Perfluoroalkyl acids: a review of monitoring and toxicological findings

Toxicol Sci. 2007 Oct;99(2):366-94. doi: 10.1093/toxsci/kfm128. Epub 2007 May 22.


In recent years, human and wildlife monitoring studies have identified perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAA) worldwide. This has led to efforts to better understand the hazards that may be inherent in these compounds, as well as the global distribution of the PFAAs. Much attention has focused on understanding the toxicology of the two most widely known PFAAs, perfluorooctanoic acid, and perfluorooctane sulfate. More recently, research was extended to other PFAAs. There has been substantial progress in understanding additional aspects of the toxicology of these compounds, particularly related to the developmental toxicity, immunotoxicity, hepatotoxicity, and the potential modes of action. This review provides an overview of the recent advances in the toxicology and mode of action for PFAAs, and of the monitoring data now available for the environment, wildlife, and humans. Several avenues of research are proposed that would further our understanding of this class of compounds.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Abnormalities, Drug-Induced / etiology
  • Animals
  • Environmental Monitoring / methods*
  • Female
  • Fetus / drug effects
  • Fluorocarbons / analysis*
  • Fluorocarbons / toxicity*
  • Hormones / blood
  • Humans
  • Immune System / drug effects
  • Liver / drug effects
  • Male


  • Fluorocarbons
  • Hormones