Elevated Levels of Organochlorine Pesticides in South Asian Immigrants Are Associated With an Increased Risk of Diabetes.

TitleElevated Levels of Organochlorine Pesticides in South Asian Immigrants Are Associated With an Increased Risk of Diabetes.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsDaniels SI, Chambers JC, Sanchez SS, La Merrill MA, Hubbard AE, Macherone A, McMullin M, Zhang L, Elliott P, Smith MT, Kooner J
JournalJ Endocr Soc
Volume2
Issue8
Pagination832-841
Date Published2018 Aug 01
ISSN2472-1972
Abstract

Objective: Rates of diabetes mellitus are higher in South Asians than in other populations and persist after migration. One unexplored cause may be higher exposure to persistent organic pollutants associated with diabetes in other populations. We compared organochlorine (OC) pesticide concentrations in South Asian immigrants and European whites to determine whether the disease was positively associated with OC pesticides in South Asians.

Research Design and Methods: South Asians of Tamil or Telugu descent (n = 120) and European whites (n = 72) were recruited into the London Life Sciences Population Study cohort. Blood samples as well as biometric, clinical, and survey data were collected. Plasma levels of -dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (DDE), - dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane, -hexachlorohexane (HCH), and polychlorinated biphenyl-118 were analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. South Asian cases and controls were categorized by binary exposure (above vs below the 50th percentile) to perform logistic regression.

Results: Tamils had approximately threefold to ninefold higher levels of OC pesticides, and Telugus had ninefold to 30-fold higher levels compared with European whites. The odds of exposure to -DDE above the 50th percentile was significantly greater in South Asian diabetes cases than in controls (OR: 7.00; 95% CI: 2.22, 22.06). The odds of exposure to -HCH above the 50th percentile was significantly greater in the Tamil cases than in controls (OR: 9.35; 95% CI: 2.43, 35.97).

Conclusions: South Asian immigrants have a higher body burden of OC pesticides than European whites. Diabetes mellitus is associated with higher -DDE and -HCH concentrations in this population. Additional longitudinal studies of South Asian populations should be performed.

DOI10.1210/js.2017-00480
Alternate JournalJ Endocr Soc
PubMed ID30019022
PubMed Central IDPMC6041775
Grant ListG0700931 / / Medical Research Council / United Kingdom
P42 ES004705 / ES / NIEHS NIH HHS / United States
MR/L01632X/1 / / Medical Research Council / United Kingdom
MR/L01341X/1 / / Medical Research Council / United Kingdom
G0601966 / / Medical Research Council / United Kingdom
/ / Wellcome Trust / United Kingdom