Melamine exposure in US POPULATION Open Access

Rashid, Fauzia (2013)

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Background: Exposure to melamine and its analogue, cyanuric acid, occurs through a variety of commercial products like housewares, paints, plastic, papers, fabric, inks and many others. The intentional adulteration of pet food and infant formula with melamine has been reported to cause kidney damage, renal failure and death in certain cases. Co-exposures to melamine and cyanuric acid in livestock, pets and laboratory animals have shown higher toxicity compared with melamine and cyanuric acid alone. Melamine exposure remains to be a public health concern because of its tremendous use in daily life and the limited knowledge and understanding of its toxicity in humans. Our study objectives were to describe the population distribution of urinary melamine and cyanuric acid in the general US population, to evaluate their relation and to determine if doses calculated from the urinary values were within the FDA guidelines for exposure. Methods: Data used for this study were collected as a part of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) for the years 2003-2004. Melamine and cyanuric acid were measured in a random 492-person subset of the entire survey maintaining representativeness of the sample to the US population. Three variables (age, sex, and racial/ethnicity) were evaluated for descriptive analysis for both melamine and cyanuric acid outcome and adjusted for urinary creatinine levels. Sex, age and race/ethnicity groups were compared to each other within the group by using the PROC GLM procedure. Statistical significance was established at α= 0.05 significance level. Results: No significant differences in melamine concentrations were observed among age, sex and racial/ethnic groups. However, we did see significantly higher cyanuric acid levels among males as compared to females (p <0.0001). Adjusting for sex, age, race/ethnicity, and urinary creatinine, we found significantly lower melamine concentrations in non-Hispanic blacks as compared to non-Hispanic whites (p=0.0031) and in those younger than 20 years when compared to older participants (p=0.0415). Creatinine adjusted data also showed significantly lower cyanuric acid concentrations in non-Hispanic blacks as compared to non-Hispanic white (p=0.0001). Melamine and cyanuric acid doses were reconstructed by estimating the absorbed doses in our population sample. No significant differences in the doses estimated for sex, age and various race/ethnicity groups were observed. Conclusion: Our findings suggest that male have higher exposure of melamine and cyanuric acid as compared to female population. Our sample population's exposure to melamine and cyanuric acid did not fall within a range of regulatory concern.

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Table of Contents Introduction---------------------------------------------------------------------1 Materials and Methods-----------------------------------------------------------7 Results--------------------------------------------------------------------------9 Discussion-----------------------------------------------------------------------21 References----------------------------------------------------------------------23 Table 1-------------------------------------------------------------------------10 Table 2-------------------------------------------------------------------------11 Table 3-------------------------------------------------------------------------12 Table 4-------------------------------------------------------------------------13 Table 5-------------------------------------------------------------------------17 Table 6-------------------------------------------------------------------------18 Table 7-------------------------------------------------------------------------19 Table 8-------------------------------------------------------------------------20 Figure 1------------------------------------------------------------------------14 Figure 2------------------------------------------------------------------------14 Figure 3------------------------------------------------------------------------15 Figure 4------------------------------------------------------------------------15

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