Maternal intake of paracetamol during pregnancy and biomarkers of male fecundity in young adult sons

Tina Quist Laursen, Cecilia Høst Ramlau-Hansen, Sandra Søgaard Tøttenborg, Zeyan Liew, Gunnar Toft, Anne Gaml-Sørensen, Karin Sørig Hougaard, Jens Peter Ellekilde Bonde, Andreas Ernst*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Paracetamol is suggested to have endocrine disrupting properties possibly affecting fetal programming of reproductive health that might lead to impaired semen quality and changes in reproductive hormones. In this longitudinal study, we included 1058 young adult men born 1998-2000 into the Danish National Birth Cohort with follow-up at 18-21 years of age. The exposure, maternal intake of paracetamol, was modelled in three ways: dichotomized, trimester-specific, and as duration of exposure categorized into: short (1-2 weeks), medium (3-9 weeks) or long duration (>9 weeks) vs. no intake. Outcomes included semen characteristics, self-measured testis volume, and reproductive hormone levels. We used negative binominal regression to estimate the percentage difference and 95% confidence interval (CI) for each outcome. In total, 547 (48%) sons were prenatally exposed to paracetamol due to maternal intake at least once. Maternal intake of paracetamol during pregnancy was not associated with any of the biomarkers in the dichotomized or trimester-specific exposure models. For duration of exposure, sons of mothers with long duration of maternal intake of paracetamol showed tendencies towards lower semen concentration (-14% [95% CI: -31%; 8%]), a higher proportion of nonprogressive and immotile spermatozoa (8% [95% CI: -4%; 21%]) and higher DNA Fragmentation Index (16% [95% CI: -1%; 36%]) compared to son of mothers with no intake. Maternal intake of paracetamol during pregnancy was not clearly associated with biomarkers of male fecundity in adult sons. However, it cannot be ruled out that long duration of maternal intake of paracetamol might be associated with impaired semen characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108626
JournalReproductive toxicology (Elmsford, N.Y.)
Volume127
Number of pages8
ISSN0890-6238
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2024

Keywords

  • Analgesic
  • endocrine disrupter
  • fetal programming
  • male infertility
  • reproductive health
  • reproductive hormone levels
  • semen characteristics
  • testis volume
  • analgesic
  • Fetal programming

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