Date of Award

Fall 12-2019

Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Advisor/Committee Chair

Lawrence Schell, Ph.D.


One of the most important aspects of science is replication of research studies between different labs. This capability for scientists to check their work, and that of other scientists, leads to research results of interest being well-accepted and qualified. When research studies cannot be replicated under ideal experimental conditions, people can believe results that are not consistent, and the data is not real. The main objective of this study was to examine the variability on the levels of different PCB congeners from various studies and their effects on sexual maturation in adolescent population. The detectable levels of different PCB congeners were examined from different studies and the data was analyzed to see whether these studies can be replicated. An extensive literature search was performed exclusively in humans using PubMed from 01/01/1994 to 09/12/2019 with more defined search terms on PCB congeners. A total of 98 research papers were initially identified and only 18 relevant articles were selected, and the data was analyzed. There were 50 PCB congeners detected from these publications in adolescent population. The prevalence of these congeners varied from each investigation. Of interest is the observation that a highest score of 16 out of 18 was observed for PCB 138, PCB 153 and PCB 180. A total score of 6 out of 18 was detected for PCB 74, PCB 87, PCB 105 and PCB 149. The variability in different levels of PCB congeners may be due to many factors such as different exposure, duration, doses and methods employed for analysis. Further investigation is needed to generate a database on more relevant and prominent PCB congeners in different gender, age groups, ethnic groups and duration of exposure, etc. This will enable us to create awareness, minimize or completely avoid the exposure to more toxic PCB congeners and help to develop novel drugs to overcome their toxicity in humans.

Included in

Anthropology Commons