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Tracking the pathways of human exposure to perfluorocarboxylates
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Applied Environmental Science (ITM).
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Applied Environmental Science (ITM).
2009 (English)In: Environmental Science and Technology, ISSN 0013-936X, E-ISSN 1520-5851, Vol. 43, no 15, 5565-75 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Recent analyses of perfluorooctanoate (PFOA) in human blood sera show that the background-exposed population in industrialized countries worldwide exhibits a narrow concentration range; arithmetic means of published studies range between 2 and 8 microg/L PFOA, with the exception of a few outlier studies. The globally comparable human serum concentrations of PFOA and characteristic dominance of PFOA with respect to other perfluorocarboxylate (PFCA) homologues indicate that exposure pathways of humans differ from those of wildlife, where perfluorononanoate (PFNA) is often the dominant homologue. The observed correlations between perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and PFOA in human serum together with a simultaneous downward time trend of these compounds in human blood sera and blood spots from the year 2000 onward indicate a connection between historical perfluorooctanesulfonyl (POSF) production (phased out by the major manufacturer in 2000-2002) and exposure to both PFOS and PFOA. A comparison of estimated daily intakes to humans based on samples from exposure media (collected post 2000) indicates that food intake is the major contemporary exposure pathway for the background population, whereas drinking water exposure is dominant for populations near sources of contaminated drinking water. A one-compartment pharmacokinetic model used to back-calculate daily intakes from serum levels is shown to provide agreement within a factor of 1.5-5.5 of the daily intakes derived from exposure media, which provides further supporting evidence that dietary exposure is a major ongoing exposure pathway of PFOA to the background population.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. Vol. 43, no 15, 5565-75 p.
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Applied Environmental Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-34630DOI: 10.1021/es900228kISI: 000268480600007PubMedID: 19731646OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-34630DiVA: diva2:285316
Available from: 2010-01-11 Created: 2010-01-11 Last updated: 2017-12-12Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Human exposure to perfluoroalkyl acids
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Human exposure to perfluoroalkyl acids
2011 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Perfluoroalkyl carboxylic acids (PFCAs) and perfluoroalkane sulfonic acids (PFSAs) are persistent organic contaminants which have been globally measured in human serum samples at low μg L-1 concentrations. One hypothesis, the so-called "indirect hypothesis", postulates that exposure to precursor compounds is responsible for the presence of PFCAs and PFSAs in human serum. The main purpose of this thesis was to test an alternative hypothesis that direct intake of PFCAs and PFSAs via the diet is the dominant ongoing pathway of exposure. Exposure modeling results in paper I and II demonstrate that dietary intake is the major exposure pathway of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), while known precursors account for only a few percent of the total exposure. To address the uncertainties related to dietary intake pathways, highly sensitive analytical methods for a range of PFCAs and PFSAs are developed, validated and applied in paper III and IV. By the development of a novel analytical technique in paper III, detection limits in the pg g-1 range are achieved for a wide range of analytes in different food categories. Analysis of a large set of food basket samples from the Swedish market in paper IV shows that the concentrations in many dietary samples are lower than those used to estimate exposure to PFOA and PFOS in paper I and II. However, an updated dietary intake estimate in paper IV supports the conclusion of paper I and II that dietary intake is the major ongoing human exposure pathway for the general population. Pharmacokinetic modeling undertaken in paper II was reevaluated in this thesis and back-calculated daily intakes from serum concentrations of PFOA and PFOS are shown to be in agreement with the estimated dietary intakes from paper IV. However, due to uncertainties and simplifying assumptions in the pharmacokinetic model, it is possible that there are additional pathways of human exposure contributing to human serum levels.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Applied Environmental Science (ITM), Stockholm University, 2011. 46 p.
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Applied Environmental Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-63685 (URN)978-91-7447-391-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
2011-12-02, Nordenskiöldsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 12, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 1: Manuscript. Paper 4: Manuscript.Available from: 2011-11-10 Created: 2011-10-26 Last updated: 2011-10-31Bibliographically approved

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