Determinants of childhood lead exposure in the postleaded petrol era: The Tooth Fairy cohort from Newcastle upon Tyne.

TitleDeterminants of childhood lead exposure in the postleaded petrol era: The Tooth Fairy cohort from Newcastle upon Tyne.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsHodgson S, Manmee C, Dirks W, Shepherd T, Pless-Mulloli T
JournalJ Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol
Volume25
Issue4
Pagination420-6
Date Published07/2015
ISSN1559-064X
Abstract

Lead is an environmental contaminant causing irreversible health effects in children. We used dentine lead levels as a measure of early-life lead exposure and explored determinants of lead exposure in children living in Newcastle upon Tyne, a historically industrialised UK city, in a cohort born since legislation was introduced to remove lead from petrol, paint and water pipes. The "Tooth Fairy study" cohort comprised 69 children aged 5-8 years. We collected upper deciduous incisors from children and questionnaire data from their parents in 2005. We measured lead levels in pre- and postnatal enamel and dentine using laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry, and assessed associations between dentine lead levels and residential, dietary, lifestyle and socio-economic characteristics. Dentine lead levels were low (mean 0.26 μg/g, range 0.06-0.77); however, we observed considerable variability in dentine lead levels within and between children suggestive of differing exposure levels and/or exposure sources across this population. Variables earlier documented to be associated with childhood lead levels were not found to be significant determinants of dentine lead levels in this study. Exposure pathways should continue to be investigated to enable targeted interventions and prevention of lead-induced health impacts in vulnerable populations.

DOI10.1038/jes.2014.79
Alternate JournalJ Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol
PubMed ID25407346