Abstract Title:

Interaction between organophosphate pesticide exposure and PON1 activity on thyroid function.

Abstract Source:

Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 2010 Aug 5. Epub 2010 Aug 5. PMID: 20691716

Abstract Author(s):

Marina Lacasaña, Inmaculada López-Flores, Miguel Rodríguez-Barranco, Clemente Aguilar-Garduño, Julia Blanco-Muñoz, Oscar Pérez-Méndez, Ricardo Gamboa, Beatriz Gonzalez-Alzaga, Susana Bassol, Mariano E Cebrian

Article Affiliation:

Escuela Andaluza de Salud Pública, Granada, Spain; CIBER de Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), Spain.


Organophosphate pesticides are widely used in agricultural purposes. Recently, a few studies have demonstrated the ability of these chemicals to alter the function of the thyroid gland in human. Moreover, the paraoxonase-1 enzyme (PON1) plays an important role in the toxicity of some organophosphate pesticides, with low PON1 activity being associated with higher pesticide sensitivity. This study evaluates the interaction between exposure to organophosphate compounds and PON1 enzyme activity on serum levels of TSH and thyroid hormones in a population of workers occupationally exposed to pesticides. A longitudinal study was conducted on a population of floriculture workers from Mexico, during two periods of high and low-intensity levels of pesticide application. A structured questionnaire was completed by workers containing questions on sociodemographic characteristics and other variables of interest. Urine and blood samples were taken, and biomarkers of exposure (dialkylphosphates), susceptibility (PON1 polymorphisms and activity) and effect (thyroid hormone levels) were determined. Interaction between dialkylphosphates and PON1 polymorphisms or PON1 activity on hormone levels was evaluated by generalized estimating equation (GEE) models. A significant interaction was found between serum diazoxonase activity and total dialkylphosphates (ΣDAP) on TSH levels. Thus, when PON1 activity was increased we observed a decrease in the percentage of variation of TSH level for each increment in one logarithmic unit of the ΣDAP levels. This interaction was also observed with the PON1(192)RR genotype. These results suggest a stronger association between organophosphate pesticides and thyroid function in individuals with lower PON1 activity.

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