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Perfluoroalkyl substances exposure and risk of polycystic ovarian syndrome related infertility in Chinese women

Wang, Wei, Zhou, Wei, Wu, Shaowei, Liang, Fan, Li, Yan, Zhang, Jun, Cui, Linlin, Feng, Yan, Wang, Yan
Environmental pollution 2019 v.247 pp. 824-831
Chinese people, animal ovaries, blood, body mass index, carboxylic acids, case-control studies, chemical species, confidence interval, educational status, employment, female fertility, household income, humans, industrial applications, liquid chromatography, menarche, models, odds ratio, perfluorocarbons, perfluorooctane sulfonic acid, perfluorooctanoic acid, polycystic ovary syndrome, products and commodities, regression analysis, risk, tandem mass spectrometry, women, China
Perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) are a family of synthetic, fluorinated organic compounds. They have been widely used in industrial applications and consumer products and widespread in the environment, wildlife and human. Experimental and epidemiologic evidence suggested that PFASs are capable of interfering with endocrine processes and have potential reproductive and developmental toxicities. Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), one of the main reasons of female infertility, is a common endocrine disorder in reproductive age women. We performed a case-control study to evaluate associations between PCOS-related infertility and PFASs concentrations in plasma. A total of 180 infertile PCOS-cases and 187 healthy controls were recruited from the Center for Reproductive Medicine of Shandong University. Blood specimens were collected at enrollment and analyzed for ten PFASs using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Multivariable logistic regression procedure was used to estimate odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for each PFAS. Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) were the dominant PFASs in the plasma of participants, with the median concentration of 5.07 ng/mL and 4.05 ng/mL, respectively. The median levels of individual PFAS were not significantly different between PCOS-cases and controls. While adjusted for the potential confounders (age, BMI, household income, education level, employment status, age at menarche, menstrual volume), the plasma concentration of perfluorododecanoic acid (PFDoA), a 12 carbons lengths of perfluorocarboxylic acids, was associated with a significantly increased risk of PCOS-related infertility (medium vs low tertile: OR = 2.36, 95% CI: 1.12, 4.99, P = 0.02; high vs low tertile: OR = 3.04, 95% CI: 1.19, 7.67, P = 0.02), with the P trend 0.01. No significant relationship was observed between PCOS-related infertility and other PFAS analytes in the adjusted model, despite perfluoroundecanoic acid showed a negative association (P trend 0.03). The potential reproductive health effects of PFASs and the underlying mechanisms merit further investigation in the future.