Overall and class-specific scores of pesticide residues from fruits and vegetables as a tool to rank intake of pesticide residues in United States: A validation study.
ABSTRACT: Pesticide residues in fruits and vegetables are among the primary sources of pesticide exposure through diet, but the lack of adequate measurements hinder the research on health effects of pesticide residues. Pesticide Residue Burden Score (PRBS) for estimating overall dietary pesticide intake, organochlorine pesticide score (OC-PRBS) and organophosphate pesticide score (OP-PRBS) for estimating organochlorine and organophosphate pesticides-specific intake, respectively, were derived using U.S. Department of Agriculture Pesticide Data Program data and National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) food frequency questionnaire data. We evaluated the performance of these scores by validating the scores against pesticide metabolites measured in urine or serum among 3,679 participants in NHANES using generalized linear regression. The PRBS was positively associated with a score summarizing the ranks of all pesticide metabolites in a linear fashion (p for linear trend <0.001). Furthermore, individuals in the top quintile of this score had urinary pesticide metabolite levels 13.0% (95% CI 8.3%-17.7%) higher than individuals in the lowest quintile. Similarly, we observed significant associations of the OC-PRBS and OP-PRBS with the levels of lipid-adjusted total serum organochlorine pesticides and urinary creatinine-adjusted organophosphate pesticides, respectively. The relative difference (RD) in average pesticide metabolite rank between extreme quintiles was 17.8% (95% CI: 11.1%-24.4%, p for trend <0.001) for the OP-PRBS, whereas the RD was marginally significant at 7.0% (95% CI: -0.5%-14.4%, p for trend 0.07) for the OC-PRBS. The PRBS and OP-PRBS had similar performance when they were derived from fruits and vegetables with high vs. low pesticide residues, respectively (p for trend <0.001 for all associations). The OP-PRBS was associated with all measured organophosphate pesticides, whereas the positive association between OC-PRBS and averaged measured organochlorine pesticide residue rank was primarily driven by hexachlorobenzene. OC-PRBS had better performance when derived from more contaminated fruits and vegetables (p for trend 0.07) than from less contaminated Fruits and vegetables (p for trend 0.63), although neither of the associations achieved statistical significance. The PRBS and the class-specific scores for two major types of pesticides were significantly associated with pesticide biomarkers. These scores can reasonably rank study participants by their pesticide residue exposures from fruits and vegetables in large-scale environmental epidemiological studies.
Project description:We developed a pesticide residue burden score (PRBS) based on a food frequency questionnaire and surveillance data on food pesticide residues to characterize dietary exposure over the past year. In the present study, we evaluated the association of the PRBS with urinary concentrations of pesticide biomarkers. Fruit and vegetable (FV) intake was classified as having high (PRBS?4) or low (PRBS<4) pesticide residues for 90 men from the EARTH study. Two urine samples per man were analyzed for seven biomarkers of organophosphate and pyrethroid insecticides, and the herbicide 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid. We used generalized estimating equations to analyze the association of the PRBS with urinary concentrations of pesticide biomarkers. Urinary concentrations of pesticide biomarkers were positively related to high pesticide FV intake but inversely related to low pesticide FV intake. The molar sum of urinary concentrations of pesticide biomarkers was 21% (95% confidence interval (CI): 2%, 44%) higher for each one serving/day increase in high pesticide FV intake, and 10% (95% CI: 1%, 18%) lower for each one serving/day increase in low pesticide FV intake. Furthermore, intake of high pesticide FVs positively related to most individual urinary biomarkers. Our findings support the usefulness of the PRBS approach to characterize dietary exposure to select pesticides.