Online Program

Length of Residence and Polyfluorochemical (PFC) Concentrations among Foreign-born United States Residents

Monday, November 2, 2015

Reynolds Morrison, MPH, Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA
Solomon I. Okosun, PhD, Institute of Public Health, College of Health and Human Sciences, Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA
Background: Polyfluorochemicals (PFCs) are widely used industrial compounds that tend to bioaccumulate in humans and may be associated with adverse health effects including disruption of lipid and weight regulation.  To the best of our knowledge, no studies have examined the associations between length of US residence and PFC concentrations among foreign-born residents.

Objectives: We investigated the relationship between length of residence and serum concentrations of selected PFCs (perfluorooctanoic acid, PFOA; perfluoroctane sulfonic acid, PFOS; perfluorohexane sufonic acid, PFHxS; and perfluorononanoic acid, PFNA) among foreign-born US residents.

Methods: We analyzed a sample of 1485 individuals using data from the 2007-2012 waves of US National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey (NHANES). Participants were at least 20 years old and had serum measurements for the selected PFCs. Multiple regression was used to calculate the least square geometric means (LSGM) of the log-transformed PFC concentrations by length of residence, controlling for gender, race, age, educational level and smoking status.

Results: Adjusted LSGM concentrations (ng/mL) of  PFOS and PFHxS were significantly higher among individuals who had been resident for 20+ years when compared to those who had been resident for <10 years: PFOS [(10.04, 95% CI=8.85–11.39) vs. (7.19, 95% CI=6.08–8.51)]; PFHxS [1.56, 95% CI=1.36–1.78) vs. (0.91, 95% CI=0.80–1.03)]. Adjusted LSGM concentrations of PFHxS among those resident for 10– <20 years were significantly higher than among those resident for <10 years: [1.22, 95% CI=1.07–1.39) vs. (0.91, 95% CI=0.80–1.03)]. There were no significant differences in PFOA and PFNA concentrations by length of residence.

Conclusion: The results suggest that levels of some PFCs tend to increase among U.S. residents dependent on number of years of residence. New residents in the U.S. present a unique population among which biomonitoring studies can be carried out to determine relationships between PFC exposure and adverse outcomes.

Learning Areas:

Environmental health sciences
Public health biology
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Describe the relationship between length of residence and concentrations of environmental chemicals. Discuss factors that impact environmental chemical concentrations in humans. Formulate innovative strategies to examine the relationships between environmental chemical exposure and adverse disease outcomes

Keyword(s): Chemical Exposures & Prevention, Environmental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I a graduate student with a research focus on the associations between environmental chemical exposures and chronic disease. My research interests include examining associations between polyfluorochemicals (PFCs) and asthma, insulin resistance and obesity.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.