Article

Consumption of organic meat does not diminish the carcinogenic potential associated with the intake of persistent organic pollutants (POPs)

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Abstract

Numerous studies have shown an epidemiological link between meat consumption and the incidence of cancer, and it has been suggested that this relationship may be motivated by the presence of carcinogenic contaminants on it. Among the most frequently detected contaminants in meat are several types of persistent organic pollutants (POPs), and it is well known that many of them are carcinogenic. On the other hand, an increasing number of consumers choose to feed on what are perceived as healthier foods. Thus, the number of consumers of organic food is growing. However, environmental contamination by POPs is ubiquitous, and it is therefore unlikely that the practices of organic food production are able to prevent this contamination. To test this hypothesis, we acquired 76 samples of meat (beef, chicken, and lamb) of two modes of production (organic and conventional) and quantified their levels of 33 carcinogenic POPs. On this basis, we determined the human meat-related daily dietary exposure to these carcinogens using as a model a population with a high consumption of meat, such as the Spanish population. The maximum allowable meat consumption for this population and the carcinogenic risk quotients associated with the current pattern of consumption were calculated. As expected, no sample was completely free of carcinogenic contaminants, and the differences between organically and conventionally produced meats were minimal. According to these results, the current pattern of meat consumption exceeded the maximum limits, which are set according to the levels of contaminations, and this is associated with a relevant carcinogenic risk. Strikingly, the consumption of organically produced meat does not diminish this carcinogenic risk, but on the contrary, it seems to be even higher, especially that associated with lamb consumption.

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... The daily intake of contaminants needs to be calculated on the basis of the typical food basket consumed in the country obtained from surveys on consumers. The dietary exposure to a wide range of persistent organic and inorganic pollutants of Spanish consumers has been investigated by several authors in the past years for different food groups, such as milk and cheese (Almeida-González et al., 2012;Luzardo et al., 2012), eggs , yogurt (Rodríguez-Hernández et al., 2015c), meat and processed meat (Rodríguez-Hernández et al., 2015a;Rodríguez-Hernández et al., 2015b), and seafood Domingo and Bocio, 2007;Falcó et al., 2006). Also several basket market studies have been performed in Spain including the major food groups Falco et al., 2003;Llobet et al., 2003a;Llobet et al., 2003b;Llobet et al., 2003c), and even the consumption of foods of animal origin has been investigated as a determinant of contamination by OCPs and PCBs . ...
... Also several basket market studies have been performed in Spain including the major food groups Falco et al., 2003;Llobet et al., 2003a;Llobet et al., 2003b;Llobet et al., 2003c), and even the consumption of foods of animal origin has been investigated as a determinant of contamination by OCPs and PCBs . However, to date only few studies have estimated the carcinogenic risk associated to the exposure to contaminants associated to certain food groups in the Spanish population (Rodríguez-Hernández et al., 2015a;Rodríguez-Hernández et al., 2015b), and to our knowledge none has been developed for the seafood group. ...
... Thus, in the present study, the carcinogenic effects of multiple contaminants were evaluated using the methodology previously used for different food groups (Rodríguez-Hernández et al., 2015a;Rodríguez-Hernández et al., 2015b;Yu et al., 2014), according to the following formulas: ...
Article
In this work we have evaluated the potential carcinogenic and acutely toxic risks associated to the exposure to highly prevalent organic and inorganic contaminants through the consumption of fishery products by the Spanish population. The concentrations of 8 organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), 18 polychlorinated biphenils (PCBs), 7 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (expressed as benzo[a]pyrene toxic equivalents (B[a]Peq)), and three inorganic toxic elements [arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), and mercury (Hg)] were determined in 93 samples of the most consumed species of white fish, blue fish, cephalopods and seafood species, which were acquired directly in markets and supermarkets in the Canary Islands, Spain. The chemical concentration data were combined with the pattern of consumption of these foodstuffs in order to calculate the daily intake of these contaminants, and on this basis the risk quotients for carcinogenicity and acute toxicity were determined for Spanish adults and children. Our results showed that the daily intake of OCPs, PCBs and B[a]Peq, which is associated to blue fish consumption was the highest within the fish group. The estimated intake of pollutants can be considered low or very low for the individual contaminants, when compared to reference values, except in the case of HCB and As. All the estimated intakes were below the reported Tolerable Daily Intakes. Considering the additive effects of multiple contaminants, the risk of acute toxic effects can also be considered as low or very low. However, our results reflect that the current consumption of white fish in adults and children, and also the blue fish in the case of adults, poses a moderate carcinogenic risk to Spanish consumers, mainly related to their concentrations of As. The conclusions of this research may be useful for the design of appropriate risk communication campaigns.
... The serum concentrations of PBDEs were also measured in serum of 22 pet cats and cat owners from Gran Canaria (Spain) (Henríquez- Hernández et al. 2017). In this study, the mean PBDE concentrations were found as 5.48 and 1.62 ng/g lw in cats and humans, respectively, and the correlation of concentrations and the pattern of contamination (congener distribution and proportions) between both species were reported to be significant. ...
... Finally, the potential role of pet cats as sentinels for human exposure to organophosphorus flame retardants (PFRs) was evaluated for the first time in cat serum from Gran Canaria (Canary Islands, Spain) (Henríquez- Hernández et al. 2017). PFRs are currently considered as more environmentally friendly and safer than the BFRs and are being increasingly employed in consumer products. ...
... PFRs are currently considered as more environmentally friendly and safer than the BFRs and are being increasingly employed in consumer products. Although PFRs have been present in industrial formulations since 40 years ago, information about their environmental fate or their effects in humans and biota is however still scarce (Henríquez- Hernández et al. 2017). In this study, a total of 11 compounds were measured in the serum of 22 pet cats and 20 humans. ...
Book
This book provides an up-to-date overview of the current knowledge and research concerning domestic pets as sentinels, forecasters and promoters of human health. Written by leading specialists in the fields of medicine, veterinary, environment, analytical chemistry, sociology and behavioral science, this volume provides a comprehensive understanding of the capabilities of pets in what regards to human health. The first seven chapters are devoted to the use of pets as sentinels for their human companions, in terms of exposure to different classes of environmental chemicals. The following five chapters address the use of pets as models for human diseases and promoters of human health. The final two chapters highlight the psycho-social and psychophysiological aspects of human-animal interactions. The book offers an integrated approach to the One Health concept, providing, in a truly holistic manner, tools to assess the equilibrium between the environment, men and animals. This exercise will highlight and reshape our position towards the planet that despite being “a microscopic dot on a microscopic dot lost in the unimaginable infinity of the Universe” is still our own. At the end of the day, pets will always be there to help us.
... The samples were purified using calcium chloride, silica, and alumina (Sigma-Aldrich, St. Louis, MO, USA). For the identification and quantification of PCBs, a mixture of 39 authenticated standards was used, corresponding to the following congeners: 1, 2, 3,4,5,7,9,16,18,19,22,25,28,44,52,56,66,67,71,74,82,87,99,110,138,146,147,153,173,174,177,179,180,187,194,195,199,203, and 206 (AccuStandard, New Haven, CT, USA). For the identification and quantification of PBDEs, a mixture of 39 authenticated standards was used corresponding to the following congeners: 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 10, 11, 12, 13, 15, 17, 21, 28, 30, 32, 33, 35, 37, 47, 49, 66, 71, 75, 77, 85, 99, 100, 116, 118, 119, 126, 137, 153, 154, 155, 166, 182, 183, and 190 (AccuStandard, New Haven, CT, USA). ...
... The samples were purified using calcium chloride, silica, and alumina (Sigma-Aldrich, St. Louis, MO, USA). For the identification and quantification of PCBs, a mixture of 39 authenticated standards was used, corresponding to the following congeners: 1, 2, 3,4,5,7,9,16,18,19,22,25,28,44,52,56,66,67,71,74,82,87,99,110,138,146,147,153,173,174,177,179,180,187,194,195,199,203, and 206 (AccuStandard, New Haven, CT, USA). For the identification and quantification of PBDEs, a mixture of 39 authenticated standards was used corresponding to the following congeners: 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 10, 11, 12, 13, 15, 17, 21, 28, 30, 32, 33, 35, 37, 47, 49, 66, 71, 75, 77, 85, 99, 100, 116, 118, 119, 126, 137, 153, 154, 155, 166, 182, 183, and 190 ...
... ng/g dw) [7] in Jalisco. By comparing the concentrations of PCBs in sediments, we found that, with water bodies elsewhere in the world, they were low compared to San Diego Bay, California (23-1387 ng/g dw) [25], the Pearl River Estuary in China (17.68-169.26 ng/g dw) [26], and coastal Bangladesh (32.17-199.4 ...
Article
Lake Chapala is the largest natural freshwater reservoir in Mexico and the third largest lake in Latin America. Lakes are often considered the final deposit of polluting materials; they can be concentrated in the organisms that inhabit them, the water, and the sediments. The PCBs and PBDEs are environmental pollutants highly studied for their known carcinogenic and mutagenic effects. PCB and PBDE bioaccumulation levels were determined in Chirostoma spp., Cyprinus carpio, and Oreochromis aureus. In addition, we monitored the concentrations of PCBs and PBDEs in sediment and water from Lake Chapala were monitored. Samples were collected during two periods, in October 2018 and May 2019. The samples were analyzed by gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry. Two bioaccumulation factors were determined in fish, one in relation to the concentration of PCBs and PBDEs in sediments and the other in relation to the concentration of PCBs and PBDEs in water. The PCB levels were 0.55–3.29 ng/g dry weight (dw) in sediments, 1.43–2.98 ng/mL in water, 0.30–5.31 ng/g dw in Chirostoma spp., 1.06–6.07 ng/g dw in Cyprinus carpio, and 0.55–7.20 ng/g dw in Oreochromis aureus. The levels of PBDEs were 0.17–0.35 ng/g dw in sediments, 0.13–0.32 ng/mL in water, 0.01–0.23 ng/g dw in Chirostoma spp., 0–0.31 ng/g dw in Cyprinus carpio, and 0.1–0.22 ng/g dw in Oreochromis aureus. This study provides information for a better understanding of the movement, global distribution, and bioaccumulation of PCBs and PBDEs. The results show that the fish, water, and sediments of Lake Chapala are potential risks to the biota and the local human population.
... Due to their ubiquitous distribution mostly in urbanized and industrialized zones, and in parallel to toxic metals, their presence in food seems to be independent of the production system [45,145]. In 2012, the EFSA published the results of a large monitoring study in which 13,797 food [146]. ...
... Taking into account the adverse effects of DL-PCBs, this is a major concern for public health and further studies were suggested in order to clarify the origin of this contamination [143]. In a more recent study carried out in 2014 [145], 76 organic and conventional meat samples (lamb, chicken and beef) were analyzed for 33 carcinogenic POPs. Some significant differences in the levels of pollutants between organic and conventional production were found, but were they of minor importance and none of the samples exceeded the MRLs for the 19 contaminants detected. ...
... However, the study went even further and estimated the daily intake of the present contaminants taking a high meat consuming population as a model, and reported a similar exposure to contaminants from both organic and conventional meats. Moreover, the evaluation of carcinogenic risks demonstrated a relevant risk in the samples of both organic and conventional meat, which may serve as an alert to strengthen the efforts to minimize the presence of these environmental toxins [145]. From the available scientific information, it is possible to note that organic production cannot protect consumers from a large number of environmentally transmitted contaminants due to their ubiquity and both organic and conventional systems are equally sensitive. ...
Article
The aim of this review is to provide a critical overview of the current knowledge of the differences between organic and conventional production regarding food safety. In general, it would appear that, microbiological safety and contaminants from environmental and natural sources are greatly influenced by other factors rather than or totally independent of the production system per se. Claims that organic food is safer than conventional food have not yet been supported by definitive scientific research and, therefore, it can be concluded that the premium price of organic food may only be justifiable by factors other than food safety.
