Title

Early-pregnancy plasma per- and polyfluoroalkyl substance (PFAS) concentrations and hypertensive disorders of pregnancy in the Project Viva cohort

Authors

Emma V. Preston, Department of Environmental Health, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, United States. Electronic address: epreston@hsph.harvard.edu.
Marie-France Hivert, Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse, Department of Population Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute, Boston, MA, United States; Diabetes Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, United States. Electronic address: mhivert@partners.org.
Abby F. Fleisch, Center for Outcomes Research and Evaluation, Maine Medical Center Research Institute, Portland, ME, United States; Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes, Maine Medical Center, Portland, ME, United States. Electronic address: abby.fleisch@mainehealth.org.
Antonia M. Calafat, National Center for Environmental Health, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, United States. Electronic address: aic7@cdc.gov.
Sharon K. Sagiv, Center for Environmental Research and Children's Health (CERCH), School of Public Health, University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, United States. Electronic address: sagiv@berkeley.edu.
Wei Perng, Department of Epidemiology and the Lifecourse Epidemiology of Adiposity and Diabetes (LEAD) Center, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO, United States. Electronic address: wei.perng@cuanschutz.edu.
Sheryl L. Rifas-Shiman, Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse, Department of Population Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute, Boston, MA, United States. Electronic address: sheryl_rifas@harvardpilgrim.org.
Jorge E. Chavarro, Department of Nutrition, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, United States; Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, United States; Channing Division of Network Medicine, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States. Electronic address: jchavarr@hsph.harvard.edu.
Emily Oken, Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse, Department of Population Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute, Boston, MA, United States. Electronic address: emily_oken@harvardpilgrim.org.
Ami R. Zota, Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, Milken Institute School of Public Health, George Washington University, Washington, DC, United States. Electronic address: azota@email.gwu.edu.
Tamarra James-Todd, Department of Environmental Health, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, United States; Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, United States. Electronic address: tjtodd@hsph.harvard.edu.

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

7-1-2022

Journal

Environment international

Volume

165

DOI

10.1016/j.envint.2022.107335

Keywords

Blood pressure; Gestational hypertension; Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy; PFAS; Preeclampsia

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HDP), defined here as hypertensive disorders with onset in pregnancy (i.e., gestational hypertension, preeclampsia, and preeclampsia superimposed on chronic hypertension), affect up to 10% of pregnancies in the United States and are associated with substantial maternal and neonatal morbidity and mortality. Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are associated with adverse cardiometabolic outcomes during pregnancy, but associations between PFAS and HDP are inconsistent and joint effects of PFAS mixtures have not been evaluated. METHODS: We studied 1,558 pregnant individuals from the Project Viva cohort, recruited during 1999-2002. We quantified concentrations of eight PFAS in plasma samples (median 9.7 weeks of gestation). Using clinical records, we calculated trimester-specific mean systolic (SBP) and diastolic (DBP) blood pressure and categorized HDP status [no HDP (normotensive & chronic hypertension), gestational hypertension, preeclampsia]. We estimated associations of individual PFAS with HDP using multinomial logistic regression and estimated associations with blood pressure using linear regression. We used Bayesian kernel machine regression (BKMR) and quantile g-computation to assess joint effects of the PFAS mixture on HDP and blood pressure measures. RESULTS: Four percent of participants developed preeclampsia and 7% developed gestational hypertension. We observed higher odds of gestational hypertension, but not preeclampsia, per doubling of perfluorooctanoate (PFOA) [OR = 1.51 (95% confidence interval: 1.12, 2.03)], perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) [OR = 1.38 (1.04, 1.82)], and perfluorohexane sulfonate [OR = 1.28 (1.06, 1.54)] concentrations. We observed higher mean DBP per doubling of PFOA [2nd trimester (T2): 0.39 mmHg (-0.01, 0.78); 3rd trimester (T3): 0.56 mmHg (0.14, 0.98)] and PFOS [T2: 0.46 mmHg (0.11, 0.82); T3: 0.43 mmHg (0.05, 0.80)]. The PFAS mixture was positively associated with odds of gestational hypertension [75th vs. 50th percentile: OR = 1.14 (95% credible interval:1.03, 1.25), BKMR] and mean DBP [T2 = 0.17 mmHg (-0.06, 0.40); T3 = 0.22 mmHg (-0.03, 0.48), BKMR]. CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that exposure to certain PFAS may increase the odds of gestational hypertension during pregnancy, with potential implications for subsequent maternal and child health outcomes.

Department

Environmental and Occupational Health

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