Background: Phthalates are industrial chemicals extensively used as plasticizers in a variety of commercial products. Di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) is one of the most frequently used phthalates. DEHP is readily metabolized to mono-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (MEHP), which is more toxic than its parent compound. There are some animal and in vitro studies suggesting that phthalates can disrupt hypothalamus-pituitary-thyroid axis.
Objective and hypotheses: Our aim was to investigate whether cord blood MEHP/DEHP concentrations were related with maternal or neonatal serum thyroid hormone levels.
Method: A total of 100 newborns and their healthy mothers without any gestational complications were enrolled in the study. Cord blood MEHP and DEHP concentrations at delivery were measured by high pressure liquid chromatography method. Maternal and neonatal serum fT4, fT3 and TSH levels were measured at postnatal 3-7 days.
Results: Mean cord blood MEHP and DEHP concentrations were 0.21±0.8 ng/ml and 2.8±0.9 ng/ml respectively. There was a negative correlation between cord blood MEHP concentrations and both maternal and neonatal serum TSH levels (r=−0.23, P=0.02 and r=−0.29, P=0.006 respectively). When adjusted for gestational age, cord blood MEHP levels were correlated with maternal fT3 (r=0.33, P=0.002).
Conclusion: These results suggest that prenatal MEHP exposure may potentially disrupt thyroid functions both in mothers and newborns.
01 - 03 Oct 2015
European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology