Urinary concentrations of environmental phenols in pregnant women in a pilot study of the National Children's Study.
Environmental phenols are a group of chemicals with widespread uses in consumer and personal care products, food and beverage processing, and in pesticides. We assessed exposure to benzophenone-3, bisphenol A (BPA), triclosan, methyl- and propyl parabens, and 2,4- and 2,5-dichlorophenol or their precursors in 506 pregnant women enrolled in the National Children's Study (NCS) Vanguard Study. We measured the urinary concentrations of the target phenols by using online solid-phase extraction-isotope dilution high performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. NCS women results were compared to those of 524 similar-aged women in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2009-2010, and to 174 pregnant women in NHANES 2005-2010. In the NCS women, we found significant racial/ethnic differences (p<0.05) in regression adjusted mean concentrations of benzophenone-3, triclosan, 2,4- and 2,5-dichlorophenol, but not of BPA. Urinary 2,4- and 2,5-dichlorophenol concentrations were highly correlated (r=0.66, p<0.0001). Except for BPA and triclosan, adjusted mean concentrations were significantly different across the 7 study sites. Education was marginally significant for benzophenone-3, triclosan, propyl paraben, and 2,5-dichlorophenol. Urinary concentrations of target phenols in NCS pregnant women and U.S. women and pregnant women were similar. In NCS pregnant women, race/ethnicity and geographic location determined urinary concentrations of most phenols (except BPA), suggesting differential exposures. NCS Main Study protocols should collect urine biospecimens and information about exposures to environmental phenols.