Regional comparison of organophosphate flame retardant (PFR) urinary metabolites and tetrabromobenzoic acid (TBBA) in mother-toddler pairs from California and New Jersey.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

The use of alternative chemical flame retardants in consumer products is increasing as the result of the phase-out of polybrominated diphenyl ethers. Today, the most commonly detected alternatives in residential furniture include the organophosphate flame retardants (PFRs) and the Firemaster (R) 550 mixture (FM550). Urinary levels of dialkyl and diaryl phosphate esters, and 2-ethylhexyl tetrabromobenzoate (EH-TBB) have been used as biomarkers of human exposure to PFRs and FM550, respectively. In a previous study, we demonstrated that toddlers had significantly higher levels of PFRs relative to their mothers in a cohort from New Jersey; however, it is unclear if there are regional differences in exposure. It is possible that exposure to PFRs may be higher in California relative to other US States due to the California flammability standard, as was seen previously observed for PBDEs. In the current study, we examined urinary levels of PFR metabolites and TBBA in 28 mother-child pairs from California, USA, collected in 2015, and compared them with levels measured in our previous study from New Jersey. Urine samples were extracted using solid-phase extraction and analyzed by liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Diphenyl phosphate (DPHP), isopropyl-phenyl phenyl phosphate (ip-PPP), bis(1,3-dichloro-2propyl) phosphate (BDCIPP) and BCIPHIPP conjugates were detected in 100% of mother and child urine samples, while bis(1-chloro-2-propyl) phosphate (BCIPP), tert-butyl-phenyl phenyl phosphate (tb-PPP) and TBBA were detected in < 50% of samples. Interestingly, BCIPHIPP conjugates were detected in 100% of the urine samples, suggesting ubiquitous exposure to the parent compound, tris(1-chloro-2-propyl) phosphate (TCIPP). The current study found significantly higher BDCIPP levels in California toddlers and higher and ip-PPP levels in mothers as compared to the New Jersey cohort, which may be reflective of California's furniture flammability standard. For example, BDCIPP levels in California children were 2.4 times higher than those in New Jersey children. Consistent with our previous work, the current study showed higher PFR and EH-TBB exposure in children, likely due to increased hand-mouth behavior. Children's DPHP and BDCIPP levels, on average, were 5.9 times and 15 times those of their mothers. Positive correlations between paired mothers and their children were shown for DPHP and BCIPHIPP conjugates but not BDCIPP or ip-PPP. In the children, several predictors of hand-mouth behavior were associated with BDCIPP, DPHP and ip-PPP urine levels, but no associations were observed with BCIPHIPP conjugates.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Butt, CM; Hoffman, K; Chen, A; Lorenzo, A; Congleton, J; Stapleton, HM

Published Date

  • September 2016

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 94 /

Start / End Page

  • 627 - 634

PubMed ID

  • 27397928

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC4980246

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1873-6750

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0160-4120

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.envint.2016.06.029


  • eng