Interrelationship between exposure to PCDD/Fs and hypertension in metabolic syndrome in Taiwanese living near a highly contaminated area

Chemosphere. 2010 Nov;81(8):1027-32. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2010.08.050. Epub 2010 Sep 17.


Metabolic syndrome (MetS) consists of a constellation of metabolic abnormalities that confer increased risk of cardiovascular disease. There is a positive correlation between exposure to persistent organic pollutants and MetS. We examine the association between PCDD/Fs and MetS components in 1490 non-diabetic persons living near a highly dioxin-contaminated area. We used factor analysis, with a set of core variables considered central features of MetS and PCDD/Fs, to group similar risk factors. Serum PCDD/Fs were positively and significantly correlated with the number of MetS components. Four risk factors-lipidemia, blood pressure, body size, and glycemia-accounted for 72.6% of the variance in the 10 core factors, and PCDD/Fs were linked to MetS through shared correlations with high blood pressure. After adjusting for confounding factors, we found that diastolic blood pressure (β=0.018; p=0.006), glucose (β=0.013; p=0.046), and waist circumference (β=0.721; p=0.042) significantly increased with increasing serum PCDD/F levels. We found significant trends for associations between metabolic syndrome and serum low-chlorinated PCDD/Fs. The highest quintiles of 2,3,4,7,8-PeCDF, 1,2,3,6,7,8-HxCDF and 2,3,7,8-TCDD had the top three adjusted ORs (95% CI) of 3.5 (1.9-6.3), 2.9 (1.7-4.9) and 2.8 (1.6-4.9), respectively. We also found a slight monotonic relationship between serum PCDD/Fs and the prevalence of MetS, especially when the serum dioxin level was higher than 25.4pg WHO(98)-TEQ(DF)g(-1) lipid (the fourth Quintile). We hypothesize that high-dose exposure to PCDD/Fs is a blood pressure-related factor that raises MetS risk.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Benzofurans / blood*
  • Dibenzofurans, Polychlorinated
  • Environmental Exposure / analysis
  • Environmental Exposure / statistics & numerical data
  • Environmental Pollutants / blood*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / epidemiology*
  • Male
  • Metabolic Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Polychlorinated Dibenzodioxins / analogs & derivatives*
  • Polychlorinated Dibenzodioxins / blood
  • Taiwan / epidemiology


  • Benzofurans
  • Dibenzofurans, Polychlorinated
  • Environmental Pollutants
  • Polychlorinated Dibenzodioxins