Association between levels of serum bisphenol A, a potentially harmful chemical in plastic containers, and carotid artery intima-media thickness in adolescents and young adults

Atherosclerosis. 2015 Aug;241(2):657-63. doi: 10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2015.06.038. Epub 2015 Jun 20.


Objective: Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical produced at high volumes and used widely in food and drink packaging. In adults, elevated BPA concentrations are associated with cardiovascular disease. BPA exposure is plausibly linked to atherosclerosis in adolescents and young adults, but evidence is lacking to date.

Methods: We recruited 886 subjects (12-30 years of age) from a population-based sample of adolescents and young adults based on a mass urine screening to determine the relationship between serum levels of BPA and carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT).

Results: The geometric mean (standard deviation) of concentrations of BPA were 1.72 (5.5) ng/mL After controlling for confounding factors, linear regression analyzes showed a 1-unit increase in natural log BPA was significantly associated with an increase in mean CIMT (mm) (β = 0.005, 95% C.I. = 0.003-0.007, p < 0.001) and other measurement of CIMT (including right and left side of common carotid artery, carotid bulb and internal carotid artery).

Conclusion: Higher serum concentrations of BPA were associated with increased CIMT in this cross-sectional study of adolescents and young adults. Studies to clarify the mechanisms of these associations are needed.

Keywords: Adolescents; Atherosclerosis; Bisphenol-A; Carotid intima-media thickness.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Atherosclerosis / etiology
  • Benzhydryl Compounds / blood*
  • Benzhydryl Compounds / urine
  • Carotid Arteries / drug effects
  • Carotid Arteries / pathology
  • Carotid Intima-Media Thickness*
  • Child
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Phenols / blood*
  • Phenols / urine
  • Plastics
  • Risk Factors
  • Young Adult


  • Benzhydryl Compounds
  • Phenols
  • Plastics
  • bisphenol A