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The Food Quality Protection Act of 1996, or FQPA, required the Environmental Protection Agency to set allowable levels for pesticides in a way that would "ensure that there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result to infants and children from aggregate exposure to the pesticide chemical residue." The act stipulated that an additional tenfold margin of safety for pesticide risk assessments shall be applied to account for pre- and postnatal toxicity and for any data gaps regarding pesticide exposure and toxicity, unless there are reliable data to demonstrate that a different margin would be safe for infants and children. DISCUSSION:To examine the implementation of the FQPA-mandated additional margin of safety, this analysis reviews 59 pesticide risk assessments published by the EPA between 2011 and 2019. The list includes 12 pesticides used in the largest amount in the U.S.; a group of 35 pesticides detected on fruits and vegetables; and 12 organophosphate pesticides. For the non-organophosphate pesticides reviewed here, the EPA applied an additional children's health safety factor in 13% of acute dietary exposure scenarios and 12% of chronic dietary exposure scenarios. For incidental oral, dermal and inhalation exposures, additional FQPA factors were applied for 15, 31, and 41%, respectively, of the non-organophosphate pesticides, primarily due to data uncertainties. For the organophosphate pesticides as a group, a tenfold children's health safety factor was proposed in 2015. Notably, in 2017 that decision was reversed for chlorpyrifos. CONCLUSIONS:For the majority of pesticides reviewed in this study, the EPA did not apply an additional FQPA safety factor, missing an opportunity to fully use the FQPA authority for protecting children's health.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Evidence is limited that long-term human exposure to organophosphate (OP) pesticides, without poisoning, is associated with adverse peripheral nervous system (PNS) function.<h4>Objective</h4>We investigated associations between OP pesticide use and PNS function by administering PNS tests to 701 male pesticide applicators in the Agricultural Health Study (AHS).<h4>Methods</h4>Participants completed a neurological physical examination (NPx) and electrophysiological tests as well as tests of hand strength, sway speed, and vibrotactile threshold. Self-reported information on lifetime use of 16 OP pesticides was obtained from AHS interviews and a study questionnaire. Associations between pesticide use and measures of PNS function were estimated with linear and logistic regression controlling for age and outcome-specific covariates.<h4>Results</h4>Significantly increased odds ratios (ORs) were observed for associations between ever use of 10 of the 16 OP pesticides and one or more of six NPx outcomes. Most notably, abnormal toe proprioception was significantly associated with ever use of 6 OP pesticides, with ORs ranging from 2.03 to 3.06; monotonic increases in strength of association with increasing use was observed for 3 of the 6 pesticides. Mostly null associations were observed between OP pesticide use and electrophysiological tests, hand strength, sway speed, and vibrotactile threshold.<h4>Conclusions</h4>This study provides some evidence that long-term exposure to OP pesticides is associated with signs of impaired PNS function among pesticide applicators.
Project description:Studies suggested that variants in the ABCB1 gene encoding P-glycoprotein, a xenobiotic transporter, may increase susceptibility to pesticide exposures linked to Parkinson's Disease (PD) risk.To investigate the joint impact of two ABCB1 polymorphisms and pesticide exposures on PD risk.In a population-based case control study, we genotyped ABCB1 gene variants at rs1045642 (c.3435C/T) and rs2032582 (c.2677G/T/A) and assessed occupational exposures to organochlorine (OC) and organophosphorus (OP) pesticides based on self-reported occupational use and record-based ambient workplace exposures for 282 PD cases and 514 controls of European ancestry. We identified active ingredients in self-reported occupational use pesticides from a California database and estimated ambient workplace exposures between 1974 and 1999 employing a geographic information system together with records for state pesticide and land use. With unconditional logistic regression, we estimated marginal and joint contributions for occupational pesticide exposures and ABCB1 variants in PD.For occupationally exposed carriers of homozygous ABCB1 variant genotypes, we estimated odds ratios of 1.89 [95% confidence interval (CI): (0.87, 4.07)] to 3.71 [95% CI: (1.96, 7.02)], with the highest odds ratios estimated for occupationally exposed carriers of homozygous ABCB1 variant genotypes at both SNPs; but we found no multiplicative scale interactions.This study lends support to a previous report that commonly used pesticides, specifically OCs and OPs, and variant ABCB1 genotypes at two polymorphic sites jointly increase risk of PD.