Tritan™ copolyester is a novel plastic form from Eastman Company utilizing three main monomers, 1,4-cyclohexanedimethanol (CHDM), dimethyl terephthalate (DMT), and 2,2,4,4-tetramethyl-1,3-cyclobutanediol. Despite Tritan™ has been widely applied for plastic bottles, the effects of long-term exposure to these compounds have seldom been investigated. We investigated chronic effects and endocrine disruption potential of CHDM and terephthalic acid (TPA), main mammalian metabolite formed from DMT, using crustacean Daphnia magna and Moina macrocopa, and freshwater fish (Oryzias latipes). The effects on sex hormone balance and the associated mechanisms were also investigated by use of H295R cells. In chronic toxicity test, D. magna showed significant decrease in reproduction (number of young per female) after exposure to 10 mg/L TPA. In early life stage exposure using O. latipes, significant decrease of juvenile survival and weight were observed in fish exposed to 10 mg/L and ≥1 mg/L CHDM, respectively. Expressions of vtg2 mRNA in fish exposed to CHDM and those of cyp19b, star, cyp17, and cyp19a mRNAs in fish exposed to TPA were significantly up-regulated. The results of H295R cell assay also showed that both chemicals at high concentrations could alter sex hormone production in steroidogenic pathway. The effective concentrations of the tested compounds were several orders of magnitude greater than the concentrations can be detected in ambient waters. Further in vivo and in vitro studies will be needed to investigate the effect of co-polymer on endocrine disruption.
Sol Jang, Kyunghee Ji, Ecotoxicology, Volume 24, Issue 9, pp 1906-1914, November 2015