Pesticide exposure of pregnant women in Guadeloupe. Ability of a food frequency questionnaire to estimate blood concentration of chlordecone

Publié le 1 Février 2010
Mis à jour le 10 septembre 2019

CONTEXT: Chlordecone, an environmentally persistent organochlorine insecticide used intensively in banana culture in the French West Indies until 1993, has permanently polluted soils and contaminated foodstuffs. Consumption of contaminated food is the main source of exposure nowadays. We sought to identify main contributors to blood chlordecone concentration (BCC) and to validate an exposure indicator based on food intakes. MATERIAL AND METHODS: We used a food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) completed by a sample of 194 pregnant women to estimate their dietary exposure to chlordecone and compared it to blood levels. In a first approach, chlordecone daily intake was estimated as the product of daily eaten quantity of 214 foodstuffs, multiplied by their chlordecone content, and summed over all items. We then predicted individual blood chlordecone concentration with empirical weight regression models based on frequency of food consumption, and without contamination data. RESULTS: Among the 191 subjects who had BCC determination, 146 (76%) had detectable values and mean BCC was 0.86ng/mL (range < LOD-13.2). Mean per capita dietary intake of chlordecone was estimated at 3.3mug/day (range: 0.1-22.2). Blood chlordecone levels were significantly correlated with food exposure predicted from the empirical weight models (r=0.47, p<0.0001) and, to a lesser extent, with chlordecone intake estimated from food consumption and food contamination data (r=0.20, p=0.007). Main contributors to chlordecone exposure included seafood, root vegetables, and Cucurbitaceous. CONCLUSION: These results show that the Timoun FFQ provides valid estimates of chlordecone exposure. Estimates from empirical weight models correlated better with blood levels of chlordecone than did estimates from the dietary intake assessment.

Auteur : Guldner L, Multigner L, Heraud F, Monfort C, Giusti A, Kadhel P, Cordier S
Environmental research, 2010, vol. 110, n°. 2, p. 146-51