Polyfluoroalkyl compounds in pooled sera from children participating in the national health and nutrition examination survey 2001-2002

Kayoko Kato, Antonia M. Calafat, Lee Yang Wong, Amal A. Wanigatunga, Samuel P. Caudill, Larry L. Needham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

81 Scopus citations


To assess exposure of polyfluoroalkyl compounds (PFCs) among children, we measured the concentrations of perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorohexane sulfonic acid, and 8 other PFCs in 24 pooled serum samples. The individual serum samples used to make the pools were collected from U.S. children who were participants in the 2001-2002 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. These children were from three major races/ ethnicities (non-Hispanic blacks, non-Hispanic whites, and Mexican Americans), two age categories (3 - 5 and 6 - 11 years), and both sexes. PFCs were extracted from 100 μL of serum using online solid-phase extraction coupled to isotope dilution high performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry; detection limits ranged from 0.1 to 0.4 ng/mL. In the final ANOVA models, race was the only significant demographic factor, and concentrations appeared to be lower for Mexican Americans than for the other two racial groups. For example, for Mexican American children 6 - 11 years old, the least-squares means (LSM) estimates were 30.45 ng/mL (PFOS) and 6.125 ng/mL (PFOA), while for non-Hispanic white children of the same age group, the LSM estimates were 42.45 ng/mL (PFOS) and 7.575 ng/mL (PFOA). However, after adjusting for the potential underestimation of variance associated with the sampling design, race did not remain a significant factor. Nevertheless, these findings suggest that human exposure to PFCs among the population groups of children examined may differ and stress the importance of identifying the environmental sources and routes of exposure to PFCs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2641-2647
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 1 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry


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