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Urinary Levels of 2,4-D and 3,5,6-Trichloro-2-Pyridinol for Spouses and Children of Pesticide Applicators in the Agricultural Health Study

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Abstract:The Agricultural Health Study (AHS) is a prospective epidemiologic study of pesticide applicators and their spouses in Iowa and North Carolina. Exposure to targeted pesticides, 2,4-D or chlorpyrifos, was measured in conjunction with agricultural applications for a subset of applicators and their families. Urinary biomarker levels were measured in samples collected from applicator spouses and children immediately before and two days after a pesticide application. Questionnaires and observations of pesticide handling activities provided information about work practices, personal protective equipment (PPE) use, and hygiene practices. Forty-one spouses and 12 children provided urine samples in conjunction with one application event. Eight spouses provided additional urine samples associated with a second application event. Geometric mean and geometric standard deviation of urinary 2,4-D concentrations for forty-one spouse measures were 1.3+/-3.µg/L (range < 1-37 µg/L) in pre-application samples and were slightly higher at 1.8+/-4.6 µg/L (range < 1-59 µg/L) in post-application samples. The spouse with the highest post-application concentration used a product containing 2,4-D during the observation period. Geometric mean urinary 2,4-D concentrations for nine child measures were 1.6+/-2.2 µg/L (range < 1-5.3 µg/L) in pre-application samples and were slightly higher at 2.0+/-2.1 µg/L (range < 1-5.9 µg/L) in post-application samples. Geometric mean urinary concentrations of 3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinol (TCP), a chlorpyrifos metabolite, for eight spouse measures were 7.6 +/-1.8 µg/L (range 4.7-18 µg/L) in pre-application samples and were somewhat lower at 4.3+/-1.9 µg/L (range 1.1-8.3 µg/L) in post-application samples. TCP concentrations for three children ranged from 3.3 to 8.5 µg/L in pre-application samples and 1.3 to 5.3 µg/L in post-application samples. Significant associations between spouse and applicator pre- and post-application urinary 2,4-D concentrations were observed. One spouse that handled a product containing 2,4-D had the highest urinary levels. Hygiene factors such as laundering contaminated clothes did not result in significantly higher spouse urinary 2,4-D levels, but some applicator work practices, such as use of protective gloves, did appear to be related to spouse urinary 2,4-D levels.

Although this work was reviewed by EPA and approved for publication, it may not necessarily reflect official Agency policy.
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Citation:Chapa, G., K. W. Thomas, S. M. Gordon, M. Jones, J. Raymer, J. A. Hoppin, and M. Alavanja. Urinary Levels of 2,4-D and 3,5,6-Trichloro-2-Pyridinol for Spouses and Children of Pesticide Applicators in the Agricultural Health Study. Presented at International Society for Exposure Analysis 14th Annual Conference, Philadelphia, PA, October 17-20, 2004.
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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: 10/19/2004
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