Research Articles Advance Publication
Environ Health Perspect; DOI:10.1289/EHP504
Prenatal Residential Proximity to Agricultural Pesticide Use and IQ in 7-Year-Old Children
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Background: Residential proximity to agricultural pesticide use has been associated with neural tube defects and autism but more subtle outcomes like cognition have not been studied.
Objectives: Evaluate the relationship between prenatal residential proximity to agricultural use of potentially neurotoxic pesticides and neurodevelopment in 7-year old children.
Methods: Participants included mothers and children (n=283) living in the agricultural Salinas Valley of California enrolled in the Center for the Health Assessment of Mothers and Children Of Salinas (CHAMACOS) study. We estimated agricultural pesticide use within one km of maternal residences during pregnancy using a geographic information system, residential location, and California’s comprehensive agricultural Pesticide Use Report data. We used regression models to evaluate prenatal residential proximity to agricultural use of five potentially neurotoxic pesticide groups (organophosphates, carbamates, pyrethroids, neonicotinoids, and manganese fungicides) and five individual organophosphates (acephate, chlorpyrifos, diazinon, malathion and oxydemeton-methyl) and cognition in 7-year old children. All models included prenatal urinary dialkyl phosphate metabolite concentrations.
Results: We observed a decrease of 2.2 points (95% Confidence Interval (CI): -3.9, -0.5) in Full-Scale intelligence quotient (IQ) and 2.9 points (95% CI: -4.4, -1.3) in verbal comprehension for each standard deviation increase in toxicity-weighted use of organophosphate pesticides. In separate models, we observed similar decrements in Full-Scale IQ with each standard deviation increase of use for two organophosphates (acephate and oxydemeton-methyl) and three neurotoxic pesticide groups (pyrethroids, neonicotinoids, and manganese fungicides).
Conclusions: This study identified potential relationships between maternal residential proximity to agricultural use of neurotoxic pesticides and poorer neurodevelopment in children.
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Citation: Gunier RB, Bradman A, Harley KG, Kogut K, Eskenazi B. Prenatal Residential Proximity to Agricultural Pesticide Use and IQ in 7-Year-Old Children. Environ Health Perspect; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/EHP504
Received: 8 January 2016
Revised: 13 May 2016
Accepted: 14 June 2016
Published: 25 July 2016
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This month EHP’s Children’s Health section highlights recent laboratory research about health effects of early-life exposures. By showing causative linkage between specific exposures and various health outcomes in animal models, toxicologists help to confirm associations found in observational human studies. Together, toxicologists and epidemiologists build the scientific evidence base used by risk assessors and regulators to protect children’s health.
Learn more about rigor and transparency in scientific publishing at the 2017 SOT Annual Meeting and ToxExpo, as EHP Editor-in-Chief Sally Perreault Darney chairs and speaks at an Informational Session titled “Addressing Rigor and Transparency in Research and Journal Publication.” At the session, scheduled for Wednesday, March 15, at 5:00 PM in Room CC 314, Sally will talk about interdisciplinary challenges for rigor and reproducibility in environmental health research. More details are available in the SOT 2017 Conference Program.
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