OBJECTIVE: We evaluated the associations of serum dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) with longitudinally assessed growth measurements among peripubertal Russian boys. METHODS: A total of 499 boys from Chapaevsk, Russia, aged 8 to 9 years were enrolled in the study from 2003 to 2005 and were followed prospectively for 3 years. Blood samples were collected and physical examinations were conducted at entry and repeated at annual study visits. Multivariate mixed-effects regression models for repeated measures were used to examine the associations of serum dioxins and PCBs with longitudinal measurements of BMI, height, and height velocity. RESULTS: Serum dioxin (total 2005 toxic equivalency [TEQ] median: 21.1 pg/g lipid) and PCBs (median sum of PCBs: 250 ng/g lipid) were measured in 468 boys. At study entry and during 3 years of follow-up, >50% of the boys had age-adjusted BMI and height z scores within 1 SD of World Health Organization - standardized mean values for age. Boys in the highest exposure quintile of the sum of dioxin and PCB concentrations and total TEQs had a significant decrease in mean BMI z scores of 0.67 for dioxins and TEQs and 1.04 for PCBs, compared with boys in the lowest exposure quintile. Comparison of the highest versus the lowest quintile revealed that higher serum PCB concentrations were associated with significantly lower height z scores (mean z-score decrease: 0.41) and height velocity (mean decrease: 0.19 cm/year) after 3 years of follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that exposures to dioxins and PCBs are associated with reduced growth during the peripubertal period and may compromise adult body mass, stature, and health.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health