Endocrine Disruptors

A Small Dose of Persistent Endocrine Disruptors


  • An Introduction to the Health Effects of Endocrine Disruptors

Ancient Greek Athletes - "The Greek physician Galen is reputed to have prescribed 'the rear hooves of an Abyssinian ass, ground up, boiled in oil, and flavored with rose hips and rose petals' to improve performance."

 

Endocrine Disruptors Dossier


 

Name: Endocrine Disruptors

  • Use: wide range of chemicals, pesticides, plastics, flame retardants, medicine
  • Source: synthetic chemistry, plants
  • Recommended daily intake: none (not essential)
  • Absorption: intestine, respiratory system (lungs), skin
  • Sensitive individuals: fetus and children
  • Toxicity/symptoms: endocrine system, mimic estrogen, anti-estrogenic, effects on hormone levels, sexual characteristics, reproduction, and development
  • Regulatory facts: FDA and EPA are reviewing
  • General facts: billions of pounds used every year in wide range of products
  • Environmental: widely distributed in environment and can affect wildlife
  • Recommendations: minimize use, avoid exposure by children, and consider alternatives

 

 

 

 

Bisphenol-A

Diethylstilbestrol

 

Persistent Environmental Contaminants Chapter


PowerPoint Presentation


Potential Endocrine Disruptors

Class

Chemical

Use

Pesticide

DDT

Insecticide (no longer allowed in US)

 

2,4-D

Herbicide

 

Atrazine

Herbicide

Plastics ingredients

Bisphenol-A

Building block of polycarbonate plastic, epoxy resins used for food can coatings

 

Phthalates

Softener in plastics, solvent

Industrial chemical

Nonylphenol (breakdown product of nonylphenol ethoxylates)

Detergents, paints, pesticides

Fire retardant

Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs)

Fire retardant

Drug

Diethylstilbesterol (DES)

Formerly used to prevent miscarriages

Contaminants

Dioxin

Byproduct of PVC plastics, incineration byproduct, contaminant in certain chlorinated compounds

 

Arsenic, Lead, Mercury

Widespread contaminants

 

Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)

Formerly used in transformer oils

Major Glands and Examples of Hormones and Function

Gland (location)

Example hormone

Function

Pineal gland (brain)

Melatonin

Sleep

Pituitary gland (brain)

Growth hormone

Growth, cell reproduction

 

Prolactin

Milk production, sexual gratification

 

Thyroid-stimulating hormone

Stimulates thyroid gland to secrete T3 and T4

 

Luteinizing hormone

Female: ovulation

Male: regulates testosterone

Thyroid gland (neck)

Thyroxine (T4)

Metabolism

 

Triiodothyronine (T3)

Metabolism

Adrenal gland (kidney)

Glucocorticoids

Affects glucose uptake

 

Adrenaline

Fight-or-flight response (range of effects)

Pancreas (abdomen)

Insulin

Regulates glucose

Ovary (female)

Progesterone

Pregnancy, muscle relaxation, range of effects

 

Estrogens

Growth, sexual characteristics

Testes (male)

Testosterone (androgen)

Muscle mass, bone density, sexual maturation

More Information and References


European, Asian, and international Agencies


  • European Commission. Plant Protection Products. Site contains policy and other information on the use of pesticides in agriculture.
  • World Health Organization (WHO). WHO Pesticide Evaluation Scheme (WHOPES). WHOPES is an "international programme which promotes and coordinates the testing and evaluation of new pesticides proposed for public health use."
  • International Programme on Chemical Safety (IPCS). "Through the International Programme on Chemical Safety (IPCS), WHO works to establish the scientific basis for the sound management of chemicals, and to strengthen national capabilities and capacities for chemical safety."

 

North American Agencies


  • US National Institutes of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS). Endocrine Disruptors. Provides an overview of endocrine disruptors and recent research.

Non-government Organizations


  • Natural Resources Defense Council. Endocrine Disruptors. General information on endocrine disruptors.

References


  • No labels