... Literature was reviewed to determine if organic food contained lower levels of pollutants than non-organic food, as well as to determine if individuals who consumed organic diets had lower levels of pollutants in their bodies. Hernández et al. (2015) studied organic and conventional meat from a European meat supplier. All 76 samples of meat that were analyzed contained some form of contaminant (Hernández et al. 2015). ...
... Hernández et al. (2015) studied organic and conventional meat from a European meat supplier. All 76 samples of meat that were analyzed contained some form of contaminant (Hernández et al. 2015). Surprisingly, in some instances, the organic meat samples had higher pollutant levels than conventional meat samples. ...
... For example, the mean total DDT concentration from conventional lamb samples was found to be 196 ng/g w.w., while organic lamb samples had more than twice that amount, with a mean concentration of 436.9 ng/g w.w. (Hernández et al. 2015). The same finding was found for marker PCBs, with organic chicken and lamb samples showing higher mean concentrations than conventional chicken and lamb samples (Hernández et al. 2015). ...
Article
Full-text available
The incidence rate of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) is currently increasing within Canada as well as worldwide. Environmental pollutants are ubiquitous in the environment and can potentially increase an individual’s risk of developing NHL. The goal of this literature review was to identify environmental pollutants associated with diagnosis of NHL and summarize their current levels in human populations. Sixteen environmental pollutants were identified as having associations with NHL diagnosis, including dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), pentachlorophenol (PCP), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), carbon tetrachloride, and various pesticides. PCB levels in human breast milk were highest in developed countries, while DDT levels were highest in malaria-endemic countries. 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid and glyphosate levels were highest in individuals who were occupationally exposed to these chemicals. Humans are mainly exposed to the identified pollutants through food. PCBs were found within animal products such as milk and cheese, and a variety of pesticides were found in various fruits and vegetables. Individuals who followed vegan and vegetarian diets had lower levels of non-pesticide pollutants in their body due to limited consumption of animal products but had higher pesticide levels due to increased consumption of fruits and vegetables. However, organic diets proved to mitigate this issue. Further research needs to be conducted on a wider variety of pollutants to gain a comprehensive understanding of the effects of these pollutants in association with NHL.
... Dietary exposure is the main route for PCB/BDE accumulation in the human body. For PCBs, there are 209 possible congeners and analysis is usually focused on toxic PCBs including dioxin-like PCBs (PCB- 77, 81, 105, 114, 118, 123, 126, 156, 157, 167, 169, and 189) and indicator PCBs (PCB- 28, 52, 101, 138, 153 and 180) [20,45,[88][89][90]. For PBDEs, the most detected congeners in foodstuffs include 16 PBDEs (BDE- 28, 47, 49, 53, 66, 85, 99, 100, 153, 154, 183, 196, 206, 207, 208 and 209) [45,91,92]. ...
... Mutagenicity and carcinogenicity, DNA damage, oxidative stress, impaired male fertility, respiratory diseases, cognitive dysfunction among children and cancer (breast cancer) [11,28,71,88] OCPs Neurological symptoms, endocrine disruption, infertility and fetal malformation, diabetes, cancer (breast cancer, testicular, prostate and kidney cancer), reproductive problems, cardiovascular problems, high blood pressure, glucose intolerance and obesity [11,28,40,127,128] Dioxins/furans Language delay, disturbances in mental and motor development, cancer, diabetes, endocrine disruption, high blood pressure, glucose intolerance and cardiovascular problems [11,28,129] PCBs Endocrine disruption, neurological disorders, liver injury, diabetes, cancer (breast, prostate, testicular, kidney, ovarian and uterine cancers), cardiovascular problems and obesity [11,28,129] PBDE Reproductive problems, cancer(testicular), diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular problems [11] PFOS and PFOA Breast cancer [11] HBCD Endocrine disruption, reproductive problems and behavioral effects [130] PCN Cancers [28] PCDE Cancers [28] ...
... Better sensitivity but the selected ion window may need to be monitored [32,171] High-resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS) High sensitivity but expensive [14,18,59] MS/MS Improves sensitivity and selectivity compared to single quadrupole MS, e.g., ion trap MS/MS; triple quadrupole MS/MS [14,88,107,164,172] Time-of-flight TOF-MS Wide mass analysis range but poor instrument limits of detection [14,47] ...
Article
Full-text available
Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) present in foods have been a major concern for food safety due to their persistence and toxic effects. To ensure food safety and protect human health from POPs, it is critical to achieve a better understanding of POP pathways into food and develop strategies to reduce human exposure. POPs could present in food in the raw stages, transferred from the environment or artificially introduced during food preparation steps. Exposure to these pollutants may cause various health problems such as endocrine disruption, cardiovascular diseases, cancers, diabetes, birth defects, and dysfunctional immune and reproductive systems. This review describes potential sources of POP food contamination, analytical approaches to measure POP levels in food and efforts to control food contamination with POPs.
... et al., 2014;Squadrone et al., 2014;Sun et al., 2014) take part in the human intake of POPs. Other potential human sources of POPs could be meat (Hernández et al., 2015) and vegetables (Khan and Cao, 2011), while POPs can be transferred through maternal milk to the infant (Croes et al., 2012;Chen et al., 2015) exposing it to detectable amounts of POPs in the very early stages of life. Infant exposure to such chemicals, either prenatal or postnatal, has been associated with several health issues ranging from growth (Iszatt et al., 2015) and obesity (Tang-Péronard et al., 2014;Vafeiadi et al., 2015) disorders to high blood pressure (Vafeiadi et al., 2015), and effects on the development of nervous (Berghuis et al., 2015), immune, and respiratory (Gascon et al., 2013) systems. ...
... In addition to infant population, POPs cause several adverse health effects in adults. Exposure to POPs has been mainly associated with carcinogenesis (Boada et al., 2012;Hernández et al., 2015;Lim et al., 2015;Mitro et al., 2016) and metabolic diseases (Ruzzin, 2012; such as obesity (Dirinck et al., 2010;Lee et al., 2012;Reaves et al., 2015) and type two diabetes (Jaacks and Staimez, 2015;Ngwa et al., 2015), while numerous links with negative health consequences have also been reported (Crinnion, 2011;Lind et al., 2012;Kvist et al., 2014;Vested et al., 2014;Arrebola et al., 2015;Grindler et al., 2015). ...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of the present review is to highlight the potential use of marine biocatalysts (whole cells or enzymes) as an alternative bioprocess for the degradation of aromatic pollutants. Firstly, information about the characteristics of the still underexplored marine environment and the available scientific tools used to access novel marine-derived biocatalysts is provided. Marine-derived enzymes, such as dioxygenases and dehalogenases, and the involved catalytic mechanisms for the degradation of aromatic and halogenated compounds, are presented, with the purpose of underpinning their potential use in bioremediation. Emphasis is given on persistent organic pollutants (POPs) that are organic compounds with significant impact on health and environment due to their resistance in degradation. POPs bioaccumulate mainly in the fatty tissue of living organisms, therefore current efforts are mostly focused on the restriction of their use and production, since their removal is still unclear. A brief description of the guidelines and criteria that render a pollutant POP is given, as well as their potential biodegradation by marine microorganisms by surveying recent developments in this rather unexplored field.
... As an example, the link between meat consumption and cancer incidence may be, in part, due to the presence of carcinogenic contaminants on or in it. A study of meat (beef, chicken, and lamb), which tested for 33 carcinogenic pollutants [14], revealed that "no meat sample was completely free of carcinogenic contaminants and the differences between organically and conventionally produced meats were minimal." Because environmental contamination by POPs is ubiquitous, organic food production practices are unable to prevent contamination. ...
... Strikingly, the consumption of organically produced meat does not diminish this carcinogenic risk, but on the contrary, it seems to be even higher, especially that associated with lamb consumption." [14] Endocrine-disrupting chemicals have been linked to the rising incidence and prevalence of multiple diseases over the 1 "Persistent organic pollutant-persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are organic compounds that are resistant to environmental degradation through chemical, biological, and photolytic processes. Many POPs are currently or formerly used as pesticides, solvents, pharmaceuticals, and industrial chemicals. ...
Article
Full-text available
The purpose of this review is to provide an understanding of the links between pollution and human health, pollution and planetary health, and planetary health and human health from the perspective of the anthropogenic activities that have had the most significant impact on these relationships including food pollution, transportation, and electricity production-related pollution, consumerism-related pollution, and agriculture-related pollution. The literature tells us that most pollution is being driven by anthropogenic activities used to sustain our species, our economies, and our consumption-based lifestyles. These activities and their subsequent pollution are driving at least eight of the nine planetary boundaries and are having profound impacts on both human and planetary health to the peril of the survival of many species including our own. Given that the two core planetary boundaries, climate change and biodiversity loss, have been crossed, and that the IPCC 2018 report calls for emissions reductions of 45% from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching net zero around 2050 to limit global warming to 1.5 °C, it would seem that avoiding catastrophe and meeting the basic needs of the global populace will require nothing less than a rapid reduction of fossil hydrocarbon use in addition to a drastic reduction in ruminant meat consumption. Further research is needed, however, the urgency of the current planetary state requires action and, therefore, applied and outcomes research of initiatives that address these issues.
... As an example, the link between meat consumption and cancer incidence may be, in part, due to the presence of carcinogenic contaminants on or in it. A study of meat (beef, chicken, and lamb), which tested for 33 carcinogenic pollutants [14], revealed that "no meat sample was completely free of carcinogenic contaminants and the differences between organically and conventionally produced meats were minimal." Because environmental contamination by POPs is ubiquitous, organic food production practices are unable to prevent contamination. ...
... Strikingly, the consumption of organically produced meat does not diminish this carcinogenic risk, but on the contrary, it seems to be even higher, especially that associated with lamb consumption." [14] Endocrine-disrupting chemicals have been linked to the rising incidence and prevalence of multiple diseases over the 1 "Persistent organic pollutant-persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are organic compounds that are resistant to environmental degradation through chemical, biological, and photolytic processes. Many POPs are currently or formerly used as pesticides, solvents, pharmaceuticals, and industrial chemicals. ...
Article
Full-text available
Global environmental degradation and climate change threaten the foundation of human health and well-being. In a confluence of crises, the accelerating pace of climate change and other environmental disruptions pose an additional, preventable danger to a global population that is both aging and carrying a growing burden of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). Climate change and environmental disruption function as “threat multipliers,” especially for those with NCDs, worsening the potential health impacts on those with suboptimal health. At the same time, these environmental factors threaten the basic pillars of health and prevention, increasing the risk of developing chronic disease. In the face of these threats, the core competencies of lifestyle medicine (LM) present crucial opportunities to mitigate climate change and human health impacts while also allowing individuals and communities to build resilience. LM health professionals are uniquely positioned to coach patients toward climate-healthy behavior changes that heal both people and the planet.
... The HPLC coupled with high-resolution MS analysis detected several pesticides (e.g., bendiocarb, 199 μgkg −1 ; chlorpyrifos 43 μg kg −1 ; amitraz 11 μg kg −1 ) in organically grown carrots (Chiarello and Moura, 2018). There was no significant difference in the concentration of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) of carcinogenic nature (7 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), 18 polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and 8 organochlorine pesticides) between organic and conventional meat (e.g., beef, chicken, and lamb) (Hernández et al., 2017), implying no minimization of carcinogenic risk by organic meat consumption. The median concentrations of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDD), dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (DL-PCB), non-dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (NDL-PCB) and hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD) in the conventional bovine meat were 0.22 pg g −1 , 0.30 pg g −1 , 1.83 ng g −1 and 0.03 ng g −1 , respectively, while their levels in the organic bovine meat were 0.28 pg g −1 , 0.64 pg g −1 , 2.75 ng g −1 and 0.04 ng g −1 , respectively . ...