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>For years the United States Department of Agriculture's Pesticide Data Program and the United Kingdom's Food Standards Agency have published annual or quarterly data on pesticide residues in foods. Both programs report residues in conventionally grown, organic, and imported foods. The US program has tested about 288,000 food samples since 1992, primarily fruits and vegetables consumed by children. Since 1999 the UK has tested about 72,000 samples of a wider range of foods. These data are vital inputs in tracking trends in pesticide dietary risks.<h4>Methods</h4>The Dietary Risk Index (DRI) system facilitates detailed analyses of US and UK pesticide residue data, trends, and chronic risk distributions. The DRI value for a pesticide is the dietary intake of that pesticide from a single serving of food divided by the pesticide's acceptable daily intake as set by the US Environmental Protection Agency. It can be calculated based on average annual residue concentrations, and on residue levels in individual samples of food. DRI values can be aggregated over multiple pesticides in single foods, and over individual pesticides in multiple foods.<h4>Results</h4>The DRI system provides insights into the levels, trends, and distribution of pesticide dietary risk across most widely consumed foods. By drawing on both US Pesticide Data Program and UK-Food Standards Agency residue data, the DRI is capable of assessing pesticide risks in a significant portion of the global food supply. Substantial reductions in pesticide dietary risks occurred in the early 2000s, primarily from replacement of organophosphate insecticides with seemingly lower-risk neonicotinoids. However, there remain several areas of concern and opportunities to reduce risks. Both herbicide and fungicide dietary risks are rising. Organically grown produce poses risks far lower than corresponding, conventionally grown produce. Risk differences are inconsistent between domestic and imported foods.<h4>Conclusions</h4>The surest ways to markedly reduce pesticide dietary risks are to shift relatively high-risk fruits and vegetables to organic production. For other foods, reducing reliance on pesticides overall, and especially high-risk pesticides, will incrementally lower risks. The DRI system can help focus such efforts and track progress in reducing pesticide dietary risk.
Project description:Nitric oxide synthase (NOS) genes are candidates for Parkinson's disease (PD) because NOS enzymes produce nitric oxide (NO), a pro-oxidant that can damage neurons. Widely used organophosphate (OP) pesticides can induce oxidative stress and are reported to increase PD risk. Additionally, two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from the PON1 (paraoxonase 1) gene influence the ability to metabolize OPs.Here, we investigated contributions of NOS genes and OP pesticides to PD risk, controlling for PON1 status.In 357 incident PD cases and 495 population controls, we investigated eight NOS SNPs and interactions with both household and ambient agricultural OP exposures assessed with geographic information system (GIS).In comparing PD in homozygous variant carriers of NOS2A rs1060826 versus homozygous wild-type or heterozygotes, we estimate an adjusted odds ratio (OR) of 1.51 (95% CI: 0.95, 2.41). When considering interactions between NOS1 rs2682826 and OP exposure from household use, the OR for frequent OP use alone was 1.30 (95% CI: 0.72, 2.34) and for the CT+TT genotype alone was 0.89 (95% CI: 0.58, 1.39), and for frequent OP use combined with the CT+TT genotype the OR was 2.84 (95% CI: 1.49, 5.40) (interaction p-value 0.04). Similar results were seen for ambient OP exposure. Interactions between OP exposure and three other NOS1 SNPs and a genetic risk score combining all NOS1 SNPs reached statistical significance.We found that OP pesticides were more strongly associated with PD among participants with variant genotypes in NOS1, consistent with the importance of oxidative stress-inducing mechanisms. Our data provide evidence for NOS1 modifying PD risk in OP exposed populations.Paul KC, Sinsheimer JS, Rhodes SL, Cockburn M, Bronstein J, Ritz B. 2016. Organophosphate pesticide exposures, nitric oxide synthase gene variants, and gene-pesticide interactions in a case-control study of Parkinson's disease, California (USA). Environ Health Perspect 124:570-577;?http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1408976.
