Plastic exposure in the womb may make girls aggressive, hyperactive

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Toronto, Oct 6 (ANI): Expectant mothers exposed to chemical BPA, commonly found in plastics, are likely to have daughters with aggressive and hyperactive nature, according to a new study.

Bisphenol A, also known as BPA, has been linked to reproductive problems and diabetes.

The chemical is used to make hard, clear reusable water bottles, baby bottles and resins that line the inside of metal food and beverage cans.

During the study, the researchers measured the BPA levels in urine samples taken from 249 pregnant women in Cincinnati at 16 and 26 weeks pregnancy and again when they gave birth.

Lead researcher Bruce Lanphear, a Simon Fraser University professor of children's environmental health and his team showed that chemical concentrations between 13 and 16 weeks of pregnancy were most strongly associated with behaviour problems in girls, but no found no significant effect on boys.

The girls were further examined at age five.What we found over the past 10 or more years is that the kinds of subtle shifts in behaviours or cognition in very young kids oftentimes become manifest as [psychological issues] in older kids and adolescents," the Globe and Mail quoted Lanphear as saying.

"At a minimum, we should ask industries to begin to label their products as to whether they contain bisphenol A so we give families a choice when they make purchases.

"Environmental chemicals should be tested for their safety or their toxicity before they're marketed," he added.

Rick Smith, executive director of Toronto-based Environmental Defence, called the study significant, saying the chemical industry can no longer say that studies of BPA's effects are not applicable to human health because they were done on animals.

"Not only does this underline the importance of getting the chemical out of baby bottles, but we now need to take the next step and get it out of other areas where kids are exposed, most notably infant formula containers," said Smith. (ANI)

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