Peripubertal serum dioxin concentrations and subsequent sperm methylome profiles of young Russian adults

J. Richard Pilsner, Alex Shershebnev, Yulia A. Medvedeva, Alexander Suvorov, Haotian Wu, Andrey Goltsov, Evgeny Loukianov, Tatiana Andreeva, Fedor Gusev, Andrey Manakhov, Luidmila Smigulina, Maria Logacheva, Victoria Shtratnikova, Irina Kuznetsova, Peter Speranskiy-Podobed, Jane S. Burns, Paige L. Williams, Susan Korrick, Mary M. Lee, Evgeny RogaevRuss Hauser, Oleg Sergeyev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The association of exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals in the peripubertal period with subsequent sperm DNA methylation is unknown. Objective: We examined the association of peripubertal serum 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) concentrations with whole-genome bisulfite sequencing (WGBS) of sperm collected in young adulthood. Methods: The Russian Children's Study is a prospective cohort of 516 boys who were enrolled at 8–9 years of age and provided semen samples at 18–19 years of age. WGBS of sperm was conducted to identify differentially methylated regions (DMR) between highest (n = 4) and lowest (n = 4) peripubertal TCDD groups. Results: We found 52 DMRs that distinguished lowest and highest peripubertal serum TCDD concentrations. One of the top scoring networks, “Cellular Assembly and Organization, Cellular Function and Maintenance, Carbohydrate Metabolism” identified estrogen receptor alpha as its central regulator. Conclusion: Findings from our limited sample size suggest that peripubertal environmental exposures are associated with sperm DNA methylation in young adults.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-49
Number of pages10
JournalReproductive Toxicology
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2018


  • DNA methylation
  • Endocrine disrupting chemicals
  • Environmental effects
  • Peripuberty
  • Russian Children's Study
  • Sperm methylome
  • Susceptible window of germ cell development
  • Whole genome bisulfite sequencing


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