Modification of endocrine active potential by mixtures

Kevin Gaido, Li You, Steve Safe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Wildlife and humans are exposed to a complex mixture of endocrine active chemicals. The activity of a specific chemical in any mixture can be modified through interactions with other components of the mixture. The toxic equivalency factor (TEF) approach for risk assessment was developed for chemicals such as halogenated aromatics that induce their effects through ligand-activated receptors. For persistent halogenated aromatic AhR agonists, this approach has some utility. However, the use of the TEF approach for endocrine active compounds is confounded by the unique tissue- and response-specific activities of these structurally diverse compounds. The term "selective receptor modulator" describes the ability of a natural or synthetic receptor ligand to manifest agonist activity in one tissue or for one response and antagonist activity in other tissues or for another response in the same tissue. Thus, it is possible for chemicals in a mixture to behave in an additive manner for one response and an antagonist manner for another response. A mechanisms-based hazard risk assessment of endocrine active chemical mixtures must account for these multiple variables.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2069-2079
Number of pages11
JournalPure and Applied Chemistry
Issue number11-12
StatePublished - 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)


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