Prenatal exposure to organochlorine compounds and neonatal thyroid stimulating hormone levels

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It has been suggested that prenatal exposure to some organochlorine compounds (OCs) may adversely affect thyroid function and may, therefore, impair neurodevelopment. The main aim of this study was to examine the relationship of cord serum levels of 1,1,1-trichloro-2,2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)ethane (4,4′-DDT), 1,1-dichloro-2,2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)ethylene (4,4′-DDE), β-hexachlorocyclohexane (β-HCH), hexachlorobenzene (HCB), four individual polychlorobiphenyl (PCB) congeners (118, 138, 153, and 180), and their sum, with neonatal thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) levels in blood samples in a mother-infant cohort in Valencia, Spain. This study included 453 infants born between 2004 and 2006. We measured OC concentrations in umbilical cord serum and TSH in blood of newborns shortly after birth. Associations between neonatal TSH levels and prenatal OC exposure adjusted for covariates were assessed using multivariate linear regression analyses. Neonatal TSH levels tended to be higher in newborns with β-HCH levels in umbilical cord above 90th percentile (104 ng/g lipid) than in those with levels below the median (34 ng/g lipid), with an adjusted increment in neonatal TSH levels of 21% (95% con.dence interval=•3, 51; P=0.09). No statistically signi.cant association was found between the remaining OCs and TSH at birth. Prenatal exposure to β-HCH may affect neonatal thyroid hormone status and its function in neurological development.

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