IJERPH, Vol. 16, Pages 2178: Polychlorinated Dibenzo-p-Dioxins, Polychlorinated Dibenzofurans, and Dioxin-Like Polychlorinated Biphenyls in Umbilical Cord Serum from Pregnant Women Living Near a Chemical Plant in Tianjin, China (International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health)
Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), and dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (dl-PCBs) are bioaccumulative compounds that may affect fetal growth and infant development. The aim of this study was to determine whether the pregnant women living near a chemical plant in Tianjin had a risk of exposure to dioxins. Concentrations of PCDD/Fs and dl-PCBs in 24 umbilical cord serum samples collected from pregnant women were measured using a high-resolution gas chromatograph with a high-resolution mass spectrometer (HRGC-HRMS) and an isotopic dilution method. The levels of ∑(PCDD/Fs + dl-PCBs) were in the range 476–8307 pg·g−1 lipid, with a mean of 3037 pg·g−1. The mean World Health Organization toxicity equivalent (WHO-TEQ) for PCDD/Fs and dl-PCBs was 14.0 and 2.14 pg·g−1 lipid, respectively. The PCDD/Fs and dl-PCBs contributed 86.7% and 13.3%, respectively, to the total TEQ. The octa-CDFs and penta-CBs were predominant for the PCDD/Fs and dl-PCBs, accounting for 57.6% and 74.3%, respectively. Several PCDD/F and dl-PCB congeners were highly correlated, such as PCB 105 and PCB 118 (r = 0.982, p < 0.001). Although the results hint at decreasing trends for PCDD/F and dl-PCBs by comparison with a similar study in Tianjin, a total TEQ of 41.7% of study participants had a body burden that exceeded the biomonitoring equivalents for dioxins. It was shown that pregnant women and infants had a health risk of exposure to dioxins.