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Table 3 Studies of parental exposures to glyphosate and reproductive outcomes other than birth defects

From: Glyphosate and adverse pregnancy outcomes, a systematic review of observational studies

Study Study type, population and location Exposure assessment Reproductive outcome Association with GLY – Statistical Analysis OR (CI 95 %) / CFRa
Savitz et al., 1997 [20] Retrospective cohort study. Ontario Farm Family Health Study (OFFHS), farms likely to be full-time family-run operations were selected based on 1986 Canadian Census of Agriculture. Couples were considered as eligible (telephone interview) based on residence on or near the farm-year-round, and age of female partner (≤44 years old). Among 1898 farm couples with completed questionnaires (from farm operator, husband and wife), 3984 pregnancies were identified. Paternal exposure assessed by questionnaire interview. Men were asked about their farm activities over the past 5 years. Five activities were presumed to involve direct pesticide exposure: mixing or applying crop herbicides, insecticides, and fungicides, yard herbicides, livestock chemicals and building pesticides. Male partners engaged in any activity associated with direct pesticide exposure for ≥1 month in the time window of 3 months before conception to the time of conception. Abortion 1.5 (0.8-2.7) – adjusted– abortion (crop)
1.4 (0.7-2.8)–adjusted– abortion – (yard)
2.4 (0.8-7.9)–adjusted– pre-term delivery (crop)
0.8 (0.2-2.3)–adjusted- SGA- (crop)
Pre-term delivery
SGA births
Curtis et al., 1999 [21] Retrospective cohort study. OFFHS – same as described above. Only planned pregnancies were selected for the analysis regardless of the pregnancy outcome. Paternal exposure assessed by questionnaire interview. Pesticide used on the farm (monthly use) during the month trying to conceive or at any time during the prior 2 months to capture the time dependent exposure interval that may have affected spermatogenesis (64 days). Fecundability GLY exposure / CFRa : adjusted
Woman activity regardless man activity - 0.61 (0.30-1.26)
Man activity / no woman activity 1.30 (1.071.56) (↑fecundability) Farm pesticide use/no couple activity
1.26(0.94-1.69) No pesticide use/engaged in activities 1.00 (0.91-1.09)
Arbuckle et al., 2001 [22] Retrospective cohort study. OFFHS – same as described above Paternal exposure assessed by questionnaire interview. Male farm activities in the period from 3 months prior to conception through the month of conception were assessed by questionnaire and evaluated in relation to miscarriages, pre-term delivery and SGA births. Abortion 1.7 (1.0-2.9)–pre-conceptional exposure and late abortion (12–19 weeks) 1.1 (0.7-1.9) – pre-conceptional exposure and early abortion (<12 weeks) 1.1 (0.7-1.7) – post-conceptional exposure and abortion at any gestational age.
Sanin et al., 2009 [23] Ecological-type study design. 2004–2005 Outcome was time to pregnancy evaluated by questionnaire interview (How many months have you having sexual intercourse before you became pregnant for the first time?) women were invited to participate if their first pregnancy during the last 5 years and did not take contraceptives the year before becoming pregnant. 2751 women were included in the analysis. 159 women who reported consultation with a physician for fertility problems were excluded from multiple regression and alternative models. Exposure measurement: Five regions of Colombia with different agricultural practices and presence or not of aerial spray for eradication of illicit crops with GLY Time-to-pregnancy Aerial spraying of GLY was not consistently associated with a delayed time to pregnancy.
Sathyanarayana et al. 2010 [24] Multiple regression analysis of birth weight. Pesticide applicators and their spouses enrolled between 1993 and 1997, Iowa and North Caroline US. (2246 women). Exposure assessed by interview and questionnaire Birth weight Mean birth weight ± SD: 3586 ± 546 g.
GLY-associated change in birth weight: 4 g, −40 to + 48 g. (NS)
  1. CFRa Conditional fecundability ratio, NS non-significant, GLY glyphosate, SGA small for the gestational age. Significant associations are highlighted in bold type. ↑fecundability = increase in fecundability