Darkness3560 [creativecommons license] via Wikimedia Commons
Bisphenol-A (BPA) is a chemical present in materials many people use every day, such as polycarbonate plastics and the inner coatings of food and beverage containers. Exposure to BPA is quite pervasive: the chemical has been detected in the urine of more than 92% of those in the US who have been tested, and levels are typically higher in children and adolescents than in adults. In the body, BPA acts like the natural hormone estrogen and hence can have hormone-related effects. Rodents exposed to BPA during fetal and neonatal development had an increased risk of mammary and prostate cancers, altered behavior and obesity. Because of its ubiquity and potential health effects, BPA has come under increasing scrutiny. In one recent study, a group of scientists at Tufts University School of Medicine (Boston, MA) evaluated the effects of intra-uterine and perinatal exposure to BPA on reproductive capacity of female mouse pups.
Lab Anim. (NY) 40, 2 (2011).
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