Significant Variability in the Developmental Toxicity of Representative Perfluoroalkyl Acids as a Function of Chemical Speciation

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

2 Scopus Citations
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Author(s)

  • Yachen Bai
  • Jing Li
  • Bingsheng Zhou
  • Paul K. S. Lam
  • Chenyan Hu
  • Lianguo Chen

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14904–14916
Journal / PublicationEnvironmental Science and Technology
Volume57
Issue number40
Online published29 Sept 2023
Publication statusPublished - 10 Oct 2023

Abstract

Current toxicological data of perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) are disparate under similar exposure scenarios. To find the cause of the conflicting data, this study examined the influence of chemical speciation on the toxicity of representative PFAAs, including perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorobutane carboxylic acid (PFBA), and perfluorobutanesulfonic acid (PFBS). Zebrafish embryos were acutely exposed to PFAA, PFAA salt, and a pH-negative control, after which the developmental impairment and mechanisms were explored. The results showed that PFAAs were generally more toxic than the corresponding pH control, indicating that the embryonic toxicity of PFAAs was mainly caused by the pollutants themselves. In contrast to the high toxicity of PFAAs, PFAA salts only exhibited mild hazards to zebrafish embryos. Fingerprinting the changes along the thyroidal axis demonstrated distinct modes of endocrine disruption for PFAAs and PFAA salts. Furthermore, biolayer interferometry monitoring found that PFOA and PFBS acids bound more strongly with albumin proteins than did their salts. Accordingly, the acid of PFAAs accumulated significantly higher concentrations than their salt counterparts. The present findings highlight the importance of chemical forms to the outcome of developmental toxicity, calling for the discriminative risk assessment and management of PFAAs and salts. © 2023 American Chemical Society.

Research Area(s)

  • albumin binding, bioaccumulation, chemical speciation, developmental toxicity, perfluoroalkyl acids, thyroidal endocrine disruption

Citation Format(s)

Significant Variability in the Developmental Toxicity of Representative Perfluoroalkyl Acids as a Function of Chemical Speciation. / Bai, Yachen; Wang, Qi; Li, Jing et al.
In: Environmental Science and Technology, Vol. 57, No. 40, 10.10.2023, p. 14904–14916.

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review