Document Detail

DDT levels in human milk in Hong Kong, 2001-02.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  18640700     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
High levels of p,p'-DDT were detected in Hong Kong breast milk sampled in 1976 and 1985. Monitoring DDT levels in human breast milk in this region is important to identify trends in exposure. As part of the 2002-03 WHO/EURO coordinated exposure study, the concentrations of DDT and its metabolites were determined in 10 pooled milk samples classified by geographic origin and dietary history, comprising milk samples from 238 primiparous mothers giving birth in Hong Kong. Analysis was performed by Gas Chromatography (GC) with electron capture detector and confirmed by GC/Mass Spectrometry. The sum-DDT concentration (range: 0.92-2.05 mg/kg fat) was age-dependent and indicated a decreasing trend since the 1970s. Mothers who recently came from mainland China had higher p,p'-DDT to p,p'-DDE ratios, suggesting a more recent exposure compared to women mainly residing in Hong Kong. The average Hong Kong sum-DDT level (1.50 mg/kg fat) was among the highest of the contemporary levels (range: 0.12-1.97 mg/kg fat; median: 0.40 mg/kg fat) in the 16 countries/regions participating in the 2002-03 WHO/EURO exposure study. This is probably due to the previous extensive DDT exposure and continuing use of DDT in agriculture in mainland China. Despite the apparent decrease of DDT body load over 30 years, the environmental health hazard from DDT contamination in the Pearl River Delta region remains a concern. Measures to eradicate illegal use of DDT in mainland China and regular food monitoring programs are needed in the region. Despite the presence of DDT and other persistent organic pollutants in human breast milk, breastfeeding should continue to be strongly supported for its life-long benefits to infants.
L L Hui; A J Hedley; K Kypke; B J Cowling; E A S Nelson; T W Wong; F X R van Leeuwen; R Malisch
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2008-07-21
Journal Detail:
Title:  Chemosphere     Volume:  73     ISSN:  1879-1298     ISO Abbreviation:  Chemosphere     Publication Date:  2008 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2008-08-04     Completed Date:  2009-02-10     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0320657     Medline TA:  Chemosphere     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  50-5     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Community Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Faculty of Medicine, 5/F, William M.W. Mong Block, 21 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam, Hong Kong.
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MeSH Terms
Breast Feeding
DDT / analysis*,  metabolism
Data Interpretation, Statistical
Environmental Pollutants / analysis*,  metabolism
Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry
Hong Kong
Infant, Newborn
Interviews as Topic
Maternal Exposure
Milk, Human / chemistry*
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Environmental Pollutants; 50-29-3/DDT

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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