Phthalates, synthetic chemicals used in consumer products linked to early death: Study

Phthalates, synthetic chemicals used in consumer products linked to early death: Study

Dubai - These deaths could cost up to $47 billion annually to the US in terms of lost economic productivity, said the report.



By Web Report

Published: Wed 13 Oct 2021, 2:33 PM

Constant exposure to phthalates, synthetic chemicals that are used in hundreds of consumer products may account for between 91,000 and 107,000 premature deaths every year among Americans in the 55-64 age bracket, says a study by New York University’s Grossman School of Medicine.

“Our findings reveal that increased phthalate exposure is linked to early death, particularly due to heart disease," said Dr Leonardo Trasande, professor of paediatrics, environmental medicine and population health and the lead author of the study. “Until now, we have understood that the chemicals connect to heart disease, and heart disease in turn is a leading cause of death, but we had not yet tied the chemicals themselves to death."

These deaths could cost up to $47 billion annually to the US in terms of lost economic productivity, said the report. The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences says phthalates interfere with the body’s mechanism for hormone production (the endocrine system) and are linked with “developmental, reproductive, brain, immune and other problems.” According to the NIEHS, even small hormonal disruptions can cause significant developmental and biological effects.

Another recent study by researchers from the University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, found that placentas of infants whose mothers were exposed to higher levels of phthalates during pregnancy had changes in the activity of over three dozen placental genes, including those involved in key biochemical pathways.

“Our findings suggest exposure to phthalates during pregnancy is associated with changes in gene expression in the placenta," said Alison Paquette, lead author of the study. “We know that phthalate exposure in pregnancy is associated with numerous adverse child health outcomes, including premature birth and behavioral changes in early childhood.”


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