Skip to main content

Levels of dioxin-like PCBs in low-volume serum samples of male patients attending fertility clinics

Abstract

An accurate and easy method for the extraction, cleanup, and HRGC-HRMS analysis of dioxin-like PCBs (DL-PCBs) in low-volume serum samples (1 mL) was developed. Serum samples were extracted several times using n-hexane and purified by acid washing. Recovery rates of labeled congeners ranged from 70 to 110 % and the limits of detection were below 1 pg/g on lipid basis. Although human studies are limited and contradictory, several studies have shown that DL-PCBs can have adverse effects on the male reproductive system. In this way, the present method was applied to 21 serum samples of male patients attending fertility clinics. The total levels obtained for the patients ranged from 6.90 to 84.1 pg WHO-TEQ/g lipid, with a mean value of 20.3 pg WHO-TEQ/g lipid. The predominant PCBs (the sum of PCB 118, 156, and 105) contributed 67 % to the mean concentration of total DL-PCBs in the samples analyzed.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2

References

  • Angerer J, Ewers U, Wilhelm M (2007) Human biomonitoring: state of the art. Int J Hyg Environ Health 210:201–228. doi:10.1016/j.ijheh.2007.01.024

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Carlsen E, Giwercman A, Keiding N, Skakkebaek NE (1992) Evidence for decreasing quality of semen during past 50 years. Br Med J 305:609–613

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Chen QX, Jiang XH, Hedgeman E et al (2013) Estimation of age- and sex-specific background human serum concentrations of PCDDs, PCDFs, and PCBs in the UMDES and NHANES populations. Chemosphere 91:817–823. doi:10.1016/j.chemosphere.2013.01.078

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Cok I, Donmez M, Satıroğlu MH et al (2008) Concentrations of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs), polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDFs), and dioxin-like PCBS in adipose tissue of infertile men. Arch Environ Contam Toxicol 55:143–152. doi:10.1007/s00244-007-9094-1

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Consonni D, Sindaco R, Bertazzi PA (2012) Blood levels of dioxins, furans, dioxin-like PCBs, and TEQs in general populations: a review, 1989–2010. Environ Int 44:151–162. doi:10.1016/j.envint.2012.01.004

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Dallinga JW, Moonen EJC, Dumoulin JCM, Evers JLH, Geraedts JPM, Kleinjans JCS (2002) Decreased human semen quality and organochlorine compounds in blood. Hum Reprod 17:1973–1979. doi:10.1093/humrep/17.8.1973

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Department of Health and Human Services (2009) Fourth national report on human exposure to environmental chemicals. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta

    Google Scholar 

  • Esposito M, Serpe FP, Diletti G et al (2014) Serum levels of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, polychlorinated dibenzofurans and polychlorinated biphenyls in a population living in the Naples area, southern Italy. Chemosphere 94:62–69. doi:10.1016/j.chemosphere.2013.09.013

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Grimalt JO, Carrizo D, Garí M, Font-Ribera L, Ribas-Fito N, Torrent M, Sunyer J (2010) An evaluation of the sexual differences in the accumulation of organochlorine compounds in children at birth and at the age of 4 years. Environ Res 110:244–250. doi:10.1016/j.envres.2010.01.005

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Meeker JD, Maity A, Missmer SA et al (2011) Serum concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls in relation to in vitro fertilization outcomes. Environ Health Perspect 119:1010–1016. doi:10.1289/ehp.1002922

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Needham LL, Calafat AM, Barr DB (2007) Uses and issues of biomonitoring. Int J Hyg Environ Health 210:229–238. doi:10.1016/j.ijheh.2006.11.002

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Patterson JDG, Wong L-Y, Turner WE et al (2009) Levels in the U.S. population of those persistent organic pollutants (2003−2004). Included in the Stockholm Convention or in other Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution Agreements. Environ Sci Technol 43:1211–1218. doi:10.1021/es801966w

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Patterson DG Jr, Welch SM, Turner WE, Sjödin A, Focant J-F (2011) Cryogenic zone compression for the measurement of dioxins in human serum by isotope dilution at the attogram level using modulated gas chromatography coupled to high resolution magnetic sector mass spectrometry. J Chromatogr A 1218:3274–3281. doi:10.1016/j.chroma.2010.10.084

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Phillips DL, Pirkle JL, Burse VW, Bernert Jr. JT, Henderson  LO, Needham LL (1989) Chlorinated hydrocarbon levels in human serum: effects of fasting and feeding. Arch Environ Contam Toxicol 18:495--500. doi:10.1007/BF01055015

  • Ronn M, Lind L, van Bavel B, Salihovic S, Michaelsson K, Lind PM (2011) Circulating levels of persistent organic pollutants associate in divergent ways to fat mass measured by DXA in humans. Chemosphere 85:335–343. doi:10.1016/j.chemosphere.2011.06.095

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Rubes J, Selevan SG, Evenson DP et al (2005) Episodic air pollution is associated with increased DNA fragmentation in human sperm without other changes in semen quality. Hum Reprod 20:2776–2783. doi:10.1093/humrep/dei122

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Sharpe RM (2010) Environmental/lifestyle effects on spermatogenesis vol 365. vol 1546. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2009.0206

  • US EPA (2010) Method 1668 C: chlorinated byphenil congeners in water, soil, sediment, biosolid and tissue by HRGC/HRMS. United States Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Water, Office of Science and Technology, Washington, DC

    Google Scholar 

  • van den Berg M, Birnbaum LS, Denison M et al (2006) The 2005 World Health Organization reevaluation of human and mammalian toxic equivalency factors for dioxins and dioxin-like compounds. Toxicol Sci 93:223–241. doi:10.1093/toxsci/kfl055

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • Viso AC, Casteleyn L, Biot P, Eilstein D (2009) Human biomonitoring programmes and activities in the European Union. J Epidemiol Community Health 63:623–624. doi:10.1136/jech.2008.083709

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Wittsiepe J, Fürst P, Schrey P et al (2007) PCDD/F and dioxin-like PCB in human blood and milk from German mothers. Chemosphere 67:S286–S294. doi:10.1016/j.chemosphere.2006.05.118

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Woodruff TJ, Janssen SJ, Guillette LJ, Giudice LC (2010) Environmental impacts on reproductive health and fertility. Cambridge University Press

  • Zubero MB, Ibarluzea JM, Aurrekoetxea JJ et al (2009) Serum levels of polychlorinated dibenzodioxins and dibenzofurans and PCBs in the general population living near an urban waste treatment plant in Biscay, Basque Country. Chemosphere 76:784–791. doi:10.1016/j.chemosphere.2009.04.061

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgments

Support for this work was provided by the CTQ2013-41006-R project from the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (Spain), the PROMETEOII/2014/007 project from the Valencian Community Government (Spain), and the Chair of Human Fertility of the University of Alicante (Spain).

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Julia Moltó.

Ethics declarations

Consent to participate

Each patient provided an informed consent after receiving a detailed explanation of the study and potential consequences and signed an informed consent form.

Additional information

Responsible editor: Hongwen Sun

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Moltó, J., Paul, R., Ortuño, N. et al. Levels of dioxin-like PCBs in low-volume serum samples of male patients attending fertility clinics. Environ Sci Pollut Res 23, 3463–3468 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-015-5571-7

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-015-5571-7

Keywords

  • Human serum
  • Male infertility
  • DL-PCBs
  • HRGC-HRMS
  • Pollutants
  • Analytical method