A prospective study of prepregnancy serum concentrations of perfluorochemicals and the risk of gestational diabetes

Capsule:
We observed in a prospective United States cohort study that higher environmentally relevant serum perfluorooctanoic acid concentrations before pregnancy were significantly associated with a greater risk of gestational diabetes.

Authors:
Cuilin Zhang, M.D., Ph.D., Rajeshwari Sundaram, Ph.D., José Maisog, M.D., M.S., Antonia M. Calafat, Ph.D., Dana Boyd Barr, Ph.D., Germaine M. Buck Louis, Ph.D.

Volume 103, Issue 1, Pages 184-189

Abstract:

Objective:
To examine preconception serum concentrations of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and six other PFCs in relation to gestational diabetes (GDM) risk.

Design:
Prospective cohort with longitudinal follow-up.

Setting:
Not applicable.

Patient(s):
Among 501 women recruited upon discontinuing contraception for the purpose of becoming pregnant, 258 (51%) became pregnant and were eligible for the study, of which 28 (11%) reported having physician-diagnosed GDM during follow-up.

Intervention(s):
None.

Main Outcome Measure(s):
The odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) of GDM associated with each standard deviation (SD) increment of preconception serum PFOA concentration (ng/mL, log-transformed) and six other PFCs were estimated with the use of logistic regression after adjusting for age, prepregnancy body mass index, smoking, and parity conditional on gravidity.

Result(s):
Preconception geometric mean (95% CI) PFOA concentrations (in ng/mL) were higher for women with than without GDM (3.94 [3.15–4.93] vs. 3.07 [2.83–3.12], respectively). Each SD increment in PFOA was associated with a 1.87-fold increased GDM risk (adjusted OR 1.86 [95% CI 1.14–3.02]). A slightly increased risk associated with each SD increment for the six other PFCs was observed as well (all ORs >1.0, range 1.06–1.27), although the associations were not statistically significant.

Conclusion(s):
Our findings suggested that higher environmentally relevant concentrations of PFOA were significantly associated with an increased risk of GDM. If corroborated, these findings may be suggestive of a possible environmental etiology for GDM.

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