Isling, Louise Krag1; Boberg, Julie1; Jacobsen, Pernille Rosenskjold1; Mandrup, Karen Riiber2; Petersen, Marta Axelstad1; Christiansen, Sofie1; Vinggaard, Anne Marie3; Taxvig, Camilla1; Kortenkamp, Andreas5; Hass, Ulla1
1 National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark2 Division of Toxicology and Risk Assessment, National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark3 Copenhagen Center for Health Technology, Center, Technical University of Denmark4 Brunel University5 Brunel University
This study examined late-life effects of perinatal exposure of rats to a mixture of endocrine-disrupting contaminants. Four groups of 14 time-mated Wistar rats were exposed by gavage from gestation day 7 to pup day 22 to a mixture of 13 anti-androgenic and estrogenic chemicals including phthalates, pesticides, u.v.-filters, bisphenol A, parabens, and the drug paracetamol. The groups received vehicle (control), a mixture of all 13 chemicals at 150-times (TotalMix150) or 450-times (TotalMix450) high-end human exposure, or 450-times a mixture of nine predominantly anti-androgenic chemicals (AAMix450). Onset of puberty and estrous cyclicity at 9 and 12 months of age were assessed. Few female offspring showed significantly regular estrus cyclicity at 12 months of age in the TotalMix450 and AAMix450 groups compared with controls. In 19-month-old male offspring, epididymal sperm counts were lower than controls, and in ventral prostate an overrepresentation of findings related to hyperplasia was observed in exposed groups compared with controls, particularly in the group dosed with anti-androgens. A higher incidence of pituitary adenoma at 19 months of age was found in males and females in the AAMix450 group. Developmental exposure of rats to the highest dose of a human-relevant mixture of endocrine disrupters induced adverse effects late in life, manifested as earlier female reproductive senescence, reduced sperm counts, higher score for prostate atypical hyperplasia, and higher incidence of pituitary tumors. These delayed effects highlight the need for further studies on the role of endocrine disrupters in hormone-related disorders in aging humans.