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Urinary metabolites of organophosphate flame retardants in 0–5-year-old children: Potential exposure risk for inpatients and home-stay infants

Zhang, Bo, Lu, Shaoyou, Huang, Mingzhi, Zhou, Meizhou, Zhou, Ziqing, Zheng, Hangcong, Jiang, Yongchen, Bai, Xueyuan, Zhang, Tao
Environmental pollution 2018 v.243 pp. 318-325
Chinese people, average daily intake, biphenyl, children, drinking water, dust, flame retardants, humans, infants, liver microsomes, metabolites, organophosphorus compounds, patients, phosphates, risk, urine, China
Organophosphate flame retardants (OPFRs) have been commonly observed in indoor dust, food, and drinking water in China, but little is known about their exposure levels or factors leading to exposure in Chinese children. In this study, we measured eight metabolites of OPFRs (mOPFRs) in 227 urine samples collected from 0- to 5-year-old children in China. The high detection rates of mOPFRs (60%–100%) in the collected urine samples demonstrated the widespread exposure of this population to OPFRs. The median concentrations indicated that bis(2-chloroethyl)phosphate (BCEP, 0.85 ng/mL) and diphenyl phosphate (DPHP, 0.27 ng/mL) were the dominant chlorinated mOPFRs and nonchlorinated mOPFRs, respectively. Interestingly, the median urinary levels of bis(1-chloro-2-propyl)phosphate (BCIPP, 6.48 ng/mL) and bis(2-butoxyethyl)phosphate (BBOEP, 0.31 ng/mL) in inpatient infants were one order of magnitude higher (p < 0.01) than those observed in outpatient infants. For home-stay participants, furthermore, infants (0–1 year) had the highest median levels of BCIPP (0.72 ng/mL) and dibutyl phosphate (DBP, 0.14 ng/mL) among the three age groups (i.e., 0–1, >1–3, and >3–5 years), and significantly (p < 0.05) negative age-related relationships were found for both urinary mOPFRs. Two set of data on estimated daily intakes (EDIs) were calculated based on the fraction of OPFR excreted as the corresponding mOPFR (FUE) in human liver microsomes (EDIHLM) and S9 fraction (EDIS9) system, respectively. In general, children have relatively high EDIs of tris(2-chloroethyl)phosphate (TCEP: EDIHLM = 485 ng/kg bw/day, EDIS9 = 261 ng/kg bw/day). Furthermore, 17% or 21% of inpatient infants had EDIs that exceeded the reference dose, whereas this value was reduced to 13% in outpatient infants; and this value decreased with age among all home-stay children (0–5 years). Our results indicated that inpatient and home-stay infants had a higher potential risk of OPFR exposure. To our knowledge, this is the first study to identify the elevated urinary levels of mOPFRs in inpatients.