Article
Organic farming for higher ecological and human health benefits has been adopted in about 186 countries, covering a total area of 71.5 Mha worldwide. Because of the associated practices, the flows of several environmental pollutants into the organic products threaten food safety and human health. The contaminants that occur at higher concentrations in organic produce include persistent organic pollutants (61.3-436.9 ng/g lamb meat, and 0.28 pg/g-2.75 ng/g bovine meat), heavy metals (0.5-33.0 mg/kg lettuce), organochlorine pesticides (11-199 μg/g carrots), cyclodienes, hexachlorocyclohexanes, hexabromocyclododecane (2-3 times higher than in conventionally produced porcine meat), hexachlorobenzene (1.38-14.49 ng/g fat in milk), and non-brominated flame retardants (1.3-3.2 times higher than in conventional produce of greenhouse-grown tomato and cucumber). Moreover, some pollutants like per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances with a longer half-life (1.50-9.10 yrs) are reported to occur in several organic products. In fact, several legacy persistent organic pollutants are known for their significant trophic magnification in an urban terrestrial ecosystem. In addition, many plant functionalities are adversely affected in organic farming. Therefore, the long-term usage of organic products containing such pollutants poses a significant threat to human health. The major limitation in organic livestock production is the severe shortage of organic feed. Several variable standards and technical regulations set by the government and private agencies are the major obstacles in the global marketing of organic products. The present review critically addresses the impact of organic farming on hidden risks due to the use of composts as the amendment resources that enhance the phytoaccumulation and trophic transfer of pollutants, the functional diversity of the ecosystems, and poor harmonization among the policies and regulations in different countries for organic farming. The future directions of research have been suggested to mitigate unintended flows of pollutants into the organic products.
... POPs are of concern due to their contribution to cancer risk (Domingo & Nadal, 2016). When compared with nonorganic meat, organic meat has been found to be an equivalent source of POPs (Hernández et al., 2017). It is clear that diet patterns are important with regard to exposure to POPs with vegetarians having lower levels of POPs in the body compared to meat eaters (Fraser, Webster, & McClean, 2009). ...
Chapter
A responsible food system is one that provides healthy and nutritious food, from ecologically sustainable production systems, that meets nutritional requirements for all stages of human life, while minimizing wastage and its negative impact on long-term planetary health. Our current food system meets none of these objectives. This chapter reviews data on the impact of diet on health and illness and shows how current dietary patterns are fueling an epidemic of chronic disease. We discuss the role and influence of government and industry on our current diet choices, summarize the impact of food production on environmental health, and provide evidence supporting the need for a global shift to a predominantly plant-based dietary pattern for both optimal human and planetary health. Governments, policy makers, health professionals, and the food industry urgently need to work together to forge a new food paradigm guided by the principles outlined in this chapter.
... Since POPs are biomagnified in the food chain, the level of contamination by POPs is mainly determined by dietary habits, in humans Luzardo et al., 2013;Rodríguez-Hernández et al., 2015a, 2015bVogt et al., 2012) and also in animals (Kunisue et al., 2005;Luzardo et al., 2014;Polischu et al., 2002;Ruiz-Suarez et al., 2015). Therefore, in most vertebrates the continuous exposure throughout life leads to the bioaccumulation of these substances, as to date it has been reported that only few species have the capability of fully eliminating them. ...
... Hamburger consumption had a significant negative effect on POP levels. This finding is not supported in the literature as several studies have reported POPs in meat [69] and may reflect the fact that these participants are less likely to eat fish, where we saw a strong association with POPs. Among the women who reported eating hamburger 2 or more times per week, 60 % reported never eating fish. ...
Article
Full-text available
Background Pregnant women are an especially important population to monitor for environmental exposures given the vulnerability of the developing fetus. During pregnancy and lactation chemical body burdens may change due to the significant physiological changes that occur. Developmental exposures to some persistent organic pollutants (POPs) have been linked with adverse health outcomes. Methods First trimester maternal and cord blood plasma concentrations of several POPs including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine pesticides (OCs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE)s and perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) were measured in samples from 1983 pregnant women enrolled in the Maternal-Infant Research on Environmental Chemicals (MIREC) cohort. Predictors of exposure were also identified. ResultsIn maternal plasma, there was >90 % detection for the perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluoroctane sulfonate (PFOS), perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS), and dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (DDE), oxychlordane and PCB 138 and 153. Cord blood plasma had much lower detection rates with low or very limited detection for most PCBs and PBDEs. The PFASs were the most frequently detected (23–64 %) chemical class in cord plasma. In a subset of 1st and 3rd trimester paired samples, PFAS concentrations were found to be strongly correlated and had ICCs ranging from 0.64 (PFOA) to 0.83 (PFHxS). The cord:maternal plasma concentration ratios ranged from 0.14 (PFOS) to 0.87 (oxychlordane, lipid adjusted). Similar to other studies, we found parity, maternal age, income, education, smoking status, pre-pregnancy BMI and fish consumption to be significant predictors for most chemicals. Those participants who were foreign-born had significantly higher concentrations of organochlorinated pesticides and PCBs. Conclusions In the MIREC study, multiple chemical contaminants were quantified in the plasma of pregnant women. In cord plasma PFOA had the highest detection rate. However, compared to other Canadian and international population studies, the MIREC participants had lower contaminant concentrations of these substances.
... The relatively high levels of DDT derivatives may seem surprising, as this substance was banned in Spain almost 5 decades ago. However, there is abundant literature that has documented that this pesticide was widely used in the Canary archipelago, and how this translates into the levels of this pesticide detected in food for human consumption produced in this region [39][40][41][42]. ...
Article
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The screening of hundreds of substances belonging to multiple chemical classes in liver is required in areas such as food safety or biomonitoring. We adapted a previous QuEChERS-based method in blood to the liver matrix and applied to these fields of study. The validation of the method allowed the inclusion of 351 contaminants, 80% with a LOQ < 2 ng/g. In the analysis of 42 consumer liver samples, we detected trace levels of 29 different contaminants. The most frequent and concentrated was 4,4’-DDE. POPs accounted for 66% of the compounds detected. In no case was the MRL reached for any of the contaminants detected. We also applied the method to 151 livers of wild birds to perform a biomonitoring pilot study in the Canary Islands. We detected 52 contaminants in 15 bird species. These were also mostly POPs, although high frequencies and concentrations of anticoagulant rodenticides (AR) and some other agricultural pesticides also stand out. POPs and AR contamination levels were significantly higher in terrestrial birds, raptors and particularly in nocturnal birds. Pesticide contamination levels were also higher in terrestrial birds, as well as in non-raptors and diurnal birds. The validated method is simple, robust, and sensitive and performs well in a variety of practical scenarios, where it can be carried out relatively quickly and inexpensively.
... The increased release of bile acids, cholecystokinin, and prostaglandins from the high total fat content of meat also increases the risk of colorectal and pancreatic cancers [199][200][201]. Further, Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), which accumulate in animal fat cells [202,203], may adversely affect endocrine pathways and increase risk of various chronic diseases, including cancer [203]. They are also present in lipoproteins and have been shown to be higher in participants with cancer compared to healthy individuals [204]. ...
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Red meat and processed meat consumption has been hypothesized to increase risk of cancer, but the evidence is inconsistent. We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective studies to summarize the evidence of associations between consumption of red meat (unprocessed), processed meat, and total red and processed meat with the incidence of various cancer types. We searched in MEDLINE and EMBASE databases through December 2020. Using a random-effect meta-analysis, we calculated the pooled relative risk (RR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) of the highest versus the lowest category of red meat, processed meat, and total red and processed meat consumption in relation to incidence of various cancers. We identified 148 published articles. Red meat consumption was significantly associated with greater risk of breast cancer (RR = 1.09; 95% CI = 1.03–1.15), endometrial cancer (RR = 1.25; 95% CI = 1.01-1.56), colorectal cancer (RR = 1.10; 95% CI = 1.03–1.17), colon cancer (RR = 1.17; 95% CI = 1.09-1.25), rectal cancer (RR = 1.22; 95% CI = 1.01-1.46), lung cancer (RR = 1.26; 95% CI = 1.09–1.44), and hepatocellular carcinoma (RR = 1.22; 95% CI = 1.01-1.46). Processed meat consumption was significantly associated with a 6% greater breast cancer risk, an 18% greater colorectal cancer risk, a 21% greater colon cancer risk, a 22% greater rectal cancer risk, and a 12% greater lung cancer risk. Total red and processed meat consumption was significantly associated with greater risk of colorectal cancer (RR = 1.17; 95% CI = 1.08–1.26), colon cancer (RR = 1.21; 95% CI = 1.09–1.34), rectal cancer (RR = 1.26; 95% CI = 1.09–1.45), lung cancer (RR = 1.20; 95% CI = 1.09-1.33), and renal cell cancer (RR = 1.19; 95% CI = 1.04–1.37). This comprehensive systematic review and meta-analysis study showed that high red meat intake was positively associated with risk of breast cancer, endometrial cancer, colorectal cancer, colon cancer, rectal cancer, lung cancer, and hepatocellular carcinoma, and high processed meat intake was positively associated with risk of breast, colorectal, colon, rectal, and lung cancers. Higher risk of colorectal, colon, rectal, lung, and renal cell cancers were also observed with high total red and processed meat consumption.
... Thus, median concentration of OCP were 1.25, 5.92, and 2.16 ng/mL among people working in the primary, secondary and tertiary sectors, respectively (P < 0.0001, Data not shown). Differences in concentration must be explained by other factors, and diet may be one of the most important (Almeida-Gonzalez and Luzardo and Almeida-Gonzalez, 2012;Luzardo and Rodriguez-Hernandez, 2013;Boada and Sangil, 2014;Hernandez and Boada, 2017;Rodriguez-Hernandez and Camacho, 2017). The PERVE-MAC II project included, among its objectives, a nutritional survey whose data will be analyzed in the near future, with the intention of finding out the role of diet in this specific population. ...
Article
International Public Health authorities recommend biomonitoring studies to assess the exposure to chemicals in the general population. The aim of the present study was to analyze the blood concentrations of a total 360 pollutants, including 230 pesticides in current or recent use, 59 persistent organochlorine pollutants (POPs), 11 anticoagulant rodenticides and 60 pharmaceutical active compounds (PhACs), in a cohort of 403 subjects from Cape Verde. The study was performed in the frame of the Pesticide Residues in Vegetables of the Macaronesia project (PERVEMAC-II). A total of 60 out of 360 toxic compounds (16.7%) were detected, at least, in one participant. The three most frequently detected substances were p,p’-DDE (100%), phenanthrene (94.0%) and hexachlobenzene (35.9%). 2-Phenylphenol and imidacloprid were detected in 29.0 and 14.4% of the population. The three substances with the highest serum concentrations were PhACs: naproxen (249.1 ng/mL), metronidazole (115.6 ng/mL) and acetaminophen (25.2 ng/mL). Median blood concentration of p,p’-DDE, HCB and phenanthrene were 1.87, 0.08 and 0.36 ng/mL. Blood concentrations of POPs were influenced by age, although both gender and body mass index may exert an influence in the presence of these substances. Lifestyle has an effect on the concentration of these substances, especially in terms of dietary habits. Both the frequency of detection and the concentration of the studied substances are similar to those of other biomonitored populations. This is the first biomonitoring study carried out in Cape Verde. Our results may be useful for the implementation of public health measures by the competent authorities.
... Reports have shown that OCPs tend to mimic the activities of the thyroid hormones when they get into the body of animals and humans there-by reducing the hormonal efficiency and destructing the neurobehavioral and reproductive systems in the body systems [7]. Furthermore, the carcinogenic potentials of this chemical class have been reported in works of literature [8,9]. This fact and many others have made this pollutant class to be extensively studied especially among environmental scientist. ...
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The analysis of organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) in ecosystem components has been a major niche area among environmental scientists, probably due to their endocrine-disruptive properties. Here, we evaluated the global research productivity of OCPs research from 1992 to 2018 using various bibliometric indices. A total of 2326 articles that focused on OCPs research in biological and environmental matrices were retrieved from the Web of Science (WoS). A steady progression on OCPs article production was noticed during the survey period with regression and Lokta distribution models suggesting that more research outputs on this pollutant class is imminent in years to come. The People's Republic of China and the United States were respectively ranked first and second in both ‘most productive countries’ and ‘countries with the highest number of citations.’ Not surprisingly, these two countries also had the most collaborative network with not less than ten collaboration linkages with other countries. This study shows the high involvement of OCPs research from scientists domiciled in developed countries. However, international collaboration should be encouraged particularly between developed and developing countries. To this end, more research programs should be established to monitor OCPs in regions where they have been used in the past especially in Africa. This bibliometric survey will assist policymakers and researchers in designing future research and allocating funds involving OCPs research.
