Level of Organochlorine Pesticide in Prediabetic and Newly Diagnosed Diabetes Mellitus Patients with Varying Degree of Glucose Intolerance and Insulin Resistance among North Indian Population

Diabetes Metab J. 2021 Jul;45(4):558-568. doi: 10.4093/dmj.2020.0093. Epub 2021 Jan 15.


Background: Organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) exposure may induce an endocrine disruption which may lead to the risk of developing diabetes through alteration and disturbance of glucose metabolism, insulin resistance, and destruction of β-cells. The present study determines the recent trend of OCPs residue in blood samples and their association with the known risk factors responsible for developing the risk of diabetes among the North Indian population.

Methods: Blood sample of 300 patients (100 each of normal glucose tolerance [NGT], prediabetes and newly detected diabetes mellitus [DM]) between the age group of 30 to 70 years were collected. OCPs residue in whole blood samples was analyzed by using gas chromatography equipped with a 63Ni selective electron capture detector.

Results: Significantly higher levels of β-hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH), dieldrin, and p,p'-dichloro-diphenyl-dichloroethylene (DDE) were found in the prediabetes and newly detected DM groups as compared to NGT group. Insulin resistance showed to be significantly positive correlation with β-HCH and dieldrin. Also, fasting and postprandial glucose levels were significantly positively correlated with levels of β-HCH, dieldrin, and p,p'-DDE. Further, when OCPs level was adjusted for age and body mass index (BMI), it was found that β-HCH, dieldrin, and p,p'-DDE levels in blood increases the risk of diabetes by 2.70, 2.83, and 2.55 times respectively. Moreover, when we adjust OCPs level based on BMI categories (BMI <23, ≥23, and ≤25, and >25 kg/m2); β-HCH and p,p'-DDE showed a significant risk of developing newly detected DM with BMI >25 and ≥23 and ≤25 kg/m2.

Conclusion: The OCPs level present in the environment may be responsible for biological, metabolic, and endocrine disruptions within the human body which may increase the risk of developing newly detected DM. Hence, OCPs exposure can play a crucial role in the etiology of diabetes.

Keywords: Body mass index; Diabetes mellitus; Dichlorodiphenyl dichloroethylene; Dieldrin; Hexachlorocyclohexane; Insulin resistance; Prediabetic state.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Glucose Intolerance* / chemically induced
  • Glucose Intolerance* / diagnosis
  • Glucose Intolerance* / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated* / analysis
  • Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated* / toxicity
  • Insulin Resistance*
  • Middle Aged
  • Pesticides* / adverse effects
  • Pesticides* / analysis
  • Prediabetic State* / chemically induced
  • Prediabetic State* / diagnosis
  • Prediabetic State* / epidemiology


  • Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated
  • Pesticides