1999 Progress Report: A Comprehensive Assessment of Sources of Pesticide Contamination, Concentrations in Pathways, and Exposure-prone Behavior

EPA Grant Number: R826709C003
Subproject: this is subproject number 003 , established and managed by the Center Director under grant R826709
(EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).

Center: CECEHDPR - University of California at Berkeley
Center Director: ,
Title: A Comprehensive Assessment of Sources of Pesticide Contamination, Concentrations in Pathways, and Exposure-prone Behavior
Investigators: Eskenazi, Brenda , Bradman, Asa , Lubin, Bert , McKone, Thomas , Meyers, Jim
Current Investigators: Eskenazi, Brenda , McKone, Thomas
Institution: University of California - Berkeley
EPA Project Officer: Callan, Richard
Project Period: January 1, 1998 through January 1, 2002
Project Period Covered by this Report: January 1, 1998 through January 1, 1999
Project Amount: Refer to main center abstract for funding details.
RFA: Centers for Children's Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research (1998) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Children's Health , Health Effects , Health


Environmental Exposures to Children Living in an Agricultural Community.

This component of the study focuses on children's exposures to pesticides, pollens, molds, dusts, and other allergens. Specific activities involve measuring urinary levels of organophosphate pesticide metabolites in approximately 500 pregnant women and their children, and comparing these levels to local pesticide use, including home and agricultural use. Samples for pollen, mold, endotoxin, dust mite, cockroach, and other allergens also will be collected from each home to assess their association with asthma and other respiratory disease. Detailed health and environmental questionnaires will be administered to each participant. We also will collect ambient air samples to assess levels of pollens and mold in the general outdoor environment. For a subset of 104 study participants with children 6 and 24 months old, we will collect environmental samples to measure pesticides in the child's immediate environment. This information will be used to assess specific pesticides children may be exposed to and how exposures may relate to land use and home practices. A small group of children also will be videotaped to develop statistical descriptions of exposure-prone behavior in children, such as hand-to-mouth contact. The ultimate goal of this research is to understand exposure pathways for young children so that effective and age-appropriate interventions can be designed.

Health Effects of Environmental Exposures to Children Living in an Agricultural Community.

The goal of this study is to determine whether there are adverse health consequences to children from exposures to substances that may be in their environment. Specifically, we will determine the relationship between neurodevelopment, growth, and the occurrence of respiratory symptoms and disease, and exposure to pesticides and allergens during the prenatal and/or postnatal periods. Over a 1-year period, we will enroll a cohort of approximately 500 pregnant women who receive care from either of two community clinics, and we will follow their children up until age two. At each medical visit, the child will be measured and weighed to assess growth patterns. Neurobehavioral evaluations also will be conducted during the neonatal period and at ages 6, 12, and 24 months. Incidence of respiratory symptoms and disease will be assessed throughout the study period. Maternal urine samples collected during pregnancy and child urine samples will be measured for organophosphate metabolites. Home dust samples will be obtained during the prenatal period and at 6 and 12 months to measure common asthma-associated environmental antigens and endotoxin. Mothers will be interviewed pre- and postnatally about their habits, demographic characteristics, migration patterns, and work and medical history.

Intervention to Reduce Environmental Exposures to Children Living in an Agricultural Community.

Currently, we are working with our community partners in the Salinas Valley in Monterey County to design and implement an intervention study. Products from this project will include a manual and other educational materials to enable this and other agricultural communities to replicate the project.

Progress Summary:

Our accomplishments to date include:
  • The study instruments (e.g., questionnaire, home walk-through form, food frequency questionnaire) for administration at baseline and at the 26-week visit have been developed, translated, and piloted.

  • The field laboratory protocols have been developed for collecting, shipping, and storing of the biological (urine, blood) and environmental samples (dust for antigens and pesticides).

  • A Burkard sampler for ambient pollen and mold spores has been installed.

  • We have received approval from the human subjects committees at University of California?Berkeley, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Natividad Medical Center.

  • Participant enrollment began at the end of September 1999. To date (January 10, 2000), approximately 120 women have been enrolled; this is on track for the expected total enrollment of 550 women.

  • Ninety-four home visits have been completed.

  • Our first birth occurred on January 31, 2000.

  • We are incorporating a food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) into the 26-week visit. We are fortunate that a co-investigator, Dr. Gladys Block, has received seed money to develop the FFQ on our population of pregnant Hispanic women. The focus group time, piloting of the FFQ, and development of a scanable format, has to be absorbed by the Study.

Obstacles Encountered.

There have been a number of unanticipated changes resulting from the implementation of managed care among our clinical partners in Monterey County. Negotiating and implementing organizational, logistic, and staffing changes delayed initiation of participant enrollment by 7 months. There are no preliminary results to present at this time.

Future Activities:

Our future activities include:
  • Finalizing our procedures for blood, urine, and questionnaire collection during labor and delivery.

  • Developing algorithms to manage and analyze pesticide use data as they become available.

  • Completing instrument review procedures and beginning data entry.

  • Planning environmental sampling campaigns for 6 month olds.

  • Developing neurobehavioral assessment protocols for children 0-12 months.

Journal Articles on this Report : 1 Displayed | Download in RIS Format

Other subproject views: All 14 publications 1 publications in selected types All 1 journal articles
Other center views: All 109 publications 7 publications in selected types All 7 journal articles
Type Citation Sub Project Document Sources
Journal Article Eskenazi B, Bradman A, Castorina R. Exposures of children to organophosphate pesticides and their potential adverse health effects. Environmental Health Perspectives 1999;107(Suppl 3):409-419. R826709 (2001)
R826709 (2002)
R826709C001 (1999)
R826709C001 (2000)
R826709C002 (1999)
R826709C002 (2000)
R826709C003 (1999)
R826709C003 (2000)
  • Full-text from PubMed
  • Abstract from PubMed
  • Associated PubMed link
  • Full-text: Center for Healthy Housing-Full Text PDF
  • Supplemental Keywords:

    environment, children, pesticides, organophosphate, pollen, mold, asthma, endotoxin, behavior, dust, sensitive populations, agriculture, epidemiology, EPA Region 9, California, CA, Monterey County, western., RFA, Health, Scientific Discipline, Toxics, Environmental Chemistry, Health Risk Assessment, pesticides, endocrine disruptors, Risk Assessments, Susceptibility/Sensitive Population/Genetic Susceptibility, Disease & Cumulative Effects, Children's Health, genetic susceptability, Biology, Endocrine Disruptors - Human Health, farmworkers, health effects, pesticide exposure, risk assessment, sensitive populations, metabolites, prenatal exposure, behavioral assessment, biological response, endocrine disrupting chemicals, exposure, children, Human Health Risk Assessment, assessment of exposure, public health, pathways, human exposure, pesticide residues, environmental health hazard, exposure pathways, statistics, agricultural community, disease, organophosphate pesticides, exposure assessment, exposure model

    Progress and Final Reports:

    Original Abstract
  • 1998
  • 2000 Progress Report
  • Final

  • Main Center Abstract and Reports:

    R826709    CECEHDPR - University of California at Berkeley

    Subprojects under this Center: (EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).
    R826709C001 Community Based Intervention to Reduce Pesticide Exposures to Young Children
    R826709C002 The Epidemiological Investigation of the Effects of Pesticide Exposure on Neurodevelopmental, Growth, and Respiratory Health of Farmworker Children
    R826709C003 A Comprehensive Assessment of Sources of Pesticide Contamination, Concentrations in Pathways, and Exposure-prone Behavior