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Time Trends in Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFASs) in California Women: Declining Serum Levels, 2011-2015.


After several decades of widespread use, some per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) were phased-out of use due to concerns raised by their persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic properties. Our objective was to evaluate temporal trends in serum PFAS levels among 1257 middle-aged and older California women (ages 40-94) during a four year period, beginning approximately 5-10 years after these phase-outs began. An online SPE-HPLC-MS/MS was used to measure 10 long-chain PFASs in serum from blood collected cross-sectionally during 2011-2015 from a subset of participants in the California Teachers Study. Results from multivariable linear regression analyses indicated that serum concentrations of nearly all PFASs declined on average 10% to 20% per year. Serum levels of perfluorohexanesulfonic acid (PFHxS) did not significantly decline. With the exception of PFHxS, the downward trend in serum concentrations was evident for all PFASs across all ages, although declines were comparatively steeper among the oldest women. These findings suggest that the phase-out of some common PFASs has resulted in reduced human exposures to them. The lack of a decline for PFHxS suggests that these exposures may be ongoing and underscores the importance of continued biomonitoring and research efforts to elucidate current pathways of exposure.

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