Environmental phenols, bisphenol A (BPA), triclosan (TCS), and benzophenone-3 (BP-3), are known as emerging endocrine-disrupting chemicals; however, their impacts on thyroid hormones and children's neurobehaviors are still unclear.
We aimed to examine the associations of prenatal and childhood exposure to phenols with neonatal thyroid function and childhood behavioral problems aged 10 years.
A total of 386 mother-singleton pairs were included from Sheyang Mini Birth Cohort Study (SMBCS), a longitudinal birth cohort in China. We quantified urinary BPA, TCS and BP-3 concentrations in maternal and 10-year-old children's urine samples using gas chromatography tandem mass spectrometry and thyroid function parameters in cord serum samples. Caregivers completed the Strength and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) for their children at 10 years of age. Multivariable linear regression models and logistic regression models were applied to estimate associations of urinary phenol concentrations with thyroid hormones and risks of children's behavioral problems, respectively.
The median values of urinary BPA, TCS and BP-3 concentrations for pregnant women were 1.75 μg/L, 0.54 μg/L and 0.37 μg/L, while 1.29 μg/L, 6.64 μg/L and 1.39 μg/L for children, respectively. Maternal urinary BPA concentrations were in associations with 1.00% [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.20%, 1.92%] increases in cord serum FT4 concentrations and significantly associated with increased risks of total difficulties [odds ratio (OR): 1.45, 95% CI: 1.07, 1.97], while maternal urinary levels of BP-3 were significantly related to poorer prosocial behaviors (OR: 1.58, 95% CI: 1.04, 2.39) of children at 10 years of age. In sex-stratified analyses, maternal urinary BPA concentrations were related to increased total difficulty subscales only in boys.
The findings indicated that higher prenatal urinary BPA concentrations were associated with increased risks of total difficulties, especially in boys and maternal urinary BP-3 concentrations were related to poorer prosocial behaviors at 10 years.