Project description:China has the world's largest tea plantation area in the world. To sustain high yields of the tea, multiple pesticides are used on tea crops to control pests. Organophosphorus (OP) pesticides are among the most widely used types of agricultural pesticides in China. As tea is a significant potential source of exposure to pesticide residues, the public concern has increased in relation to pesticide residues found in tea in China. The aim of the study was to estimate cumulative dietary exposure to OP residues from tea infusion for Chinese tea consumers to determine whether exposure to OP residues from tea infusion is a cause of health concern for tea consumers in China.OP residue data were obtained from the China National Monitoring Program on Food Safety (2013-2014), encompassing 1687 tea samples from 12 provinces. Tea consumption data were obtained from the China National Nutrient and Health Survey (2002), comprising 506 tea consumers aged 15-82 years. The transfer rates of residues from tea leaves into tea infusions were obtained from the literature. The relative potency factor (RPF) approach was used to estimate acute cumulative exposure to 20 OP residues from tea infusion using methamidophos as the index compound. Dietary exposure was calculated in a probabilistic way.For tea consumers, the mean and the 99.9th percentile (P99.9) of cumulative dietary exposure to OP residues from tea infusion equalled 0.08 and 1.08 ?g/kg bw/d. When compared with the acute reference dose (ARfD), 10 ?g/kg bw/d for methamidophos, this accounts for 0.8 and 10.8% of the ARfD.Even when considering OP residues from vegetables, fruits and other foods, there are no health concerns based on acute dietary exposure to OP residues from tea infusion. However, it is necessary to strengthen the management of the OP pesticides used on tea in China to reduce the risk of chronic dietary exposure to OPs from tea infusion.
Project description:Pesticide exposure may be positively associated with depression. Few previous studies have considered the episodic nature of depression or examined individual pesticides.We evaluated associations between pesticide exposure and depression among male private pesticide applicators in the Agricultural Health Study.We analyzed data for 10 pesticide classes and 50 specific pesticides used by 21,208 applicators enrolled in 1993-1997 who completed a follow-up telephone interview in 2005-2010. We divided applicators who reported a physician diagnosis of depression (n = 1,702; 8%) into those who reported a previous diagnosis of depression at enrollment but not follow-up (n = 474; 28%), at both enrollment and follow-up (n = 540; 32%), and at follow-up but not enrollment (n = 688; 40%) and used polytomous logistic regression to estimate odds ratios (ORs) and 95% CIs. We used inverse probability weighting to adjust for potential confounders and to account for the exclusion of 3,315 applicators with missing covariate data and 24,619 who did not complete the follow-up interview.After weighting for potential confounders, missing covariate data, and dropout, ever-use of two pesticide classes, fumigants and organochlorine insecticides, and seven individual pesticides-the fumigants aluminum phosphide and ethylene dibromide; the phenoxy herbicide (2,4,5-trichlorophenoxy)acetic acid (2,4,5-T); the organochlorine insecticide dieldrin; and the organophosphate insecticides diazinon, malathion, and parathion-were all positively associated with depression in each case group, with ORs between 1.1 and 1.9.Our study supports a positive association between pesticide exposure and depression, including associations with several specific pesticides.
