Chlorinated Polyfluorinated Ether Sulfonates and Thyroid Hormone Levels in Adults: Isomers of C8 Health Project in China

Qing Qing Li, Jiao Jiao Liu, Fan Su, Yun Ting Zhang, Lu Yin Wu, Chu Chu, Yuanzhong Zhou, Xubo Shen, Shimin Xiong, Sarah Dee Geiger, Zhengmin Min Qian, Stephen Edward McMillin, Guang Hui Dong, Xiao Wen Zeng

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12 Scopus citations


Chlorinated polyfluorinated ether sulfonates (Cl-PFESAs) are one kind of replacement chemistry for perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS). Recent studies have shown that Cl-PFESAs could interfere with thyroid function in animal models. However, epidemiological evidence on the link between Cl-PFESAs and thyroid function remains scarce. In this study, we focused on two representative legacy perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), including PFOS and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), and two PFOS alternatives (6:2 and 8:2 Cl-PFESAs) in the general adult population from a cross-sectional study, the "Isomers of C8 Health Project in China". Three serum thyroid hormones (THs), thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), free triiodothyronine (FT3), and free thyroxine (FT4), were measured. We fitted generalized linear regression, restricted cubic spline regression, and Bayesian kernel machine regression models to assess associations of individual Cl-PFESAs, legacy PFAS, and PFAS mixtures with THs, respectively. We found individual PFAS and their mixtures were nonlinearly associated with THs. The estimated changes of the TSH level (μIU/mL) at the 95th percentile of 6:2 Cl-PFESA and PFOS against the 5th percentile were -0.74 (95% CI: -0.94, -0.54) and -1.18 (95% CI: -1.37, -0.98), respectively. The present study provided epidemiological evidence for the association of 6:2 Cl-PFESA with thyroid hormone levels in the general adult population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry


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