Superfund Research Program
Environmental Determinants of Neural Tube Defect Risk
Project Leader: Laura E. Mitchell
Grant Number: P42ES004917
Funding Period: 2005-2008
- Project Summary
Final Progress Reports
The focus of this project is on the association between maternal exposures to two environmental contaminants: polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and inorganic arsenic (Asi), and the risk for congenital malformations of the neural tube in offspring. Fieldwork for this study is conducted in northern China in a population that is characterized by a high frequency of the exposures of interest and a high birth prevalence of neural tube defects (NTDs). Due to problems with the subcontractor originally responsible for the fieldwork in China, a new subcontract (Dr. Ting Zhang, Capitol Institute of Pediatrics, Beijing) has been established. Approval of the fieldwork and data collection activities required of the new subcontractor has recently been obtained from the Institutional Review Board (IRB) of Fudan University, and Dr. Mitchell is now working to finalize approval of all activities in China with NIH/NIEHS and the IRB at Texas A&M University. It is anticipated that the new subcontractor will initiate subject recruitment early in 2008. Data provided by the original subcontractor include information (interview data and biological samples) on approximately 200 cases and 300 controls. Analyses based on these interview data, and genotypes and biomarkers of exposure (e.g. DNA adducts, as an indicator of PAH exposure) derived from the biological samples are ongoing.