Assessment of exposure to DDT and metabolites after indoor residual spraying through the analysis of thatch material from rural African dwellings

Environmental Science and Pollution Research



We report on the analysis of 4,4′-dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (4,4′-DDT) and its metabolites in thatch and branch samples constituting the wall materials of dwellings from South African subtropical areas. This approach was used to assess the exposure to DDT in the residents of the dwellings after indoor residual spraying (IRS) following recommended sanitation practices against malaria vectors.


Examination of the distributions of DDT compounds (2,4′-DDT, 4,4′-DDT and its metabolites) in 43 dwellings from the area of Manhiça (Mozambique) has shown median concentrations of 19, 130, and 23 ng/g for 2,4′-DDT, 4,4′-DDT, and 4,4′-DDE, respectively, in 2007 when IRS implementation was extensive. The concentrations of these compounds at the onset of the IRS campaign (n = 48) were 5.5, 47, and 2.2 ng/g, respectively. The differences were statistically significant and showed an increase in the concentration of this insecticide and its metabolites. Calculation of 4,4′-DDT in the indoor air resulting from the observed concentrations in the wall materials led to the characteristic values of environments polluted with this insecticide.