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Dhaka, Bangladesh

Kile M.L.,Oregon State University | Faraj J.M.,University of Massachusetts Amherst | Ronnenberg A.G.,University of Massachusetts Amherst | Quamruzzaman Q.,Dhaka Community Hospital Trust | And 4 more authors.
BMC Public Health | Year: 2016

Background: In the Ganges Delta, chronic arsenic poisoning is a health concern affecting millions of people who rely on groundwater as their potable water source. The prevalence of anemia is also high in this region, particularly among women. Moreover, arsenic is known to affect heme synthesis and erythrocytes and the risk of arsenic-induced skin lesions appears to differ by sex. Methods: We conducted a case-control study in 147 arsenic-exposed Bangladeshi women to assess the association between anemia and arsenic-induced skin lesions. Results: We observed that the odds of arsenic-related skin lesions were approximately three times higher among women who were anemic (hemoglobin < 120 g/L) compared to women with normal hemoglobin levels [Odds Ratio (OR) = 3.32, 95 % Confidence Intervals (CI): 1.29, 8.52] after adjusting for arsenic levels in drinking water and other covariates. Furthermore, 75 % of the women with anemia had adequate iron stores (serum ferritin ≥12 μg/L), suggesting that the majority of anemia detected in this population was unrelated to iron depletion. Conclusions: Considering the magnitude of arsenic exposure and prevalence of anemia in Bangladeshi women, additional research is warranted that identifies the causes of anemia so that effective interventions can be implemented while arsenic remediation efforts continue. © 2016 Kile et al.


Mazumdar M.,Boston Childrens Hospital | Mazumdar M.,Harvard University | Valeri L.,Harvard University | Rodrigues E.G.,Boston Childrens Hospital | And 10 more authors.
Birth Defects Research Part A - Clinical and Molecular Teratology | Year: 2015

BACKGROUND: Arsenic induces neural tube defects in many animal models. Additionally, studies have shown that mice with specific genetic defects in folate metabolism and transport are more susceptible to arsenic-induced neural tube defects. We sought to determine whether 14 single-nucleotide polymorphisms in genes involved in folate metabolism modified the effect of exposure to drinking water contaminated with inorganic arsenic and posterior neural tube defect (myelomeningocele) risk. METHODS: Fifty-four mothers of children with myelomeningocele and 55 controls were enrolled through clinical sites in rural Bangladesh in a case-control study of the association between environmental arsenic exposure and risk of myelomeningocele. We assessed participants for level of myelomeningocele, administered questionnaires, conducted biological and environmental sample collection, and performed genotyping. Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry was used to measure inorganic arsenic concentration in drinking water. Candidate single-nucleotide polymorphisms were identified through review of the literature. RESULTS: Drinking water inorganic arsenic concentration was associated with increased risk of myelomeningocele for participants with 4 of the 14 studied single-nucleotide polymorphisms in genes involved in folate metabolism: the AA/AG genotype of rs2236225 (MTHFD1), the GG genotype of rs1051266 (SLC19A1), the TT genotype of rs7560488 (DNMT3A), and the GG genotype of rs3740393 (AS3MT) with adjusted odds ratio of 1.13, 1.31, 1.20, and 1.25 for rs2236225, rs1051266, rs7560488, and rs3740393, respectively. CONCLUSION: Our results support the hypothesis that environmental arsenic exposure increases the risk of myelomeningocele by means of interaction with folate metabolic pathways. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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