Time trend of exposure to dechloranes: Plasma samples of German young adults from the environmental specimen bank collected from 1995 to 2017

2020, Fachzeitschriften

Fromme, Hermann; Thomsen, Cathrine; Aschenbrenner, Bettina; Haug, Line Småstuen; Weber, Till; Kolossa-Gehring, Marike; Völkel, Wolfgang; Schober, Wolfgang
International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health 229 (2020), August 2020, 113593; online 12. August 2020


Dechloranes, like Dechlorane Plus® are commonly used flame retardants identified by the EU as substances of very high concern (SVHC) because of their persistence and bioaccumulation potential. To characterize the dechlorane exposure of Germans in the last two decades, 180 archived blood plasma samples of the German Environmental Specimen Bank (students aged 20–29 years) collected at six time points between 1995 and 2017 were analyzed for four dechloranes; namely Dechlorane Plus® (syn- and anti-DDC-CO), dechlorane 602 (DDC-DBF), and dechlorane 603 (DDC-Ant). These were quantified using a GC-MS/MS method.

Overall, anti- and syn-DDC-CO were detected in 88% and 98% of the samples, whereas DDC-DBF and DDC-Ant were found in 40% and 37% of the samples, respectively. The median (95th percentile) values were 1.0 ng/g lipid weight (l.w.) (3.0 ng/g l.w.). for anti-DDC-CO, 0.6 ng/g l.w (1.9 ng/g l.w.). for syn–DDC-CO, 0.1 ng/g l.w (0.6 ng/g l.w.). for DDC-DBF, and 0.1 ng/g l.w (0.2 ng/g l.w.). for DDC-Ant. The 95th percentile concentrations of the sum of syn- and anti-DDC-CO decreased from 4.2 ng/g l.w. in 1995, to 2.9 ng/g l.w. in 1999, and subsequently increased to 3.7 ng/g l.w. in 2008, and up to 5.9 ng/g l.w. in 2017. A statistically significant decrease with time was observed for DDC-DBF and DDC-Ant, but not for DDC-CO.

Our medians found in blood samples in 2017 are similar to those observed in Germany in 2013/14, but higher compared to values reported in other European countries. Overall, more toxicological and monitoring data is needed to better characterize the potential impact on health.

doi: 10.1016/j.ijheh.2020.113593