... The residues of ubiquitous environmental pollutants such as brominated flame retardants (BFRs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), per-/polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), or polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in food constitute a major concern in food safety programs [1][2][3]. For this reason, the availability of rapid, simple, robust, sensitive, and inexpensive analytical approaches is essential for the monitoring of these compounds to ensure that the food is safe for consumption. ...
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Interference of residual lipids is a very common problem in ultratrace analysis of contaminants in fatty matrices. Therefore, quick and effective clean-up techniques applicable to multiple groups of analytes are much needed. Cartridge and dispersive solid-phase extraction (SPE and dSPE) are often used for this purpose. In this context, we evaluated the lipid clean-up efficiency and performance of four commonly used sorbents—silica, C18, Z-Sep, and EMR-lipid—for the determination of organic pollutants in fatty fish samples (10%) extracted using ethyl acetate or the QuEChERS method. Namely, 17 polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), 22 organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), 13 brominated flame retardants (BFRs), 19 per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), and 16 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were determined in this study. The clean-up efficiency was evaluated by direct analysis in real time coupled with time-of-flight mass spectrometry (DART-HRMS). The triacylglycerols (TAGs) content in the purified extracts were significantly reduced. The EMR-lipid sorbent was the most efficient of the dSPE sorbents used for the determination of POPs and PAHs in this study. The recoveries of the POPs and PAHs obtained by the validated QuEChERS method followed by the dSPE EMR-lipid sorbent ranged between 59 and 120%, with repeatabilities ranging between 2 and 23% and LOQs ranging between 0.02 and 1.50 µg·kg−1.
... PAHs have mutagenic, carcinogenic, and cause endocrine system problems (Dutta et al. 2017). The carcinogenic effect of those organic pollutants on body organs appears after prolonged periods of exposure (Ljunggren et al., 2014;Hernández et al., 2017;Koual et al., 2019). ...
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In this study, two bacterial strains isolated from an oil-contaminated soil, designated as AramcoS2 and AramcoS4 were able to degrade crude oil, long-chain n -alkanes of C 10 to C 20 ; ( n -decane, n -undecane, n -dodecane, n -tridecane, n -tetradecane, n -pentadecane, n -hexadecane, n -heptadecane, n -octadecane n -nonadecane, and n -eicosane) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) including biphenyl, naphthalene, and anthracene. Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) technique was conducted to analyze and identify the crude oil residues after biodegradation. AramcoS2 and AramcoS4 were able to reduce the concentration of long-chain n -alkanes of C 10 -C 20 efficiently on average by 77% of the original concentration. Both isolates could also degrade PAHs on average by 67% of the original concentration within 7 and 14 days of incubation at 30ºC, pH=6.8±0.2. The 16S rRNA gene sequences of AramcoS2 and S4 classified these isolates as Actinobacteria; well-known alkanes and PAHs degraders. The nucleotide sequences of AramcoS2 and AramcoS4 were submitted to the GenBank database under the accession numbers MN142506 and MN142551, respectively . Both isolates can be used to restore the environments contaminated with crude oil components. They should be of great practical significance both in bioremediation of soil contaminated with crude oil and bio-treatment of oil spills on surface water.
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In recent years, there is an increasing trend to consume organic foods instead of the conventional foodstuffs. This tendency is mainly due to the concern raised by the potential adverse health effects derived from the intake of pesticides, fertilizers, hormones and antibiotics, which are widely used in regular food production. Although organic label forbids the use of these products, environmental contamination is likely to occur in both, conventional and organic foodstuffs. The main purpose of this review was to compare the levels of a number of environmental pollutants such as polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), mycotoxins, trace elements, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), etc., in organic and conventional food items. The results show that, in general, the presence of nearby anthropogenic sources of pollution is the key issue influencing the occurrence of environmental pollutants in foodstuffs, regardless their organic or conventional origin. Based on this, we suggest that environmental contaminants should be monitored in both conventional and organic foods. Finally, the safety feature, which has been globally attributed to organic foods, might be questionable depending on the potential environmental contamination of these foods.
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For the first time in South America, a four-year survey (2011–2014) was conducted to assess the occurrence of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and furans (PCDD/Fs) and dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (dl-PCBs) in different raw meats (bovine, pork, ovine, chicken, and turkey) sampled from ten of the fifteen regions of Chile. When expressed as pg World Health Organization Toxic Equivalent (WHO-TEQ2005) g−1 fat, the highest PCDD/F values for each species were 0.54 (bovine-2012), 0.27 (pork-2013), 0.23 (ovine-2011), 0.61 (chickens-2013), and 0.34 (turkey-2012). The highest mean dl-PCBs levels were 0.18 (bovine-2011), 0.05 (pork-2014), 0.13 (ovine-2011), 0.1 (chicken-2014), and 0.21 (turkey-2013). Penta- and tetra-chlorinated congeners dominated PCDD/F WHO-TEQ2005 profiles during the survey, while PCB 126 dominated dl-PCBs profiles. Statistically significant interspecies differences were found. Dietary intake was also estimated, and the highest total PCDD/F and dl-PCBs values, found in poultry meat, were 0.09 pg WHO-TEQ2005 kg−1 bw d−1 (2013) for adults and 0.36 pg WHO-TEQ2005 kg−1 bw d− 1 (2013) for children. The concentrations and dietary intakes for the studied compounds in raw meat were below international and national maximum permitted limits.
Article
For the first time in South America, a four-year survey (2011–2014) was conducted to assess the occurrence of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and furans (PCDD/Fs) and dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (dl-PCBs) in different raw meats (bovine, pork, ovine, chicken, and turkey) sampled from ten of the fifteen regions of Chile. When expressed as pg World Health Organization Toxic Equivalent (WHO-TEQ2005) g−1 fat, the highest PCDD/F values for each species were 0.54 (bovine-2012), 0.27 (pork-2013), 0.23 (ovine-2011), 0.61 (chickens-2013), and 0.34 (turkey-2012). The highest mean dl-PCBs levels were 0.18 (bovine-2011), 0.05 (pork-2014), 0.13 (ovine-2011), 0.1 (chicken-2014), and 0.21 (turkey-2013). Penta- and tetra-chlorinated congeners dominated PCDD/F WHO-TEQ2005 profiles during the survey, while PCB 126 dominated dl-PCBs profiles. Statistically significant interspecies differences were found. Dietary intake was also estimated, and the highest total PCDD/F and dl-PCBs values, found in poultry meat, were 0.09 pg WHO-TEQ2005 kg−1 bw d−1 (2013) for adults and 0.36 pg WHO-TEQ2005 kg−1 bw d− 1 (2013) for children. The concentrations and dietary intakes for the studied compounds in raw meat were below international and national maximum permitted limits.
Chapter
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are a large group of chemical contaminants, predominantly produced via fossil fuel combustion. They spread easily worldwide, so they are considered as semipersistent pollutants. Many of them are considered as carcinogenic or mutagenic compounds, for example, interacting directly with DNA. Benzo(a)pyrene (BaP) is the most important and well-known PAH. Living beings are exposed everyday through air, water, plastic stuff and smoke and almost by food intake, because they are highly lipophilic. In human risk assessments, monitoring these compounds, or their products, in environment, biological or food samples has attracted enormous interest. Pets commonly share habitat and routine life with humans. In this chapter, the possibility that pets were good sentinels of human exposure to PAHs is studied in detail. Concentrations of parental PAHs and some metabolites between human and pets have been compared. In the case of dogs, their concentrations and profiles of PAHs are very different to those of humans when compared. Dogs had lesser concentration of parental compounds and higher concentration of their metabolites than humans. Similarly, cats present different concentrations and detection frequencies than humans. Therefore, the scarce data available indicate that dogs and cats seem to have different sources of exposition to PAHs than humans. Although more studies are needed, pets do not seem to be good sentinels for human exposure to PAHs.
Chapter
Integrative and functional medical nutrition therapy is done within the context of therapeutic and healing partnerships. No two patients are treated identically in functional medicine. It is an equal investment of focus by both the dietitian/nutrition1ist and the patient to work together to identify where to apply the leverage of change – may it be nutritional or related to sleep, exercise, supplements, relationships, or stress management. The human organism is a complex adaptive system with countless points of access. Therefore, interventions at one level will affect points of activity in other areas as well. Changing an individual’s nutrition plan can have myriad effects on health, from reducing inflammation to reversing coronary artery disease or insulin resistance and even impacting cognitive decline.
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Meat is one of the staples of the human diet, which provides high-quality nutrients, but that also constitutes a relevant source of cholesterol and saturated fatty acids. Epidemiologic studies have linked consumption of red or processed meat with obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and cancers. Most epidemiological studies suggest that a high intake of meat, especially processed meat, is associated with increased colorectal cancer risk. Potential reasons for the association between high meat intake and colorectal cancer risk include some chemicals naturally contained in meat, or generated by the processing and cooking. From the literature it can be concluded that there is enough epidemiological evidence linking processed meat intake and colorectal cancer risk, but there is limited evidence regarding unprocessed red meat intake and the disease. On the contrary, there is only limited evidence linking meat intake with other diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes or other cancers. Nevertheless, the literature suggest that dietary intervention may be a promising approach for prevention of cancers of the colon, esophagus, liver, stomach and bladder, and type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease which still need to be confirmed by further well designed prospective studies and experimental research.
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Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) are widespread environmental contaminants. PCBs have endocrine disrupting properties which raises concerns regarding their effect on the developing fetus. This study aimed to examine the association between prenatal exposure to PCBs and anogenital distance (AGD) in newborns. Serum concentrations of PCB congeners -118, -138, -153 and -180 were measured in 175 pregnant women presenting to the delivery room. AGD was measured in their newborns. Regression models were used to estimate associations between maternal PCB exposure and infant anogenital measurements, controlling for possible confounding variables. Mean maternal serum concentrations were 2.95 ± 2.18 ng/g, 4.62 ± 3.54 ng/g, 7.67 ± 6.42 ng/g and 5.10 ± 3.91 ng/g for congeners -118, -138, -153 and -180, respectively. Higher maternal concentrations of PCBs were associated with reduced AGD measures in male infants. Higher maternal concentrations of PCB-138 and PCB-153 were associated with reduced ano-scrotal distances and higher maternal concentrations of all four PCB congeners were associated with reduced ano-penile distances. No significant associations were found between any PCB congener and any AGD measure in female newborns. This study demonstrates that intrauterine exposure to PCBs may be associated with reduced AGD in male newborns. More research is needed to reveal the implications for adult reproductive health.
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Meat and meat products is one of the most relevant food groups in an important number of human diets. Recently, the IARC, based on results of a number of epidemiological studies, classified the consumptions of red meat and processed meat as “probably carcinogenic to humans” and as “carcinogenic to humans”, respectively. It was suggested that the substances responsible of the potential carcinogenicity would be mainly generated during meat processing, such as curing and smoking, or when meat is heated at high temperatures. However, the exposure to environmental pollutants through meat consumption was not discussed. The purpose of the present paper was to review recent studies reporting the concentrations of PCDD/Fs, DL-PCBs and PAHs in meat and meat products, as well as the human exposure to these pollutants through the diet. It is concluded that the health risks derived from exposure to carcinogenic environmental contaminants must be considered in the context of each specific diet, which besides meat and meat products, includes other foodstuffs containing also chemical pollutants, some of them with carcinogenic potential. Anyhow, meat and meat products are not the main food group responsible of the dietary exposure to carcinogenic (or probably carcinogenic) environmental organic pollutants.
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Abstract N-Nitroso compounds (NOCs), heterocyclic amines (HCAs), and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PHAs) are examples of carcinogenic substances, which are formed during cooking and processing of meat. Many researches suggest that high consumption of meat is positively associated with increased risk of some cancers. The majority of the researches are of epidemiological nature and, therefore, provide only associations related to population exposure to diet-related carcinogenic substances. The individual's exposure risk may be estimated by using food frequency questionnaire and analytical methods. However, there is a lack of methods which enable estimation of the risk concerning particular meat meals. The purpose of this paper was to summarize and emphasize the importance of factors influencing the formation of carcinogenic substances in meat during cooking.
