The Science of Dioxin

October 24, 2016 | Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability

Researchers Claim TCDD Exposure Led to Fewer Boy Babies for Fathers

A paper published in Occupational & Environmental Medicine is reporting that some men exposed to 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-pdioxin (“TCDD”) fathered fewer boy children than those with lower exposures.

The paper, “Sex ratio of the offspring of New Zealand phenoxy herbicide producers exposed to 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin,” was authored by Andrea ’t Mannetje, Amanda Eng, Chris Walls, Evan Dryson, Manolis Kogevinas, Collin Brooks, Dave McLean, Soo Cheng, Allan H Smith, and Neil Pearce, associated with the Centre for Public Health Research at Massey University in Wellington, New Zealand, occupational medicine specialists in Auckland, New Zealand, the Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (“CREAL”) in Barcelona, Spain, the School of Public Health at the University of California, Berkeley, and the Department of Medical Statistics at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

The researchers said that they conducted a study among men and women employed in a New Zealand phenoxy herbicide production plant between 1969 and 1984 to study their offspring sex ratio in relation to their back-calculated TCDD serum concentrations determined in 2007/2008. A total of 127 men and 21 women reported that they had conceived 355 children after starting employment at the plant.

The researchers estimated their TCDD serum concentrations by back calculating to the time of their children’s birth.

They found that the overall sex ratio was 0.55 (197 boys, 158 girls) but that for fathers with serum TCDD concentrations ≥20 pg/g lipid at time of birth, the sex ratio was 0.47.

The researchers concluded that the probability of a male birth “decreased with higher paternal serum TCDD at time of birth,” although they also determined that the sex ratio “was not reduced” for exposed mothers.

For further information, please contact James V. Aiosa, Paul V. Majkowski, Lawrence S. Han, or your regular Rivkin Radler attorney.

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