Concentrations of bisphenol A and parabens in socks for infants and young children in Spain and their hormone-like activities.
Environ Int. 2019 Apr 12 ;127:592-600. Epub 2019 Apr 12. PMID: 30986741
BACKGROUND: Little information is available on the content of bisphenol A (BPA) and other endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) such as parabens in infant textiles and clothes.
OBJECTIVES: 1) To determine the concentrations of BPA and parabens in socks for infants and young children purchased in Spain, 2) to assess the (anti-)estrogenicity and (anti-)androgenicity of extracts from the socks, and 3) to estimate dermal exposure doses to these chemicals.
METHODS: Thirty-two pairs of socks for infants and young children (1-48 months) were purchased from 3 stores in Granada (Spain). Textile material was cut from the foot, toe, and leg of each sock (n = 96 samples) for chemical analysis. Hormone-like activities were determined in foot sections (n = 32 samples) by using the E-Screen assay for (anti-)estrogenicityand PALM luciferase assay for (anti-)androgenicity.
RESULTS: BPA was present in 90.6% of samples at concentrations ranging from<0.70 to 3736 ng/g. BPA levels were around 25-fold higher in socks from store 1, which had a higher cotton content compared to stores 2 and 3. Ethyl-paraben was found in 100% of samples, followed by methyl-paraben (81.0%), and propyl-paraben (43.7%). No butyl-paraben was detected in any sample. Estrogenic activity was detected in 83.3% of socks from store 1 (range = 48.2-6051 pM Eeq/g) but in only three socks from stores 2 and 3. Anti-androgenic activity was detected in six of the 32 socks studied (range = 94.4-2989 μM Proceq/g), all from store 1. Estimated dermal exposure to BPA was higher from socks for children aged 36-48 months (median = 17.6 pg/kg/day), and dermal exposure to parabens was higher from socks for children aged 24-36 months (median = 0.60 pg/kg/day).
DISCUSSION: This is the first report in Europe on the wide presence of BPA and parabens in socks marketed for infants and children. BPA appears to contribute to the hormone-like activity observed in sock extracts.