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Lifestyle, dietary patterns and nutritional status of organic food consumers have rarely been described, while interest for a sustainable diet is markedly increasing. Consumer attitude and frequency of use of 18 organic products were assessed in 54,311 adult participants in the Nutrinet-Santé cohort. Cluster analysis was performed to identify behaviors associated with organic product consumption. Socio-demographic characteristics, food consumption and nutrient intake across clusters are provided. Cross-sectional association with overweight/obesity was estimated using polytomous logistic regression. FIVE CLUSTERS WERE IDENTIFIED: 3 clusters of non-consumers whose reasons differed, occasional (OCOP, 51%) and regular (RCOP, 14%) organic product consumers. RCOP were more highly educated and physically active than other clusters. They also exhibited dietary patterns that included more plant foods and less sweet and alcoholic beverages, processed meat or milk. Their nutrient intake profiles (fatty acids, most minerals and vitamins, fibers) were healthier and they more closely adhered to dietary guidelines. In multivariate models (after accounting for confounders, including level of adherence to nutritional guidelines), compared to those not interested in organic products, RCOP participants showed a markedly lower probability of overweight (excluding obesity) (25≤body mass index<30) and obesity (body mass index ≥30): -36% and -62% in men and -42% and -48% in women, respectively (P<0.0001). OCOP participants (%) generally showed intermediate figures. Regular consumers of organic products, a sizeable group in our sample, exhibit specific socio-demographic characteristics, and an overall healthy profile which should be accounted for in further studies analyzing organic food intake and health markers.
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Human breast milk represents the best choice for the nutrition of infants. However, in addition to containing beneficial nutrients and antibodies, it can also be considered the best indicator of infant exposure to contaminants. We developed a multi-residue method using a modified QuEChERS (quick, easy, cheap, effective, rugged, and safe) procedure and capillary gas chromatography-triple quadrupole mass spectrometry for the determination of 57 persistent organic pollutants, including 23 organochlorine pesticides, 18 polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) congeners, and 16 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in human milk and colostrum samples. We have used primary secondary amine in the clean-up step as it gave a more efficient separation of the analytes from fat and superior removal of the co-extracted substances compared with gel permeation chromatography. No significant matrix effect was observed for the tested pollutants, and therefore matrix-matched calibration was not necessary. The average recoveries from spiked samples were in the range of 74.8-113.0 %. The precision was satisfactory, with relative standard deviations below 16 %, while values of 0.1-0.4 μg L(-1) were established as the limit of quantification for all the target analytes (0.05 and 100 μg L(-1)). The method was successfully applied to the analysis of 18 human colostrum and 23 mature milk samples. All the samples tested were positive for at least nine different residues, with some samples containing up to 24 contaminants. Remarkably, the contaminants hexachlorobenzene, p,p'-DDE, PCB 138, PCB 180, phenanthrene, fluoranthene, and pyrene were present in 100 % of the colostrum and mature milk samples analyzed.
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Human activities are emitting persistent organic pollutants (POPs) to the environment. These compounds have raised concerns about the risk of transfer through the food chain via animal products. They are characterized by a strong persistence in environmental matrices and a lipophilicity which may lead to their accumulation in fat tissues. In EU Regulations (no. 1881/2006, 1259/2011), maximum acceptable levels for polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), and dioxin-like or nondioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in food of animal origin have been set. Transfer rates from contaminated fodder to milk have been established: for PCBs, the rate of transfer varies from 5 to 90 % and for PCDD/Fs from 1 to 40 %. The differential transfer of the compounds towards milk is related to the hydrophobicity of the pollutants and to their metabolic susceptibility. According to numerous authors, soil is the major reservoir for POPs, and its involuntary ingestion by farm animals reared outdoors may be the main cause of animal product contamination (meat, milk, or eggs). Recent studies seem to indicate that soil is a real risk matrix in terms of transfer of pollutants to the food chain. A POP crisis management is extremely difficult, since it impacts many farmers located in the contaminated area. The question arising is to know if livestock contaminated by POPs may be decontaminated and further used for their initial purpose. Recent data demonstrate that the decontamination process appear feasible and depends on initial level of contamination or the physiological status of the animals.
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Background: In the absence of current cumulative dietary exposure assessments, this analysis was conducted to estimate exposure to multiple dietary contaminants for children, who are more vulnerable to toxic exposure than adults. Methods: We estimated exposure to multiple food contaminants based on dietary data from preschool-age children (2-4 years, n=207), school-age children (5-7 years, n=157), parents of young children (n=446), and older adults (n=149). We compared exposure estimates for eleven toxic compounds (acrylamide, arsenic, lead, mercury, chlorpyrifos, permethrin, endosulfan, dieldrin, chlordane, DDE, and dioxin) based on self-reported food frequency data by age group. To determine if cancer and non-cancer benchmark levels were exceeded, chemical levels in food were derived from publicly available databases including the Total Diet Study. Results: Cancer benchmark levels were exceeded by all children (100%) for arsenic, dieldrin, DDE, and dioxins. Non-cancer benchmarks were exceeded by >95% of preschool-age children for acrylamide and by 10% of preschool-age children for mercury. Preschool-age children had significantly higher estimated intakes of 6 of 11 compounds compared to school-age children (p<0.0001 to p=0.02). Based on self-reported dietary data, the greatest exposure to pesticides from foods included in this analysis were tomatoes, peaches, apples, peppers, grapes, lettuce, broccoli, strawberries, spinach, dairy, pears, green beans, and celery. Conclusions: Dietary strategies to reduce exposure to toxic compounds for which cancer and non-cancer benchmarks are exceeded by children vary by compound. These strategies include consuming organically produced dairy and selected fruits and vegetables to reduce pesticide intake, consuming less animal foods (meat, dairy, and fish) to reduce intake of persistent organic pollutants and metals, and consuming lower quantities of chips, cereal, crackers, and other processed carbohydrate foods to reduce acrylamide intake.
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Residue levels of organochlorine pesticides (OCP) in a total of 90 cattle samples comprising meat, liver and kidney collected from carcasses slaughtered in six towns in West Shoa Zone, Ethiopia, (Ambo, Guder, Ginchi, Gedo, Holeta and Tikur Inchini), have been determined. The pesticides were extracted by solid phase extraction (SPE) and quantification was carried out using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). A good linearity (r(2) > 0.998) was found in the range 0.001-7.00 mg/kg for the samples studied. Most of the pesticides had recoveries in the range 81-99% and values of relative standard deviation (RSD) <7.2% for repeatability and reproducibility, showing good accuracy and precision of the method. The concentration level of the studied organochlorines followed the order: p, p' dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane (DDT) > endosulfan>o,p'-DDT >lindane>dieldrin>endrin>aldrin>chlorothanolin while the order of contamination in the analyzed organs was liver > kidney > meat. Heat treatment of the meat, kidney and liver samples (boiling for 90 min.) produced an overall reduction of 62.2%, 44.5%, 37.7%, 29%, 31%, 34.3% and 30.8% in lindane, o, p'-DDT, endosulfan, p, p'-DDT, chlorothanolin, aldrin, dieldrin, and endrin, respectively. Although the residual contents of the organochlorines detected in all the contaminated samples analyzed from the six cities were below the respective maximal permissible levels set by international organizations, samples from Holeta town were more contaminated and may necessitate effective monitoring as bioaccumulation of these residues may pose health problems in human beings.
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The health benefits of organic foods are unclear. To review evidence comparing the health effects of organic and conventional foods. MEDLINE (January 1966 to May 2011), EMBASE, CAB Direct, Agricola, TOXNET, Cochrane Library (January 1966 to May 2009), and bibliographies of retrieved articles. English-language reports of comparisons of organically and conventionally grown food or of populations consuming these foods. 2 independent investigators extracted data on methods, health outcomes, and nutrient and contaminant levels. 17 studies in humans and 223 studies of nutrient and contaminant levels in foods met inclusion criteria. Only 3 of the human studies examined clinical outcomes, finding no significant differences between populations by food type for allergic outcomes (eczema, wheeze, atopic sensitization) or symptomatic Campylobacter infection. Two studies reported significantly lower urinary pesticide levels among children consuming organic versus conventional diets, but studies of biomarker and nutrient levels in serum, urine, breast milk, and semen in adults did not identify clinically meaningful differences. All estimates of differences in nutrient and contaminant levels in foods were highly heterogeneous except for the estimate for phosphorus; phosphorus levels were significantly higher than in conventional produce, although this difference is not clinically significant. The risk for contamination with detectable pesticide residues was lower among organic than conventional produce (risk difference, 30% [CI, -37% to -23%]), but differences in risk for exceeding maximum allowed limits were small. Escherichia coli contamination risk did not differ between organic and conventional produce. Bacterial contamination of retail chicken and pork was common but unrelated to farming method. However, the risk for isolating bacteria resistant to 3 or more antibiotics was higher in conventional than in organic chicken and pork (risk difference, 33% [CI, 21% to 45%]). Studies were heterogeneous and limited in number, and publication bias may be present. The published literature lacks strong evidence that organic foods are significantly more nutritious than conventional foods. Consumption of organic foods may reduce exposure to pesticide residues and antibiotic-resistant bacteria. None.
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This work examined the Spanish population's degree of accordance with the Mediterranean diet (MD). This was a cross-sectional study conducted in 2008-2010 among 11,742 individuals representative of the Spanish population aged ≥18 y. Habitual food consumption was assessed with a computerized diet history. Accordance of food consumption with the MD was assessed with the MD Adherence Screener (MEDAS) score using the cutoffs ≥9 to define strict accordance and ≥7 (mid-range value) for modest accordance. Accordance of nutrient intake with the MD was defined as ≥4.5 points (mid-range value) on the high-unsaturated fat OmniHeart diet score. The diet of 12% (95% CI: 11.3-12.7%) of the Spanish population reached MEDAS-based strict accordance with the MD and 46% (95% CI: 44.7-47.7) attained modest accordance. Moreover, 39.0% (95%: 37.8-40.1%) of the population achieved OnmiHeart-based MD accordance. Factor analysis identified 2 main dietary patterns. The first one was called "Westernized" and was rich in red and processed meat, French fries, refined cereals, and sweetened beverages and poor in fresh fruit; the second pattern was named "Mediterranean" and was rich in olive oil and plant-based foods. Regardless of how it was defined, MD accordance was less frequent and the Westernized pattern was more frequent among the younger, the less educated, current smokers, and those less physically active and more sedentary. In conclusion, the Spanish population is drifting away from the MD to adopt a less healthy diet, typical of Western countries. The departure from the MD mostly affects the socially disadvantaged and clusters with other unhealthy lifestyles, which may have synergistic undesirable effects on health.
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All the relevant risk factors contributing to breast cancer etiology are not fully known. Exposure to organochlorine pesticides has been linked to an increased incidence of the disease, although not all data have been consistent. Most published studies evaluated the exposure to organochlorines individually, ignoring the potential effects exerted by the mixtures of chemicals. This population-based study was designed to evaluate the profile of mixtures of organochlorines detected in 103 healthy women and 121 women diagnosed with breast cancer from Gran Canaria Island, and the relation between the exposure to these compounds and breast cancer risk. The most prevalent mixture of organochlorines among healthy women was the combination of lindane and endrin, and this mixture was not detected in any affected women. Breast cancer patients presented more frequently a combination of aldrin, dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (DDE) and dichlorodiphenyldichloroethane (DDD), and this mixture was not found in any healthy woman. After adjusting for covariables, the risk of breast cancer was moderately associated with DDD (OR = 1.008, confidence interval 95% 1.001-1.015, p = 0.024). This study indicates that healthy women show a very different profile of organochlorine pesticide mixtures than breast cancer patients, suggesting that organochlorine pesticide mixtures could play a relevant role in breast cancer risk.
