We investigated the association between major persistent organic pollutants (POPs) exposure and chronic kidney disease (CKD) among general adult population of Korea. For this purpose, a subset of the adult population (n = 1276) participated in Korean National Environmental Health Survey (KoNEHS) Cycle 3 (2015–2017) were analyzed for twenty-four POPs in serum, including organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), and were derived for estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) and urinary albumin-to-creatinine ratio (uACR). Multivariable linear regression was conducted to assess the association between POPs exposure and CKD-related parameters including eGFR and uACR. As sensitivity analyses, principal component analysis was conducted. Moreover, the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 1999–2004 data were chosen to compare with the observations of the Korean adults. Approximately 7.7% of the Korean adult population possessed CKD based on either eGFR (<60 ml/min/1.73 m2) or uACR (≥30 mg/g) criteria. Among the POPs that were detected in ≥70% of the subjects, PCB153 (β = −1.61, 95% CI: −2.55, −0.67, P = 0.001) and PCB180 (β = −1.47, 95% CI: −2.53, −0.40, P = 0.007) exhibited significant associations with decreased eGFR, especially in females. In male participants, hexachlorobenzene (HCB) was associated with eGFR (β = −0.79, 95% CI: −1.53, −0.04, P = 0.040). Sex-dependent associations with eGFR were also shown in the PCA model. Moreover, the sex-dependent associations of PCBs were similarly observed in the adult populations of the US NHANES. However, POPs exposure was not associated with uACR, regardless of association model or population. The observed associations of PCBs are supported by several experimental studies reported elsewhere. To our knowledge, it is the first report that suggests significant associations of PCBs and HCB with eGFR among general population, and further validations in other populations are warranted.
- Chronic kidney disease
- Glomerular filtration rate
- Persistent organic pollutants