Title: Childhood exposure to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and neurobehavioral domains in children at age 8 years.
Authors: Vuong, Ann M; Yolton, Kimberly; Xie, Changchun; Dietrich, Kim N; Braun, Joseph M; Webster, Glenys M; Calafat, Antonia M; Lanphear, Bruce P; Chen, Aimin
Published In Neurotoxicol Teratol, (2021 Nov-Dec)
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Toxicological studies have raised concerns regarding the neurotoxic effects of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). However, observational evidence from human studies investigating the association between childhood PFAS and neurobehavior is limited and remains unclear. OBJECTIVES: To examine whether childhood PFAS concentrations are associated with neurobehavior in children at age 8 years and whether child sex modifies this relationship. METHODS: We used data from 208 mother-child dyads in the Health Outcomes and Measures of the Environment (HOME) Study, a prospective pregnancy and birth cohort (Cincinnati, OH, USA). We quantified PFAS in child serum at 3 and 8 years. We assessed neurobehavioral domains using the Behavior Assessment System for Children-2 at 8 years. We used multiple informant models to estimate score changes per ln-increase in repeated PFAS concentrations. RESULTS: Childhood PFAS were not associated with Externalizing or Internalizing Problems at 8 years. However, we noted effect measure modification by sex, with higher scores in Externalizing Problems among males per ln-unit increase in perfluorononanoate (PFNA) at 3 years (β = 4.3 points, 95% CI: 1.0, 7.7) while females had lower scores (β = -2.8 points, 95% CI: -4.7, -1.0). More Internalizing Problems were observed among males per ln-unit increase in concurrent PFNA concentrations (β = 3.7 points, 95% CI: 0.7, 6.8), but not in females (β = -1.7 points, 95% CI: -4.6, 1.2). Childhood PFNA concentrations were associated with lower scores for attention problems and activity of daily living. CONCLUSION: While findings do not consistently support an association between childhood PFAS serum concentrations and neurobehavior, child sex may play a role in this relationship.
PubMed ID: 34438039
MeSH Terms: Alkanesulfonic Acids/toxicity; Birth Cohort; Child; Child, Preschool; Environmental Pollutants/blood*; Female; Fluorocarbons/toxicity*; Humans; Male; Pregnancy; Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects/physiopathology*; Prospective Studies; Sex Factors*