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The effects of pesticides on the general population, largely as a result of dietary exposure, are unclear. Adopting an organic diet appears to be an obvious solution for reducing dietary pesticide exposure and this is supported by biomonitoring studies in children. However, results of research into the effects of organic diets on pesticide exposure are difficult to interpret in light of the many complexities. Therefore future studies must be carefully designed. While biomonitoring can account for differences in overall exposure it cannot necessarily attribute the source. Due diligence must be given to appropriate selection of participants, target pesticides and analytical methods to ensure that the data generated will be both scientifically rigorous and clinically useful, while minimising the costs and difficulties associated with biomonitoring studies. Study design must also consider confounders such as the unpredictable nature of chemicals and inter- and intra-individual differences in exposure and other factors that might influence susceptibility to disease. Currently the most useful measures are non-specific urinary metabolites that measure a range of organophosphate and synthetic pyrethroid insecticides. These pesticides are in common use, frequently detected in population studies and may provide a broader overview of the impact of an organic diet on pesticide exposure than pesticide-specific metabolites. More population based studies are needed for comparative purposes and improvements in analytical methods are required before many other compounds can be considered for assessment.
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In mammals, sexual differentiation of the hypothalamus occurs during prenatal and early postnatal development due in large part to sex differences in hormones. These early organizational processes are critically important for the attainment and maintenance of adult reproductive functions. We tested the hypothesis that perinatal exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) that disrupt hormonal pathways would perturb reproductive maturation and the sexually dimorphic development of neuroendocrine systems in the preoptic area (POA). Pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats were injected on gestational d 16 and 18 with vehicle (dimethylsulfoxide), Aroclor 1221 (A1221, an estrogenic PCB mix), a reconstituted PCB mixture representing those highest in human body burden (PCBs 138, 153, 180), or estradiol benzoate, an estrogenic control. Male and female pups were monitored for somatic and reproductive development. In adulthood, some rats were perfused and used for immunohistochemistry of estrogen receptor α, kisspeptin, and coexpression of Fos in GnRH neurons. Other rats were used to obtain fresh-frozen POA dissections for use in a PCR-based 48-gene expression array. Pubertal onset was advanced and estrous cyclicity irregular in endocrine-disrupted females. Furthermore, sexual differentiation of female neuroendocrine systems was masculinized/defeminized. Specifically, in the adult female anteroventral periventricular nucleus, estrogen receptor α-cell numbers and kisspeptin fiber density were significantly decreased, as was GnRH-Fos coexpression. PCR analysis identified androgen receptor, IGF-I, N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor subunit NR2b, and TGFβ1 mRNAs as significantly down-regulated in endocrine-disrupted female POAs. These data suggest that developmental PCBs profoundly impair the sexual differentiation of the female hypothalamus.
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Synthetic chemicals currently used in a variety of industrial and agricultural applications are leading to widespread contamination of the environment. Even though the intended uses of pesticides, plasticizers, antimicrobials, and flame retardants are beneficial, effects on human health are a global concern. These so-called endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) can disrupt hormonal balance and result in developmental and reproductive abnormalities. New in vitro, in vivo, and epidemiological studies link human EDC exposure with obesity, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes. Here we review the main chemical compounds that may contribute to metabolic disruption. We then present their demonstrated or suggested mechanisms of action with respect to nuclear receptor signaling. Finally, we discuss the difficulties of fairly assessing the risks linked to EDC exposure, including developmental exposure, problems of high- and low-dose exposure, and the complexity of current chemical environments.
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The objective of this article is to extend our previous studies of persistent organic pollutant (POP) contamination of U.S. food by measuring perfluorinated compounds (PFCs), organochlorine pesticides, and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in composite food samples. This study is part of a larger study reported in two articles, the other of which reports levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers and hexabromocyclododecane brominated flame retardants in these composite foods [Schecter et al. 2010. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and hexabromocyclodecane (HBCD) in composite U.S. food samples, Environ Health Perspect 118:357-362]. In this study we measured concentrations of 32 organochlorine pesticides, 7 PCBs, and 11 PFCs in composite samples of 31 different types of food (310 individual food samples) purchased from supermarkets in Dallas, Texas (USA), in 2009. Dietary intake of these chemicals was calculated for an average American. Contamination varied greatly among chemical and food types. The highest level of pesticide contamination was from the dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) metabolite p,p -dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene, which ranged from 0.028 ng/g wet weight (ww) in whole milk yogurt to 2.3 ng/g ww in catfish fillets. We found PCB congeners (28, 52, 101, 118, 138, 153, and 180) primarily in fish, with highest levels in salmon (PCB-153, 1.2 ng/g ww; PCB-138, 0.93 ng/g ww). For PFCs, we detected perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) in 17 of 31 samples, ranging from 0.07 ng/g in potatoes to 1.80 ng/g in olive oil. In terms of dietary intake, DDT and DDT metabolites, endosulfans, aldrin, PCBs, and PFOA were consumed at the highest levels. Despite product bans, we found POPs in U.S. food, and mixtures of these chemicals are consumed by the American public at varying levels. This suggests the need to expand testing of food for chemical contaminants.
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Organic products were analysed for the presence of contaminants, microorganisms and antibiotic resistance and compared with those from conventional products. No differences were observed in the Fusarium toxins deoxynivalenol and zearalenone in organic and conventional wheat, during both a dry period and a very wet period which promoted the production of these toxins. Nitrate levels in head lettuce produced organically in the open field were much lower than those in conventional products. In iceberg lettuce and head lettuce from the greenhouse, no differences were detected. Organically produced carrots contained higher nitrate levels than conventional products. Both organic and conventional products contained no residues of non-polar pesticides above the legal limits, although some were detected in conventional lettuce. Organic products contained no elevated levels of heavy metals. Salmonella was detected in 30% of pig faeces samples obtained from 30 organic farms, similar to the incidence at conventional farms. At farms that switched to organic production more then 6 years ago no Salmonella was detected, with the exception of one stable with young pigs recently purchased from another farm. No Salmonella was detected in faeces at the nine farms with organic broilers, and at one out of ten farms with laying hens. This is comparable with conventional farms where the incidence for Salmonella lies around 10%. Campylobacter was detected in faeces at all organic broiler farms, being much higher than at conventional farms. One of the most remarkable results was the fact that faeces from organic pigs and broilers showed a much lower incidence of antibiotic resistant bacteria, except for Campylobacter in broilers. It is concluded that the organic products investigated scored as equally well as conventional products with regard to food safety and at the same time show some promising features with respect to antibiotic resistance.
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Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are complex mixtures of persistent contaminants that are widespread in the environment. Newborns are exposed across the placenta and through breast feeding. Experimental animal studies have indicated that PCBs are neurotoxic. The neurological effects of these compounds on children are not clear. A systematic review of literature on the relation between neurological development in children and exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls. Seven follow up studies evaluated the effect of prenatal exposure to PCBs. Two of these studies evaluated highly exposed children. In newborns, an increase of the abnormal reflexes was observed in all four studies evaluating it. During the first months of life, a decrease in motor skills was observed in four of the five studies that investigated psychomotor development; deficits in the acquisition of cognitive skills were observed only in one study assessing non-highly exposed populations. At 4 years of age, an effect on the cognitive areas was observed in four of the five studies that evaluated it. Postnatal exposure to PCBs through breast feeding was not clearly related to any effect on neurological development. These studies suggest a subtle adverse effect of prenatal PCBs exposure on child neurodevelopment. Differences in study design, inconsistency in some of the results, and the lack of adequate quantitative exposure data, do not allow the derivation of the degree of risk associated with neurodevelopmental effects at current levels of exposure.
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In June 2005, a World Health Organization (WHO)-International Programme on Chemical Safety expert meeting was held in Geneva during which the toxic equivalency factors (TEFs) for dioxin-like compounds, including some polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), were reevaluated. For this reevaluation process, the refined TEF database recently published by Haws et al. (2006, Toxicol. Sci. 89, 4-30) was used as a starting point. Decisions about a TEF value were made based on a combination of unweighted relative effect potency (REP) distributions from this database, expert judgment, and point estimates. Previous TEFs were assigned in increments of 0.01, 0.05, 0.1, etc., but for this reevaluation, it was decided to use half order of magnitude increments on a logarithmic scale of 0.03, 0.1, 0.3, etc. Changes were decided by the expert panel for 2,3,4,7,8-pentachlorodibenzofuran (PeCDF) (TEF = 0.3), 1,2,3,7,8-pentachlorodibenzofuran (PeCDF) (TEF = 0.03), octachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin and octachlorodibenzofuran (TEFs = 0.0003), 3,4,4',5-tetrachlorbiphenyl (PCB 81) (TEF = 0.0003), 3,3',4,4',5,5'-hexachlorobiphenyl (PCB 169) (TEF = 0.03), and a single TEF value (0.00003) for all relevant mono-ortho-substituted PCBs. Additivity, an important prerequisite of the TEF concept was again confirmed by results from recent in vivo mixture studies. Some experimental evidence shows that non-dioxin-like aryl hydrocarbon receptor agonists/antagonists are able to impact the overall toxic potency of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) and related compounds, and this needs to be investigated further. Certain individual and groups of compounds were identified for possible future inclusion in the TEF concept, including 3,4,4'-TCB (PCB 37), polybrominated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans, mixed polyhalogenated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans, polyhalogenated naphthalenes, and polybrominated biphenyls. Concern was expressed about direct application of the TEF/total toxic equivalency (TEQ) approach to abiotic matrices, such as soil, sediment, etc., for direct application in human risk assessment. This is problematic as the present TEF scheme and TEQ methodology are primarily intended for estimating exposure and risks via oral ingestion (e.g., by dietary intake). A number of future approaches to determine alternative or additional TEFs were also identified. These included the use of a probabilistic methodology to determine TEFs that better describe the associated levels of uncertainty and "systemic" TEFs for blood and adipose tissue and TEQ for body burden.
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Organic products were analysed for the presence of contaminants, microorganisms and antibiotic resistance and compared with those from conventional products. No differences were observed in the Fusarium toxins deoxynivalenol and zearalenone in organic and conventional wheat, during both a dry period and a very wet period which promoted the production of these toxins. Nitrate levels in head lettuce produced organically in the open field were much lower than those in conventional products. In iceberg lettuce and head lettuce from the greenhouse, no differences were detected. Organically produced carrots contained higher nitrate levels than conventional products. Both organic and conventional products contained no residues of non-polar pesticides above the legal limits, although some were detected in conventional lettuce. Organic products contained no elevated levels of heavy metals. Salmonella was detected in 30% of pig faeces samples obtained from 30 organic farms, similar to the incidence at conventional farms. At farms that switched to organic production more then 6 years ago no Salmonella was detected, with the exception of one stable with young pigs recently purchased from another farm. No Salmonella was detected in faeces at the nine farms with organic broilers, and at one out of ten farms with laying hens. This is comparable with conventional farms where the incidence for Salmonella lies around 10%. Campylobacter was detected in faeces at all organic broiler farms, being much higher than at conventional farms. One of the most remarkable results was the fact that faeces from organic pigs and broilers showed a much lower incidence of antibiotic resistant bacteria, except for Campylobacter in broilers. It is concluded that the organic products investigated scored as equally well as conventional products with regard to food safety and at the same time show some promising features with respect to antibiotic resistance.
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In 2007 the World Cancer Research Fund and American Institute for Cancer Research (WCRF/AICR) report judged that the evidence for an association between red and processed meat consumption and colorectal cancer was convincing. In addition, the effect of other animal products on cancer risk has been studied, and the WCRF/AICR report concluded that milk probably decreases the risk of colorectal cancer but diets high in calcium probably increase the risk of prostate cancer, whereas there was limited evidence for an association between milk and bladder cancer and insufficient evidence for other cancers. There are several potential mechanisms relating meat to cancer, including heterocyclic amines, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, N-nitroso compounds, and heme iron. Although the evidence in favor of a link between red and processed meat and colorectal cancer is convincing, the relations with other cancers are unclear. In this review, we summarize cohort studies conducted by the National Cancer Institute on meat and dairy intake in relation to cancer since the 2007 WCRF/AICR report. We also report the findings of meta-analyses published since 2007.
