Association Between Dioxin and Metabolic Syndrome by Age and Sex in an Endemic Area of Exposure in Taiwan
Some of the effects of dioxins seem to be different between men and women, and exposures starting at an early age seem to have more prominent effects. Therefore, we conducted a study in Taiwan to evaluate the associations between exposure to polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) and metabolic syndrome (MetS) starting at different ages in both sexes.Methods:
We recruited participants from an area where residents were exposed to PCDD/Fs released from a factory and defined serum PCDD/Fs levels ≥20 pg WHO98-TEQDF/g lipid as high dioxin levels. MetS was defined as meeting three of the following criteria: fasting glucose ≥100 mg/dl or under treatment for diabetes, waist circumference ≥90 cm in men or ≥80 cm in women, triglycerides ≥150 mg/dl or under treatment for elevated triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein <40 mg/dl in men or <50 mg/dl in women, and blood pressures ≥130/85 mmHg or under treatment for hypertension.Results:
Of the 2758 participants, 785 patients with MetS were identified, and we observed positive associations between a high dioxin level and MetS. After adjusting for sex, age, and age at starting exposure, we found that a high dioxin level was an independent predictor for MetS (adjusted odds ratio =1.38; 95% confidence interval = 1.11, 1.72). When we stratified the participants by gender, we found that a high dioxin level remained an independent predictor of MetS in men, but not in women, regardless of the age at starting exposure.Conclusions:
Exposure to PCDD/Fs was associated with MetS in men, independent of age and age at starting exposure.