The aim of this study was to assess persistent organochlorine pollutant (POP) levels in serum collected from children (11–15 years old) working and sometimes also living at the municipal waste-disposal site in Managua, located at the shore of Lake Managua, and in nonworking children living both nearby and also far away from the waste-disposal site. The influence of fish consumption was further evaluated by assessing POPs levels in serum from young women (15–24 years old) with markedly different patterns of fish consumption from Lake Managua. 2,2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)-1,1,1-trichloro-ethane (4,4′-DDT) and 2,2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)-1,1-dichloro-ethene (4,4′-DDE), γ-hexachlorocyclohexane (γ-HCH), polychlorinated biphenyls, pentachlorophenol, and polychlorobiphenylols were quantified in all samples. In general, the levels observed were higher than those reported in children from developed countries, such as Germany and United States. Toxaphene, aldrin, dieldrin, and ß-HCH could not be identified in any sample. The children working at the waste-disposal site had higher levels of POPs compared with the nonworking reference groups. In children not working, there were also gradients for several POPs, according to vicinity to the waste-disposal site. Moreover, in children, as well as in young women, there were gradients according to fish consumption. The most abundant component was 4,4′-DDE, but at levels still lower than those reported in children from malarious areas with a history of recent or current application of 4,4′-DDT for vector control.
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Vol. 35 • No. 3