Concentration of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in household dust from various countries

Andreas Sjödin, Olaf Päpke, Ernest McGahee, Jean François Focant, Richard S. Jones, Tanja Pless-Mulloli, Leisa Maree Leontjew Toms, Thomas Herrmann, Jochen Müller, Larry L. Needham, Donald G. Patterson

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Seven polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) congeners were measured in the particulate fraction (<2 mm) of household dust samples (n = 40), collected in four different countries (Australia, Germany, Great Britain, and United States). Dust samples from Germany contained the lowest concentrations of total PBDEs (median: 74 ng/g, range: 17-550 ng/g dust). Australian dust contained the second lowest concentration (median: 1200 ng/g, range: 500-13,000 ng/g dust). The dust from the United States and Great Britain contained the highest measured amounts of total PBDEs (US median: 4200 ng/g dust, range: 520-29,000 ng/g; Great Britain median: 10,000 ng/g, range: 950-54,000 ng/g). Daily intake of PBDEs has been estimated from published reference values on daily dust intake rates. The highest daily intake of 2,2′,4,4′-tetrabromodiphenyl ether (BDE-47) found was in the United States (<1-330 ng/day) and the lowest was in Germany (<1-2 ng/day). The PBDE congeners present in commercially available pentabromodiphenyl ether were the highest in concentration in the United States, and the congener distribution was similar to that of the technical preparation (i.e., 2,2′,4,4′,5-pentabromodiphenyl ether [BDE-99] was similar in concentration to that of BDE-47). We conclude that further studies are required to investigate human indoor exposure to PBDEs across countries and to determine the risk factors related to indoor design factors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S131-S136
Issue number1 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Aug 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • General Chemistry
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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