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Table 7 Effects of various pollutants on ovarian function

From: Environmental pollutants, a possible etiology for premature ovarian insufficiency: a narrative review of animal and human data

References Methods Results
Jefferson et al., 2007 [92] Oral or subcutaneous exposure of neonatal mice to genistein (0.5–50 mg/kg) Early senescence of the ovarian function, multigenerational effect, multi-oocyte follicles from defaults in primordial follicles assembly,ovulation rates and corpora lutea at low doses and anovulation at the highest dose with arguments for disruption of the hypothalamic–pituitary–gonadal axis
Kim and Park, 2012 [94] Review of the effect of phytoestrogens on sexual function Disruption of ovarian function and folliculogenesis. No specification on the consequences on the ovarian reserve
Wang et al., 2014 [91] Rats orally exposed to 50, 100 or 200 mg/kg of soy isoflavones from weaning to sexual maturity and evaluation of the ovarian reserve Alteration of follicular development by inducing apoptosis of granulosa cells via Fas-mediated and Bcl2/Bax-mediated apoptotic pathways.
Hombach-Klonisch et al., 2005 [96] Review of the PAHs Disrupts ovarian function by modulating AhR transcription
Eskenazi et al., 2005 [101] Epidemiological study conducted for 20 years on a city in Italy contaminated with TCDD following an industrial explosion. 616 patients included, impact of TCDD serum levels on age at menopause in 6% nonsignificant risk of menopause occurring earlier with high serum concentrations of TCDD. But the trend for early menopause in the first four quintiles is statistically significant
Shi et al., 2007 [100] Chronic exposure at low doses (0, 1, 5, 50 or 200 ng/kg/week) in female rats to TCDD from in utero life until ovarian senescence Doses from 50 to 200 ng/kg/week:
Follicular depletion and early ovarian senescence, mediated by AhR
Shirota et al., 2006 [104] Oral exposure in female rats to PCB 126 at 0, 1 or 3 μg/kg/day for 2 weeks before mating until birth ovary weight antral follicular atresia in F1 at doses of 3 μg/kg/d. Activation of the AhR system.
Pocar et al., 2012 [105] Exposure of mice to a mixture of PCB 0, 1, 10 or 100 mg/kg/day during pregnancy and lactation PCB level significantly in exposed newborns compared to the controls.
Decrease in ovary weight (p < 0.05),
follicular atresia (p < 0.0001) in the F1 generation only
Perfluorinated compounds
Knox et al., 2011 [108] Cross-sectional study on 25,957 women Start of menopause was earlier by several months in exposed patients
Taylor et al., 2014 [107] Cross-sectional study of the NHANES cohort, 3011 women were studied for the association between exposure to perfluorinated compounds and the age at menopause onset Women with elevated perfluorinated compound serum levels were younger at menopause than women with lower levels.
Peck et al., 2016 [73] Analysis of primordial follicle stock in 133 patients having underwent hysterectomy. Evaluation of behavioral habits using a questionnaire Light to moderate alcohol consumption is associated with a higher follicle count.
Flame retardants
Lefèvre et al., 2016 [111] Exposure of pregnant rats to bromine flame retardants for 2 to 3 weeks 50% in the number of antral and pre-antral follicles = Alteration of folliculogenesis
HMB = 2-hydroxy-4methoxybenzone, anti-UV protector
Nakamura et al., 2015 [113] Rats exposed to different doses of HMB (7–8 per group) from the 6th gestational day until the 23rd postnatal day. Effects on offspring Delayed follicular development in the group receiving the highest dose. Exposure at less than 10,000 ppm of HMB does not seem to be associated with adverse effects on the reproductive system
Ogliari et al., 2013 [112] Pregnant mice exposed daily to diesel products Number of follicles, ovarian reserve
Boekelheide et al., 2004 [109] American review conducted in the context of the National Toxicology Program, reviewing data from five human studies Four studies in favor of an excess risk of POI and one study without excess risk but lacks strength