Exposure to environmental chemicals during periods of renal development from embryogenesis to birth and through childhood can inform critical windows of nephrotoxicity, including changes in childhood blood pressure. This review assessed recent studies that examined the relationship of air pollution, metals, and other organic pollutants with children’s blood pressure outcomes. We restricted this review to peer-reviewed studies published in English between January 2007 and July 2017. We identified a total of 36 articles that estimated associations with childhood blood pressure, of which 14 studies examined the effects of air pollution, 10 examined metals, and 12 examined other organic pollutants including phthalates (n = 4), Bisphenol A (n = 3), polychlorinated biphenols (n = 2), organophosphate pesticides (n = 2), or perfluoroalkyl acids (n = 1). Similar to the established relationship between tobacco smoke exposure and childhood blood pressure, the majority of studies that examined air pollutants, particularly exposure to PM10 and PM2.5, reported associations with increased childhood blood pressure. The literature reported conflicting evidence for metals, and putative evidence of the effects of exposure to phthalates, Bisphenol A, polychlorinated biphenols, and pesticides. Overall, our review underscores the need for additional studies that assess the impact of nephrotoxicant exposure during early life, particularly the perinatal period, and blood pressure in childhood.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-180
Number of pages16
JournalPediatric Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2018


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