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During the 1990s, a number of adverse contamination incidents focussed the attention of the media and the general public on food safety. This led to the evaluation of safety measures with regard to dioxin intake from food. Important aspects regarding dioxins and PCBs in the food chain are reviewed here, allowing a contextual understanding of the present situation through its chronological developments. About 90-98% of the average exposure of humans to dioxins and PCBs results from dietary intake, with food of animal origin being the predominant source. Therefore, animal feed contributes considerably to the presence of these compounds in food. The detection of the "real" source of a contamination event in the food chain is a complex scientific problem and requires specific knowledge on production processes and changes of patterns during bioaccumulation. This is demonstrated by complex investigations performed in three studies on two continents to identify the source (e.g. from contamination of cow's milk in Germany, to citrus pulp pellets from Brazil as an ingredient in feed, then to contaminated lime for neutralization and finally to a landfill with residues of vinyl chloride monomer production). This example shows also the substantial economic losses resulting from incidents in the food chain and the consequences to global trade. In 2001, the EU Scientific Committee on Food established a group tolerable weekly intake (TWI) of 14pgWHO-TEQ/kg body weight and concluded that a considerable proportion of the European population would exceed this TWI. On the global level, the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) provides scientific advice to the Codex Alimentarius Commission and therefore contributes to harmonized international food standards. In its evaluation of 2001, JECFA derived a provisional tolerable monthly intake (PTMI) of 70pgTEQ/kg body weight. The sum of the median intake of PCDD/F-TEQ and PCB-TEQ exceeded the PTMI in Western European countries, was in the PTMI range in North America, but lower in Japan and New Zealand. The 90th percentile of PCDD/F-TEQ exceeded the PTMI in Western European countries and North America, the 90th percentile of coplanar PCBs in Western European countries. Therefore, in 2001 the EU Commission developed a strategy to reduce the presence of dioxins and PCBs in the environment and in the food chain. The legislative measures comprised maximum levels and action levels for feed and food, and a Rapid Alert System for detected incidents was introduced. The network of the EU Reference Laboratory and National Reference Laboratories contributes to harmonization within the EU Member States and developed analytical criteria for screening and confirmatory methods for control of feed and food. After all these efforts it is of general interest to see whether these measures had an effect. The 2012 evaluation of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) based on comprehensive monitoring data of 26 European countries shows a general decrease in dietary exposure of dioxins and DL-PCBs between 2002-2004 and 2008-2010, estimated to be between 16.6% and 79.3% for the different population groups. A smaller decrease was observed for NDL-PCBs. The percentage of individuals exposed above the TWI of 14pgTEQ/kg b.w. was estimated to be between 1.0 and 52.9%. Toddlers and other children were the most exposed groups (being at the upper end of these ranges). Fish, meat and dairy products appeared to be the highest contributing food groups to dietary exposure.
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The present study estimated the human daily intake and uptake of organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and toxic trace elements [mercury (Hg), chromium (Cr), cadmium (Cd), and arsenic (As)] due to consumption of fish from Taihu Lake, China, and the associated potential health risks posed by these contaminants. The health risks posed by the contaminants were assessed using a risk quotient of the fish consumption rate to the maximum allowable fish consumption rate considering the contaminants for carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic effect endpoints. The results showed that fish consumption would not pose non-cancer risks. However, some species would cause a cancer risk. Relative risks of the contaminants were calculated to investigate the contaminant which posed the highest risk to humans. As a result, in view of the contaminants for carcinogenic effects, As was the contaminant which posed the highest risk to humans. However, when non-carcinogenic effects of the contaminants were considered, Hg posed the highest risk. The risk caused by PBDEs was negligible. The results demonstrated that traditional contaminants, such as As, Hg, DDTs (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane and its metabolites), and PCBs, require more attention in Taihu Lake than the other target contaminants.
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Abstract Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxin and -furan (PCDD/F) and dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (dl-PCB) exposure from food were estimated using new food consumption data from the recent German food consumption survey (Nationale Verzehrsstudie II, NVS II). Based on these comprehensive data, information on consumption of 545 individual food items by the German population was derived. Concentrations of dioxin-like compounds in food were compiled from the German food monitoring programme (GFMP), the German Dioxin Database, other German authority programmes, European countries authority programmes, and the published literature, covering the years from 2000 to 2010. By multiplication with consumption data, estimates of intake from food were determined. The main food groups contributing most to the intake of the general public are dairy products (including milk), meat and fish (including sea food), followed - due to high consumption - by main group vegetables. Combined intake of PCDD/F and dl-PCB (as toxic equivalents, TEQ) from food was estimated to be 2.11/1.53 pg/kg bw and day and 3.56/2.85 pg/kg bw and day (upper bound/lower bound) for average and high-end consumers, respectively. The estimated intake of average consumers is close to a reference value derived by the Scientific Committee on Food in 2001. Uncertainties in these estimates pertain to the influence of values below the limit of quantification (upper bound/lower bound ratio) and some foods not considered due to lacking contamination data.
Article
Formation of mutagenic heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is one pathway believed to drive the association of colon cancer with meat consumption. Limited data exist on the associations of individual HCAs and PAHs in red or white meat with colon cancer. Analyzing data from a validated meat preparation questionnaire completed by 1062 incident colon cancer cases and 1645 population controls from an ongoing case-control study, risks of colon cancer were estimated using unconditional logistic regression models, comparing the fourth to the first quartile of mutagen estimates derived from a CHARRED based food frequency questionnaire. Total dietary intake of 2-amino-3,8-dimethylimidazo[4,5-f]quinoxaline (MeIQx) [adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 1.87, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.44-2.44, P trend < 0.0001], 2-amino-3,4,8-trimethylimidazo[4,5-f]quinoxaline (DiMeIQx) (aOR = 1.68, 95% CI = 1.29-2.17, P trend = 0.001) and meat-derived mutagenic activity (aOR = 1.77, 95% CI = 1.36-2.30, P trend < 0.0001) were statistically significantly associated with colon cancer risk. Meat type specific analyses revealed statistically significant associations for red meat-derived MeIQx, DiMeIQx, and mutagenic activity but not for the same mutagens derived from white meat. Our study adds evidence supporting red meat-derived, but not white-meat derived HCAs and PAHs, as an important pathway for environmental colon cancer carcinogenesis.
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Forest, savannah and agricultural fires in the tropics and subtropics are sources for wide spread pollution and release many organic substances into air and soil, including persistent organic pollutants, i.e. polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). The significance of this source for the exposure of humans and the environment in Africa towards phenanthrene, fluoranthene, pyrene, benzo(a)pyrene, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin, 1,2,3,4,6,7,8-heptachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin, and octachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin is studied using daily global emissions from vegetation fires observed by satellite and a global multicompartment chemistry-transport model. Near-ground atmospheric concentrations of model-predicted vegetation fire related concentrations of PAHs and PCDDs were in the 10-1000 and 10-5-10-3 pg m-3 ranges, respectively. Vegetation fires in Africa are found to emit 180±25 kg yr-1 of PCDD/Fs. By comparison with observations it is found that fires explain 1-10% of the PCDD (5% of 2,3,7,8- tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin) concentrations in the rural and background atmosphere of sub-Saharan Africa. The contribution of vegetation fires to exposure to PAH is probably > 10%, but cannot be quantified due to lack of knowledge with regard to both emission factors and photochemistry. A sensitivity analysis suggests that the heterogeneous reaction of PAHs with ozone is effectively limiting atmospheric lifetime and long-range transport.
Article
The Cape Verde nesting population of loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) is the third largest population of this species in the world. For conservation purposes, it is essential to determine how these reptiles respond to different types of anthropogenic contaminants. We evaluated the presence of organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in the plasma of adult nesting loggerheads from Boa Vista Island, Cape Verde, and studied the effects of the contaminants on the health status of the turtles using hematological and biochemical parameters. All turtles had detectable levels of non-dioxin like PCBs, whereas dioxin-like congeners (DL-PCBs) were detected in only 30% of the turtles. Packed cell volume decreased with higher concentrations of PCBs, which suggests that PCB exposure could result in anemia in sea turtles. In addition, a negative association between some OCPs and white blood cells (WBC) and thrombocyte estimate was noted. The DDT-metabolite, p,p'-DDE was negatively correlated with the Na/K ratio and, additionally, a number of correlations between certain PAHs and electrolyte balances were found, which suggest that exposure to these environmental contaminants could affect the kidneys and salt glands in sea turtles. Additionally, several correlations were observed between these environmental pollutants (OCPs and PAHs) and enzyme activity (GGT, ALT, ALP and amylase) and serum protein levels, pointing to the possibility that these contaminants could induce adverse metabolic effects in sea turtles. Our results indicate that anthropogenic pollutants are present in the Cape Verde loggerhead turtle nesting population and could exert negative effects on several health parameters. Because of the importance of this loggerhead nesting population, protective regulations at national and international levels as well as international action are necessary for assuring the conservation of this population.
Article
In the frame of the second French Total Diet Study (TDS), the 15+1 EU priority polycyclic aromatics hydrocarbons (PAHs) were analyzed in 725 foodstuffs habitually consumed by the French population, using gas chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry, after pressurized liquid extraction and purification on PS-DVB stationary phase. The highest PAH concentrations recovered in foodstuffs corresponded to the following contributors: chrysene (25.7%), benzo[b]fluoranthene (15.0%) and benz[a]anthracene (9.0%) whereas the lowest concentrations were those of dibenz[a,h]anthracene, 5 methylchrysene and dibenzo[a,h]pyrene (below 2.0%). By food groups, the current highest levels of total PAH were detected in mollusks and crustaceans, followed by the different oil based products. To estimate French population's exposure, contamination data were combined with national individual food consumption data. Mean daily exposure to the sum of benzo[a]pyrene, benz[a]anthracene, chrysene and benzo[b]fluoranthene (PAH4) was estimated to be 1.48ng/kgbw/day in adults and 2.26ng/kgbw/day in children. The main contributors to PAH exposure for adults are fats, bread and dried bread products followed by crustaceans and mollusks. The margin of exposure (MOE) approach indicates that exposure to PAHs through food is not a major health problem for French consumers.
Article
Tissue distribution patterns of organochlorine pesticides in bovine carcasses varied significantly among seasons, geographic locations and tissues. The highest concentrations of Σ-DDT during the dry season were detected in lungs from Paso de Ovejas (2,834.90μg/kg lipid) and, during the rainy season, Lindane and Σ-HCH in muscle and lung samples from Paso de Ovejas (995.80 and 1,690.10μg/kg lipid). Estimated daily intakes of γ-HCH and Σ-DDT (3.35 and 1.22μg/kg bw/day) through consumption of muscle tissues from Paso de Ovejas and Puente Nacional during the rainy season showed the highest contribution. During the rainy season the highest non-cancer Hazard Ratios estimated corresponded to γ-HCH (3.97) and Σ-DDT (4.39) detected in muscle samples from Puente Nacional. The highest Hazard Ratios of cancer risk to the 95th centile daily consumption through meat corresponded to p,p'-DDT from Alvarado (7.76E+06) and from Paso de Ovejas for γ-HCH (1.50E+05) during rainy season. The results indicate potential non- and carcinogenic risks to consumer health through meat consumption.
Article
The meat sector in Spain is an important industry. However, traditional consumption is changing as a result of the country's economic crisis and the new structure of households. The objective of the present study was to identify trends in meat consumption in Spain extrapolated to 2016, and the main innovations that should be of interest to firms in the sector. The study was conducted in 2011 using the Delphi method with the participation of 26 experts. The results showed that, while the demand for meat will not vary significantly in amount, it will do so in composition, with chicken replacing beef as the meat of most importance in the shopping basket. In addition, significant growth is expected in certified meat, but the demand for organic meat will not take off. Neither will there be no significant changes in end purchase formats, but there will be a clear trend in consumers' purchasing decision criteria away from price, external appearance and origin towards quality certification and the attributes of the packaging. With respect to end purchase channels, the experts estimate that the current trend will be accentuated with increasing market share for large supermarkets and major distribution brands.
