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Urinary glyphosate and AMPA levels in a cross-sectional study of postmenopausal women: Associations with organic eating behavior and dietary intake

Authors: Lucia, R.M., Liao, X., Huang, W.-L., Forman, D., Kim, A., Ziogas, A., Norden-Krichmar, T.M., Goodman, D., Alvarez, A., Masunaka, I., Pathak, K.V., McGilvrey, M., Hegde, A.M., Pirrotte, P. and Park, H.L. (2023)


Animal and epidemiologic studies suggest that there may be adverse health effects from exposure to glyphosate, the most highly used pesticide in the world, and its metabolite aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA). Meanwhile, consumption of organic foods (presumably grown free of chemical pesticides) has increased in recent years. However, there have been limited biomonitoring studies assessing the levels of human glyphosate and AMPA exposure in the United States. We examined urinary levels of glyphosate and AMPA in the context of organic eating behavior in a cohort of healthy postmenopausal women residing in Southern California and evaluated associations with demographics, dietary intake, and other lifestyle factors. 338 women provided two first-morning urine samples and at least one paired 24-h dietary recall reporting the previous day's dietary intake. Urinary glyphosate and AMPA were measured using LC-MS/MS. Participants reported on demographic and lifestyle factors via questionnaires. Potential associations were examined between these factors and urinary glyphosate and AMPA concentrations. Glyphosate was detected in 89.9% of urine samples and AMPA in 67.2%. 37.9% of study participants reported often or always eating organic food, 30.2% sometimes, and 32.0% seldom or never. Frequency of organic food consumption was associated with several demographic and lifestyle factors. Frequent organic eaters had significantly lower urinary glyphosate and AMPA levels, but not after adjustment for covariates. Grain consumption was significantly associated with higher urinary glyphosate levels, even among women who reported often or always eating organic grains. Soy protein and alcohol consumption as well as high frequency of eating fast food were associated with higher urinary AMPA levels. In conclusion, in the largest study to date examining paired dietary recall data and measurements of first-void urinary glyphosate and AMPA, the vast majority of subjects sampled had detectable levels, and significant dietary sources in the American diet were identified.


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