Navigation Links
Could PCBs Help Boost Blood Pressure?
Date:7/19/2010

By Randy Dotinga
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, July 19 (HealthDay News) -- People in an Alabama city who had higher levels of the chemicals known as PCBs in their bodies were much more likely to have high blood pressure, a recent study found, but it's not clear if the PCBs actually caused their hypertension.

If a direct connection does exist, the finding may indicate a serious health threat to those exposed to PCBs, which were once used in many products but have been banned in the United States since 1979.

"We were surprised what a strong relationship we found," said study co-author Dr. David O. Carpenter, a public health physician and director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University at Albany in Rensselaer, N.Y.

The results could indicate trouble beyond Anniston, the city where the study took place, Carpenter added. While the city housed a plant that manufactured PCBs, the chemical levels linked to high blood pressure were typical of those of many people living elsewhere in the country.

PCBs -- polychlorinated biphenyls -- were used in hundreds of industrial products during much of the 20th century. The U.S. ban occurred amid fears about their adverse health effects, including the belief that the compounds may cause cancer.

More than three decades later, PCBs still linger in air, water and soil -- and in humans -- because the chemicals don't break down.

The study, published online recently in the Journal of Hypertension, was funded by the U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, part of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Researchers tested the blood of 758 Anniston residents (407 whites, 351 blacks) and checked their blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

The researchers focused on 394 people who were not taking high blood pressure medications. After adjusting the numbers for risk factors like gender and obesity, they found that those with the highest levels of PCBs in their bodies -- in the top third -- were more than 3.5 times more likely to have high blood pressure than those in the lowest third.

About a third of 98 people in the top third had elevated blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease and stroke.

If PCBs do contribute to high blood pressure in some way, it's not clear how they might do so. Carpenter said the chemicals could possibly disrupt genes that regulate blood pressure.

It's also possible that the chemicals could alter the way hormones work, encourage inflammation and disrupt cell functioning in the heart and blood vessels, added R. Thomas Zoeller, professor of biology at the University of Massachusetts.

Carpenter cautioned that factors other than PCBs could explain the higher rates of blood pressure in certain people. It's possible, for example, that high levels of PCB are a sign of exposure to other chemicals that actually may be at fault.

PCBs can still be found in animal fats, including fish, meat, dairy products, eggs and breast milk, according to the study.

What to do? Carpenter advised people to eat fewer animal fats, and Zoeller said the public should become more aware of the risks of the chemicals around them. "There are invisible pollutants like PCBs that can have very significant impact on our health," he said.

"These impacts are not trivial and should not be ignored," Zoeller said. "Because they are invisible, we don't have a choice but to be contaminated with them."

More information:

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has more details on PCBs.

SOURCES: David O. Carpenter, M.D., director, Institute for Health and the Environment, University at Albany, Rensselaer, N.Y.; R. Thomas Zoeller, Ph.D., professor of biology, University of Massachusetts, Amherst; July 19, 2010, online, Journal of Hypertension


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Could waiting 2 minutes improve how newborns recover from heart surgery?
2. Rare Blood Vessel Disease Could Have New Treatment Option
3. Could Having a Bigger Head Help Slow Alzheimers?
4. Sleep Apnea Could Raise Heart Risks for Older Men
5. Universal HIV testing and immediate treatment could reduce but not eliminate HIV/AIDS epidemic
6. Could Hot Weather Affect Results of a Colorectal Cancer Test?
7. Childhood malnutrition could weaken brain function in elderly
8. Testosterone Gel Could Raise Heart Risks in Frail, Older Men
9. Electronic health records could give rise to more liability risk
10. Patients Could Use More Help Quitting Smoking
11. Fresh findings about chickenpox could lead to better blood tests
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Could PCBs Help Boost Blood Pressure?
(Date:12/2/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 02, 2016 , ... ... proudly announces the launch of its 60-day free trial program for all of ... shipping make the offer a truly hassle free experience. , FlexiSpot’s unique desktop ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... 02, 2016 , ... With the number of pain management programs available for ... find the one that works for them. When an inventor from Suisun City, Calif., ... and decided to share it with others. , He developed a prototype for PRO ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... December 02, 2016 , ... Mediaplanet is proud to ... which covers the innovative treatments, therapeutic technologies, and revolutionized nutrition that are helping ... prolonging life 6 years in the last 3 decades,” says Dr. Valentine Fuster, ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... , ... Sourced from the Isbre Springs beneath the 5,000 year old Hardanger ... of just 6 ppm TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) in addition to its excellent taste ... several ShopRite and FoodTown stores in NJ and received rave comments from consumers. , ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... Francisco, CA (PRWEB) , ... December 02, 2016 ... ... digitally-enabled care journeys, announced today that it has raised $6.0 million in an ... inspired by Clarify Health’s conviction that patients and their caregivers can receive far ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2016)... Nov 30, 2016 Research and Markets has ... Monitoring Devices 2017 - MedCore" report to their offering. ... , , ... the skull. In healthy individuals, it is circulated though the brain and ... where the amount of CSF surrounding the brain changes significantly. ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the ... their offering. ... Detachable coil embolization is a minimally invasive method ... embolization treatment of cerebral aneurysms is less invasive and requires less recovery ... wall of an artery in the brain. This area bulges in the ...
(Date:11/30/2016)... Calif. , Nov. 30, 2016 Varian ... it was named America,s Most JUST Company in the ... and Forbes magazine,s inaugural "JUST 100 List." ... of the largest surveys ever conducted on attitudes towards ... months. This inaugural list ranks U.S companies against their ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: