Does exposure to phthalates influence thyroid function and growth hormone homeostasis? The Taiwan Environmental Survey for Toxicants (TEST) 2013

Han Bin Huang, Wen Harn Pan, Jung Wei Chang, Hung Che Chiang, Yue Leon Guo, Jouni J.K. Jaakkola, Po Chin Huang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background Previous epidemiologic and toxicological studies provide some inconsistent evidence that exposure to phthalates may affect thyroid function and growth hormone homeostasis. Objective To assess the relations between exposure to phthalates and indicators of thyroid function and growth hormone homeostasis disturbances both among adults and minors. Methods We conducted a population-based cross-sectional study of 279 Taiwanese adults (≥18 years old) and 79 minors (<18 years old) in 2013. Exposure assessment was based on urinary biomarkers, 11 phthalate metabolites measured by using online liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry. Indicators of thyroid function included serum levels of thyroxine (T4), free T4, triiodothyronine, thyroid-stimulating hormone, and thyroxine-binding globulin (TBG). Growth hormone homeostasis was measured as the serum levels of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) and insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3 (IGFBP3). We applied multivariate linear regression models to examine these associations after adjusting for covariates. Results Among adults, serum T4 levels were negatively associated with urinary mono-(2-ethyl-5-hydroxyhexyl) phthalate (β=−0.028, P=0.043) and the sum of urinary di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) metabolite (β=−0.045, P=0.017) levels. Free T4 levels were negatively associated with urinary mono-ethylhexyl phthalate (MEHP) (β=−0.013, P=0.042) and mono-(2-ethyl-5-oxohexyl) phthalate (β=−0.030, P=0.003) levels, but positively associated with urinary monoethyl phthalate (β=0.014, P=0.037) after adjustment for age, BMI, gender, urinary creatinine levels, and TBG levels. Postive associations between urinary MEHP levels and IGF-1 levels (β=0.033, P=0.006) were observed. Among minors, free T4 was positively associated with urinary mono benzyl phthalate levels (β=0.044, P=0.001), and IGF-1 levels were negatively associated with the sum of urinary DEHP metabolite levels (β=−0.166, P=0.041) after adjustment for significant covariance and IGFBP3. Conclusions Our results are consistent with the hypothesis that exposure to phthalates influences thyroid function and growth hormone homeostasis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-72
Number of pages10
JournalEnvironmental Research
Volume153
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2017

Keywords

  • Biomonitoring
  • Growth hormone
  • Phthalate metabolites
  • Taiwanese
  • Thyroid hormones

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