A suggested bisphenol A metabolite (MBP) interfered with reproductive organ development in the chicken embryo while a human-relevant mixture of phthalate monoesters had no such effects.
J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2020 Jan 17 ;83(2):66-81. Epub 2020 Feb 20. PMID: 32077375
Bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalate diesters are ubiquitous environmental contaminants. While these compounds have been reported as reproductive toxicants, their effects may partially be attributed to metabolites. The aim of this study was to examine reproductive organ development in chicken embryos exposed to the BPA metabolite, 4-methyl-2,4-bis(4-hydroxyphenyl)pent-1-ene (MBP; 100 µg/g egg) or a human-relevant mixture of 4 phthalate monoesters (85 µg/g egg). The mixture was designed within the EU project EDC-MixRisk based upon a negative association with anogenital distance in boys at 21 months of age in a Swedish pregnancy cohort. Chicken embryos were exposedfrom an initial stage of gonad differentiation (embryonic day 4) and dissected two days prior to anticipated hatching (embryonic day 19). No discernible effects were noted on reproductive organs in embryos exposed to the mixture. MBP-treated males exhibited retention of Müllerian ducts and feminization of the left testicle, while MBP-administered females displayed a diminished the left ovary. In the left testicle of MBP-treated males, mRNA expression of female-associated genes was upregulated while the testicular marker gene SOX9 was downregulated, corroborating afeminizing effect by MBP. Our results demonstrate that MBP, but not the phthalate monoester mixture, disrupts both male and female reproductive organ development in an avian embryo model.