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Uptake and elimination of perfluorinated phosphonic acids in the rat



The mono- and di-substituted perfluorinated phosphonic acids (mono-PFPAs and di-PFPAs) are high production volume fluorinated surfactants. Mono-PFPAs have been observed in Canadian surface waters and wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) effluent. The first observation of the di-PFPAs in the environment is reported here, with the observation of the C6/C6 and C6/C8 di-PFPAs in the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) WWTP sludge standard reference material (SRM) 2781. To characterize the risk associated with human exposure to the mono-PFPAs and di-PFPAs, we determined uptake and elimination parameters in the rat. After oral gavage all of the mono-PFPA and di-PFPA congeners were observed in the blood of the dosed animals. Half-lives after intraperitoneal dosing ranged from 0.96 ± 0.11 to 2.8 ± 0.5 days for the mono-PFPAs and 1.8 ± 0.1 to 9.3 ± 1.5 days for the di-PFPAs. These half-lives are of similar magnitude to those for perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS, 8 to 30 days in male rats) and perfluorooctanoate (PFOA, 6 days in male rats and 1 hour in female rats). Both PFOS and PFOA have human half-lives on the order of years, and so the mono-PFPAs and di-PFPAs may also have significant lifetimes in the human body. The analysis of paired whole blood and plasma samples demonstrated that the mono-PFPAs may bind to blood cells underestimating their concentration in plasma and sera samples. The biological fate of the mono-PFPAs and di-PFPAs determined here suggest there is the potential for human exposure and that if exposure does occur, they may be long-lived in the body. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 2010;29:1319–1329. © 2010 SETAC