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Bisphenol-a and Phthalate Esters: Potential Sources of Resin Components in the Everyday Environments of Preschool Children

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Abstract: The Children's Total Exposure to Persistent Pesticides and Other Persistent Organic Pollutants (CTEPP) study examined the aggregate exposures of 257 preschool children to pollutants commonly found in their everyday environments. A primary objective of the CTEPP study was to identify important sources that contribute to the children's exposures in these environments. Participants were recruited randomly from selected homes and day care centers in six North Carolina and six Ohio counties. Monitoring was performed over a 48-hr period at the children's homes and/or day care centers. Samples that were collected included diet, water, air, dust, soil, and surface wipes. The samples were extracted and analyzed by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry for over 50 pollutants including bisphenol-A (BPA) and two phthalate esters, dibutyl phthalate (DBP) and benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP). BPA is an important component of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins frequently used in products such as reusable bottles, digital media, and as protective liners in metal cans. Phthalate esters are commonly used as plasticizers in vinyl products (e.g., floor tiles, children's toys, and carpet backings) and as solvents/fixatives in personal care products. Here we have reported the preliminary results for levels of BPA, DBP, and BBP in multimedia samples collected at homes (n=129) and day care centers (n=13) of 130 North Carolina preschool children. Both phthalate esters were detected (100%) the most often in indoor floor dust samples. BPA was detected (95%) the highest in hand wipe samples. The median levels of BPA, DBP, and BBP measured in homes were 0.2, 0.6 and 0.9 ug/sample (hand wipes), 0.001, 0.3 and 0.05 ug/m3 (indoor air), 0.02, 5.9 and 17 ug/g (indoor carpet dust), and 0.003, 0.09 and 0.07 ug/g (solid food), respectively, after background correction. At day care centers, the median levels of BPA, DBP, and BBP were 0.8, 0.6 and 0.7 ug /sample (hand wipes), 0.001, 0.3 and 0.05 ug/m3 (indoor air), 0.02, 16 and 47 ug/g (indoor carpet dust), and 0.004, 0.09 and 0.07 ug/g (solid food), respectively. These results show that these pollutants are measurable in several media at both homes and day care centers. In addition, the median DBP and BBP levels in indoor carpet dust samples were at least two times greater at day care centers than at homes. The results suggest that these preschool children were potentially exposed to low levels of BPA, DBP, and BBP in their everyday environments.

This work has been funded wholly by the United States Environmental Protection Agency under contract #68-D-99-011 to Battelle. It has been subjected to Agency review and approved for publication.
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Citation:Morgan, M. K., L. S. Sheldon, N. K. Wilson, J. C. Chuang, C. Lyu, C. Croghan, P. A. Jones, and R. C. Fortmann. Bisphenol-a and Phthalate Esters: Potential Sources of Resin Components in the Everyday Environments of Preschool Children. Presented at Region/ORD Emerging Pollutants Workshop, Chicago, IL, August 11-14, 2003.
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Contact: Liz Hope - (919) 541-2785 or hope.elizabeth@epa.gov
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Division: Human Exposure & Atmospheric Sciences Division
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Branch: Exposure Measurements & Analysis Branch
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Product Type: Abstrct/Oral
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Presented: 08/12/2003
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Related Entries:
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Bullet Item Children's Total Exposure to Persistent Pesticides and Other Persistent Organic Pollutants (Ctepp)
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