0.01). PCB congeners identified as oestrogenic were analysed individually, and, of the 19 potentially oestrogenic congeners, five were significantly, and positively related to an increased FSH:LH ratio. Four of these congeners are non-persistent, easily volatilise in the environment, and are easily metabolised, and hence, are indicative of very recent or current exposure. p,p’-DDE and HCB were not associated with FSH:LH ratio. The authors find a clinical indicator of ovarian responsivity, FSH:LH ratio, is associated with a specific group of oestrogenic PCBs. These congeners may become airborne when they volatilise from dredged PCB-contaminated soil or from indoor PCB-containing window caulk and sealants in older buildings leading to inhalation exposure. PCB exposure, particularly to non-persistent, estrogenic congeners, may pose an unrecognised threat to female fecundity within the general population.

Authors: Gallo MV, Ravenscroft J, Carpenter DO, Schell LM, Akwesasne Task Force On The Environment. ; Full Source: Environmental Research. 2018 Jul; 164:556-564. doi: 10.1016/j.envres.2018.03.021. Epub 2018 Apr 2.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

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