Non-occupational exposure to pesticides and health markers in general population in Northern Finland: Differences between sexes
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Background Occupational exposure to pesticides has been reported among general population worldwide. However, little is known about the associations between non-occupational exposure to pesticides, and biological markers of health and their response by sex. Objectives We aimed to assess the associations between non-occupational overall pesticide exposure, length of exposure and specific pesticides reported with 35 biological markers of health representing cardiometabolic, haematological, lung function, sex hormones, liver and kidney function profiles, and vitamin D in Finnish cohort. Methods 31-year cross-sectional examination of the Northern Finland Birth Cohort 1966 provided blood samples for biomarker measurements in 1997–1998. Number of subjects varied between 2361 and 5037 for given exposures and certain outcome associations. Multivariable regression analyses were performed to examine associations between overall pesticide exposure (OPE), length of pesticide exposure in months (PEM), in years (PEY), and specific pesticides use (PEU) or not with cardiometabolic [SBP, DBP, TC, LDL, HDL, triglycerides, fasting glucose, insulin, HOMA-IR, HOMA-B, HOMA-S, hs-CRP], hematological [WBC, RBC, Hb, HCT, MCV, MCH, MCHC, platelets], lung function (FVC, FEV1), sex hormones [luteinizing hormone (LH), testosterone (TT), sex-hormone binding globulin (SHBG)], liver and kidney function profiles [total protein, albumin, globulin, ALP, ALT, GGT, urea, creatinine], and vitamin D adjusting for sex, BMI, socioeconomic position (SEP) and season of pesticide use. Results This cohort study on up to 5037 adults with non-occupational OPE, PEM, PEY and PEU differed by sex and SEP. In regression analyses, all the exposures were positively associated with total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and PEU was negatively associated with high-density lipoprotein cholesterol in females. OPE and PEM were positively associated with haematocrit in females and PEU with platelets in males. PEU was negatively associated with mean corpuscular haemoglobin. OPE and PEM were positively associated with LH in males. OPE was negatively associated with total protein and albumin in males.