Environmental research

Facilitation of adipocyte differentiation of 3T3-L1 cells by debrominated tetrabromobisphenol A compounds detected in Japanese breast milk.

PMID 25863188


Tetrabromobisphenol A (TeBBPA) is widely used type of brominated flame retardant. In this study, we newly synthesized materials for the debrominated congeners, 2,2',6-tribromobisphenol A (TriBBPA), 2,2'-dibromobisphenol A (2,2'-DiBBPA), 2,6-dibromobisphenol A (2,6-DiBBPA), and 2-monobromobisphenol A (MoBBPA) and evaluated the actual extent of contamination with bisphenol A (BPA), TeBBPA and debrominated congeners in Japanese breast milk samples. TriBBPA was detected at higher levels than that of TeBBPA, while DiBBPA and MoBBPA were detected at lower levels than that of TeBBPA. This observation suggested that humans are exposed to debrominated congeners, which might cause adverse effects. Contamination of the congeners in breast milk was concern about risk infant health, having vulnerable defense system. As pilot study by in vitro experiment, we assessed the toxic potency of debrominated congeners by studying their effect on adipocyte differentiation in 3T3-L1 cells. We observed 2,6-DiBBPA, TriBBPA and TeBBPA elevated the lipid accumulation and adipocyte-specific protein 2 expression in a manner dependent on the number of substituted bromines. Moreover, PPARγ transcriptional activities increased in a dose-dependent manner in the presence of 2,6-DiBBPA and TriBBPA as well as TeBBPA. Our study clarified that TeBBPA and its debrominated congeners accumulated in breast milk and the debrominated congeners promoted adipocyte differentiation, showing that a comprehensive evaluation of the influences of these compounds including the debrominated congeners of TeBBPA on health in infants is necessary.