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Environ Health Perspect; DOI:10.1289/ehp.1409637

Prenatal Triclosan Exposure and Anthropometric Measures including Anogenital Distance in Danish Infants

Tina Harmer Lassen1, Hanne Frederiksen1, Henriette Boye Kyhl2,3, Shanna H. Swan4, Katharina M. Main1, Anna-Maria Andersson1, Dorte Vesterholm Lind5, Steffen Husby2, Christine Wohlfahrt-Veje1, Niels E. Skakkebæk1, and Tina Kold Jensen1,5
Author Affiliations open
1Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen University Hospital, Department of Growth and Reproduction, Copenhagen, Denmark; 2Odense University Hospital, Hans Christian Andersen Children’s Hospital, Odense, Denmark; 3Odense Patient data Exploratory Network (OPEN), Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark; 4Department of Preventive Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, New York, USA; 5Department of Environmental Medicine, Institute of Public Health, University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark

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  • Background: Triclosan (TCS) is widely used as an antibacterial agent in consumer products such as hand soap and toothpaste and human exposure is widespread. TCS is suspected of having endocrine disrupting properties, but few human studies have examined the developmental effects of prenatal TCS exposure.

    Objectives: To prospectively examine associations between prenatal TCS exposure and anthropometric measures at birth and anogenital distance (AGD) at three months of age.

    Methods: Pregnant women from the Odense Child Cohort (n=514) provided urine samples around gestational week 28 (median 28.7 weeks, range 26.4 – 34.0) and urinary TCS concentration was measured by LC-MS/MS. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to examine associations between prenatal TCS exposure and measures of size at birth (birth weight, length, head and abdominal circumference) and AGD at three months of age (median 3.3 months, range 2.3 to 6.7 months) controlling for potential confounders.

    Results: Newborn boys in the highest quartile of prenatal TCS exposure had a 0.7 cm (95% CI: -1.2, -0.1, p=0.01) smaller head circumference compared with boys in the lowest quartile. Additionally in boys, inverse associations of borderline statistical significance between prenatal TCS exposure and abdominal circumference at birth and AGD at three months were observed (p-values <0.10). Prenatal TCS exposure was not significantly associated with any of the outcomes in girls. However, fewer girls had AGD measured and we observed no significant interactions between child sex and prenatal TCS-exposure in anthropometric measures at birth.

    Conclusion: Prenatal TCS-exposure was associated with reduced head and abdominal circumference at birth and reduced AGD at three months of age in boys, although the two latter findings were statistically non-significant. These findings require replication, but are compatible with an anti-androgenic effect of prenatal TCS exposure on fetal growth in boys.

  • This EHP Advance Publication article has been peer-reviewed, revised, and accepted for publication. EHP Advance Publication articles are completely citable using the DOI number assigned to the article. This document will be replaced with the copyedited and formatted version as soon as it is available. Through the DOI number used in the citation, you will be able to access this document at each stage of the publication process.

    Citation: Lassen TH, Frederiksen H, Kyhl HB, Swan SH, Main KM, Andersson AM, Lind DV, Husby S, Wohlfahrt-Veje C, Skakkebæk NE, Jensen TK. Prenatal Triclosan Exposure and Anthropometric Measures including Anogenital Distance in Danish Infants. Environ Health Perspect; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1409637

    Received: 20 December 2014
    Accepted: 12 February 2016
    Advance Publication: 23 February 2016

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