Associations of maternal exposure to organophosphate and pyrethroid insecticides and the herbicide 2,4-D with birth outcomes and anogenital distance at 3 months in the Odense Child Cohort

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In Odense Child Cohort (OCC), concentrations of the pesticide metabolites 3-phenoxybenzoic acid (3-PBA), 3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinol (TCPY), 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) and dialkyl phosphates (DAPs) were measured in urine samples collected in gestational week 28 in up to 858 women. Gestational length, birth weight, head and abdominal circumference were obtained from birth records and anogenital distance (AGD) was measured at age three month. We did not find consistent dose-related associations between pesticide metabolite concentrations and birth outcomes or AGD. However, females tended to have shorter abdominal circumference with higher maternal 3-PBA concentrations (β: -0.3 (95% CI: -0.5, -0.003) cm). Further, a non-significant dose-related elongation of AGD in females was seen for 3-PBA (p-trend: 0.14) and diethyl phosphates (p-trend: 0.08). In males, exposure to 2,4-D in the second compared to the first tertile showed a statistically significant shorter AGD (β: -1.55 (-2.81, -0.28) mm). These findings may suggest a weak disturbance of sex-hormone action.

Original languageEnglish
JournalReproductive toxicology (Elmsford, N.Y.)
Pages (from-to)53-62
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2018



  • 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic Acid/toxicity
  • Anal Canal/anatomy & histology
  • Anthropometry
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Genitalia/anatomy & histology
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Maternal Exposure/adverse effects
  • Organophosphates/toxicity
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Outcome
  • Pyrethrins/toxicity

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