A new article is now available in Environmental Science & Technology describing the exposure of brominated and chlorinated compounds via house hold dust and cat food to cats.

“Cats’ Internal Exposure to Selected Brominated Flame Retardants and Organochlorines Correlated to House Dust and Cat Food”

House dust from 17 Swedish homes and serum from the participating families’ pet cats were collected, and cat food was purchased matching the diet reported. Five brominated flame retardants could be analysed in both the household dust and the cat serum, and BDE-47, BDE-99, BDE-153 and BB-209 could be correlated.

“This is the first time a correlation between cat serum levels and household dust has been established, a finding that supports the hypothesis that dust is a significant exposure route for cats.”

Serum levels were also significantly correlated with concentrations found in cat food for 6-OH-BDE47, 2,4,6-TBP, and BB-209. Surprisingly, in almost all cat serum samples could BB-209 be determined, a compound which has been discontinued in 2000 in Europe. Both dust and cat food can be a contributing source to the exposure, but could not solely explain the levels measured in the cat serum, indicating another exposure pathway. MiSSE will continue the search for the BB-209 source to cats.

DBDPE, the substituting compound for the use of BDE-209 was found in all dust and food samples (median 0.7 pmol/g lw) but was below detection in serum samples, suggesting low or no bioavailability for DBDPE in cats.

The article is available with open access.

The press release from Stockholm University is available in English and Swedish.