Project description:Is consumption of fruits and vegetables with high levels of pesticide residues associated with lower semen quality?Consumption of fruits and vegetables with high levels of pesticide residues was associated with a lower total sperm count and a lower percentage of morphologically normal sperm among men presenting to a fertility clinic.Occupational and environmental exposure to pesticides is associated with lower semen quality. Whether the same is true for exposure through diet is unknown.Men enrolled in the Environment and Reproductive Health (EARTH) Study, an ongoing prospective cohort at an academic medical fertility center. Male partners (n = 155) in subfertile couples provided 338 semen samples during 2007-2012.Semen samples were collected over an 18-month period following diet assessment. Sperm concentration and motility were evaluated by computer-aided semen analysis (CASA). Fruits and vegetables were categorized as containing high or low-to-moderate pesticide residues based on data from the annual United States Department of Agriculture Pesticide Data Program. Linear mixed models were used to analyze the association of fruit and vegetable intake with sperm parameters accounting for within-person correlations across repeat samples while adjusting for potential confounders.Total fruit and vegetable intake was unrelated to semen quality parameters. High pesticide residue fruit and vegetable intake, however, was associated with poorer semen quality. On average, men in highest quartile of high pesticide residue fruit and vegetable intake (?1.5 servings/day) had 49% (95% confidence interval (CI): 31%, 63%) lower total sperm count and 32% (95% CI: 7%, 58%) lower percentage of morphologically normal sperm than men in the lowest quartile of intake (<0.5 servings/day) (P, trend = 0.003 and 0.02, respectively). Low-to-moderate pesticide residue fruit and vegetable intake was associated with a higher percentage of morphologically normal sperm (P, trend = 0.04).Surveillance data, rather than individual pesticide assessment, was used to assess the pesticide residue status of fruits and vegetables. CASA is a useful method for clinical evaluation but may be considered less favorable for accurate semen analysis in the research setting. Owing to the observational nature of the study, confirmation is required by interventional studies as well.To our knowledge, this is the first report on the consumption of fruits and vegetables with high levels of pesticide residue in relation to semen quality. Further confirmation of these findings is warranted.Supported by National Institutes of Health grants ES009718, ES022955, ES000002, P30 DK046200 and Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award T32 DK007703-16. None of the authors has any conflicts of interest to declare.
Project description:This study was carried out to investigate the risks of simultaneous exposure to pesticide residues and bacteria contaminants in locally produced fresh vegetables and vegetables in Tanzania. A total of 613 samples were analyzed for pesticide residues, out of which 250 were also analyzed for bacterial contamination. Overall, 47.5% had pesticide residues, 74.2% exceeded Maximum Residue Levels (MRLs). Organophosphorus (95.2%), organochlorines (24.0%), pyrethroids (17.3%), and carbamates (9.2%) residues dominated. MRL values were mostly exceeded in tomatoes, onions, watermelons, cucumbers, Chinese cabbage, and sweet paper. Tetramethrin (0.0329-1.3733 mg/kg), pirimiphos-methyl (0.0003-1.4093 mg/kg), permethrin (0.0009-2.4537 mg/kg), endosulfan (beta) (0.0008-2.3416 mg/kg), carbaryl (0.0215-1.5068 mg/kg), profenofos (0.0176-2.1377 mg/kg), chlorpyrifos (0.0004-1.2549 mg/kg) and dieldrin (0.0011-0.5271 mg/kg) exceeded MRLs. The prevalence of bacteria contamination was high (63.2%). Enterobacter (55.6%) Pseudomonas aeruginosa (32.4%), E. coli (28.2%), Citrobacter (26.8%), Klebsiella oxytoca (14.8%), and Salmonella (7.7%) were isolated. Furthermore, 46.4% tested positive for both pesticide residues and bacterial contaminants. Vegetables from farms (60.7%) contained more dual contaminants than market-based vegetables (41.8%). This may have resulted from excessive pesticide use and unhygienic handling of fresh fruits and vegetables at production level. Binary logistic regression showed that fresh fruits and vegetables with pesticide residues were 2.231 times more likely to have bacteria contaminants (OR: 2.231; 95% CI: 0.501, 8.802). The contamination levels of pesticide residues and bacterial contaminants could be perceived as a serious problem as most fresh fruits and vegetables recorded values of pesticide residues far above the MRLs with pathogenic bacteria isolated in higher proportions. MRLs was higher in most vegetables consumed raw or semi-cooked such as watermelons, carrots, cucumber, tomatoes, onion and sweet paper. There is an urgent need to develop pesticide monitoring and surveillance systems at farmer level, educating farmers and promoting the use of greener pesticides to mitigate the health effects of pesticides and bacterial contaminants.