Article
Increasingly, Australians are choosing to consume organically produced food, but only a small percentage consume organic food exclusively, and there is little information in the scientific literature that describes their actual level of intake. In order to provide a more meaningful description of Australian organic consumers the 'Organic Consumption Survey' and 'Organic Food Intake Survey' were conducted online in 2010. The aims were to provide information about the characteristics of regular organic consumers and quantify levels of organic consumption. The majority of participants (n = 318) were female (80.3%), 25-55 years old (80.3%), living in urban areas (61.2%), born in Australia (68.9%) and were in a healthy weight range (55.5%). Organic fruit and vegetables had the highest uptake by organic consumers and meat products the lowest. The majority of participants consumed at least 65% organic food in their diet, including 35% certified organic food. A better understanding of organic consumers may help to serve the long-term interests of the organic industry and other stakeholders of food marketing. Clearer definitions of organic consumers may also inform research evaluating the purported health benefits of organic foods. Copyright © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry.
Article
To assess organochlorine pesticide (OCP) contaminations and its possible adverse health impacts, different food samples were collected from three areas of Cambodia, one of the poorest countries in the world. The ∑OCP concentrations in Kampong Cham, Kratie and Kandal provinces ranged from 1.28 to 188 (median 3.11), 1.06 to 25.1 (5.59) and 2.20 to 103 (20.6) ng g(-1), respectively. The dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethanes (DDTs) were the predominant OCPs and accounted for 62.2% (median) among all foodstuffs. Congener profile analyses suggested that there were new input sources of DDTs and hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs) in Cambodia, particularly in Kandal province. The estimated daily intake of OCPs (330 ng kg(-1)day(-1)) for residents in Kandal province ranked No. 1 among the 13 compared countries or regions. On the basis of 95th percentile concentrations, the carcinogenic hazard ratios (HRs) of most investigated individual OCPs in vegetable and fish in Cambodia exceeding unity. Particularly for α-HCH in vegetable, the 95th HR was as high as 186. The data revealed that there is a great cancer risk for the local residents with life time consumption of OCP contaminated vegetable and fish. To our knowledge, this the first study to evaluate the daily intakes of OCPs in Cambodia.
Article
Based on consumption data statistics, food items from four regions in Sweden were sampled in a so-called market basket study. Food items from five food groups, i.e. fish, meat, dairy products, eggs and fat/oils, were analyzed for persistent organic pollutants (POPs) followed by per capita intake calculations. The highest levels of PCDD/F, PCB, PBDE, HBCD and chlorinated pesticides were found in the fish/fish products. The estimated market basket per capita intake of PCDD/F and dl-PCB was 0.7pg WHO-TEQ kg bw(-1) d(-1) (TEFs from 1998). The intake of ∑PCB was estimated to 4.9 ng kg bw(-1) d(-1) and fish was found to be the major contributor with 64%. The intake of ∑PBDE was found to be 0.7 ng kg bw(-1) d(-1). Fish (38%) and dairy products (31%) were the largest contributors to the total PBDE intake. The intake of HBCD was estimated to 0.14 ng kg bw(-1) d(-1). HBCD mainly came from fish (65%), but also dairy products (24%) and meat (10%) contributed. Also regarding the chlorinated pesticides, fish was found to be the major contributor, with 51% of the ∑DDT coming from fish. The intake of ∑DDT, ∑HCH and HCB was 4.0, 1.0 and 1.1 ng kg bw(-1) d(-1), respectively. Most of the ∑HCH and HCB originate from dairy products (43% and 55%, respectively). This study shows that the levels, and intake, of different POPs from food of animal origin in the market basket of 2005 seem to have decreased since the market basket study in 1999.
Article
Residues of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) were analysed in 70 selected food items from Northwest Russia in 1998-2002. Levels of PCBs ranged from 0.2 to 16ng/g wet weight (ww) in dairy products and fats, 0.2 to 23ng/g ww in meat products, 0.5 to 16ng/g ww in eggs and 0.3 to 30ng/g ww in fish. High levels of DDT (16ng/g ww) were found in locally produced butter from Kola Peninsula, in pork fat from Arkhangels region (10 to 130ng/g ww) and in some fish samples from White Sea and Kargopol region (17 and 30ng/g ww). Findings of low DDE/DDT ratios in many of the studied food items indicated recent contamination to DDTs. Mean levels of sum TEQs(WHO1998) of dioxin-like mono-ortho PCBs: PCBs 105, 118, 156 and 157 (∑mo-PCBs-TEQs(WHO1998)) were highest in dairy products, chicken eggs and fish, with levels of 0.292, 0.245 and 0.254pg/g ww, respectively. The estimated daily intake (EDI) for ∑mo-PCBs-TEQs(WHO1998) was 0.74pg/kgbw/day and in the same range as in Sweden and Denmark. Fish, dairy products, eggs and meat were the main contributors to the EDI of ∑mo-PCBs-TEQs(WHO1998). The EDIs of DDTs, HCHs and HCB were several times higher than in Sweden and Denmark. Consumption of meat and poultry were important sources for intake of DDTs and HCHs, respectively. Contamination of animal feed and agricultural practice were assumed the most important causes for the results in the present study. However, increased control on maximum residue levels in food and feed may have resulted in large changes on levels and patterns of POPs in food in the studied areas.
Article
Organochlorine pesticides (OCs) have been associated with breast cancer development and progression. However, the deleterious mechanisms exerted by these contaminants are yet unclear and need to be further elucidated. In the present study, we investigated the effects of a number of OCs (previously detected in human serum from a Spanish population), individually or in combination, on normal human mammary epithelial cells (HMEC) at concentrations close to those found in human beings. The results obtained after a 96-h exposure indicated that OCs exert a clear cytotoxic effect on these cells at higher concentrations than those found in human beings. DDT-derivative organochlorines (DDT and its metabolites, DDE and DDD) are individually more cytotoxic than non-DDT-derivative organochlorines (aldrin and dieldrin). On the contrary, combinations of non-DDT organochlorines were clearly more cytotoxic than combinations of DDT-derivative organochlorines at concentrations close to those described in human serum. Additionally, transcriptional regulation arrays showed that the exposure of HMEC to an environmentally relevant mixture of OCs (p,p'-DDD plus p,p'-DDE plus o,p'-DDE plus aldrin plus dieldrin) sharply upregulated the expression of a number of protein kinases genes, such as ACVRL1, ALK-1, KIT, ERBB3, and ALK-1 at concentrations close to those detected in human populations. Taken together, these findings show a detrimental effect of OCs on human breast cells and indicate a possible association between exposure to organochlorine pesticide combinations and the induction of transformation processes in human breast cells.
Article
The polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs; also referred to as the polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons or PNAs) are commonly encountered at hazardous waste sites and are often the focus of site remediation activities. However, toxicity criteria are not available for all the PAHs. In the past, EPA has assessed risks posed by mixtures of PAHs by assuming that all carcinogenic PAHs are as potent as benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P), one of the most potent PAHs. The available information on the toxicity of the PAHs suggests that most are considerably less potent than B[a]P and therefore, the EPA approach is likely to overestimate risks. Several approaches have been developed to allow the relative potency of the different PAHs to be considered in a site-specific risk assessment. This paper evaluates these approaches and presents a modified version that we feel more accurately reflects the state of knowledge on the relative potency of these compounds.
Article
To prospectively evaluate relationships of organochlorine pesticides and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) with breast cancer, we conducted a case-control study nested in a cohort using the Columbia, Missouri Breast Cancer Serum Bank. Women donated blood in 1977-87, and during up to 9.5 years follow-up, 105 donors who met the inclusion criteria for the current study were diagnosed with breast cancer. For each case, two controls matched on age and date of blood collection were selected. Five DDT [2,2-bis(p-chlorophenyl)-1,1,1-trichloroethane] analogs, 13 other organochlorine pesticides, and 27 PCBs were measured in serum. Women in the upper three quartiles of hexachlorobenzene were at twice the risk of breast cancer compared to those in the lowest quartile. However, there was no evidence for a dose-response relationship, and the association was limited to women whose blood was collected close to the time of diagnosis. Women with higher serum levels of other organochlorine pesticides and PCBs showed no increased risk of breast cancer overall, although positive associations were suggested for PCB-118 and PCB-138 when blood was collected close to the time of diagnosis. Results of this study do not support a role for organochlorine pesticides and PCBs in breast cancer etiology.
Article
The levels of six polychlorinated biphenyl congeners (PCBs) were evaluated in 55 samples of meat (bovine and pork) and meat products (sausage, hot dog sausage, bologna sausage, canned export meat and salami) from 11 cities of the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, between July and August 2002. PCB congeners were found (in fat basis) in the following rank 52 (5.18 ng/g) > 180 (1.69 ng/g) > 10 (1.35 ng/g) > 28 (1.19 ng/g) >153 (0.47 ng/g) >138 (0.43 ng/g), with a summation SigmaPCB amounting to 10.30 ng/g. Meat products had higher PCB levels than meat. PCB levels in samples followed the rank: mixed meat products > pork meat > bovine meat. These results indicate the presence of PCBs in food samples from Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, but the levels found were well below the maximum level established for animal food products in Brazil (3000 ng/g fat). Only one sample exceeded the maximum level established by the European Community (200 ng/g fat). This is the first paper describing background concentrations of PCBs in meat and meat products from Brazil.
Article
Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are synthetic chemicals that have an intrinsic resistance to natural degradation processes, and are therefore environmentally persistent. The introduction of POPs into the environment from anthropogenic activities resulted in their widespread dispersal and accumulation in soils and water bodies, as well as in human and ecological food chains, where they are known to induce toxic effects. Due to their ubiquity in the environment and lipophilic properties, there is mounting concern over the potential risks of human exposure to POPs. This has led to the establishment of monitoring programs worldwide to determine prevailing levels of POPs in the population and to investigate the adverse health risks associated with background exposure. This article reviews the state of knowledge regarding residual levels of POPs in human adipose tissue worldwide, and highlights research data for POPs in the environment and human maternal adipose tissue in Singapore. Although concentrations are comparable to those observed elsewhere, longer term monitoring of a larger cross section of the population is warranted in order to establish temporal trends and potential risks to human health.
Article
Complex technical mixtures of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) cause liver and thyroid neoplasms in rodents, whereas very few data are available on the carcinogenic potency of single non-dioxinlike (NDL) PCB congeners. In most genotoxicity assays technical PCB mixtures and individual congeners were inactive, suggesting that PCBs act as indirect, nongenotoxic carcinogens. Various mechanisms, including suppression of apoptosis in preneoplastic cells or inhibition of intercellular communication, have been suggested to be active in liver tumor promotion by PCBs. A decrease in thyroid hormone levels after PCB treatment has been suggested to play a role in the development of thyroid neoplasms in rats; however, other mechanisms may also be involved. Results from a chronic carcinogenicity study in rats indicate that not the dose of total PCBs but the total TCDD or toxic equivalents (TEQs) associated with "dioxinlike" (DL) constituents within a technical mixture are mainly if not exclusively responsible for the development of liver neoplasms in female rats. Quantitative comparison reveals almost identical dose-response curves for the total TEQs in various technical PCB mixtures and for TCDD as inducers of hepatic neoplasms in female rats. Tumor promotion experiments have shown, however, that, after initiation with a genotoxic carcinogen, technical PCB mixtures and individual DL-and NDL-PCBs act as liver tumor promoters in rodents. Based on these data, a weak carcinogenic potency of individual NDL-PCB congeners cannot be excluded. In epidemiological studies, increased mortality from cancers of the liver, gallbladder, biliary tract, gastrointestinal tract, and from brain cancer and malignant melanoma were observed in workers exposed to a series of technical PCB mixtures. A significant association between PCB concentrations in adipose tissue and non-Hodgkins lymphoma was found in another study. While in all human studies mixed exposure to DL-and NDL-PCBs occurred, no comprehensive data are available on the relative contribution of NDL-PCBs to the overall external and/or internal PCB exposure in those cohorts.