Does Fluoride Affect Serum Testosterone and Androgen Binding Protein with Age-Specificity? A Population-Based Cross-Sectional Study in Chinese Male Farmers


Many studies have demonstrated that exposure to excess fluoride was associated with a variety of diseases. Little is known about the variation of testosterone (T) levels caused by fluoride exposure. The aim of this study is to explore the association of fluoride exposure and age with serum T and androgen-binding protein (ABP) levels in male farmers. A cross-sectional study was conducted in a county of Henan Province, China, including high fluoride exposure from drinking water villages and control villages. Male farmers aged 18–55 years old who lived in these villages were recruited by cluster sampling and divided into a higher fluoride exposure group (HFG) and a lower fluoride exposure group (LFG) according to the level of urinary fluoride. Levels of T and ABP in serum were measured using chemiluminescence immunoassay (CLIA) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) respectively. Markedly lower T levels were observed in male farmers from the HFG than in those from the LFG (t = 2.496, P < 0.05). Furthermore, younger farmers, 18–29 and 30–39 years old, may be the most likely to have lower T levels when exposed to fluoride (P < 0.05). No significant differences were observed in serum ABP levels in all male farmers between the two groups with different fluoride exposure. These results supported that excess fluoride exposure decreased serum T levels of male farmers with age-specificity.

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We express our sincere thanks to all individuals who volunteered to participate in this study and the numerous doctors and nurses of the Tongxu Center for Disease Prevention and Control. The study was supported by the grant 81072247 from the National Natural Science Foundation of China and grant 13 A330653 from the Education Department of Henan Province, China.

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Correspondence to Yue Ba.

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All procedures were performed in accordance to protocols approved by the Human Investigation Committees at Zhengzhou University.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Duan, L., Zhu, J., Wang, K. et al. Does Fluoride Affect Serum Testosterone and Androgen Binding Protein with Age-Specificity? A Population-Based Cross-Sectional Study in Chinese Male Farmers. Biol Trace Elem Res 174, 294–299 (2016).

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  • Fluorine
  • Male
  • Androgen binding protein
  • Testosterone
  • Age