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Exposure of pregnant women to certain phenols may disrupt the growth of boys
Date:9/3/2014

ty Hospitals between 2003 and 2006, prior to the present regulations concerning bisphenol A. Growth of each child was assessed by ultrasonography during pregnancy, and by measuring weight and length/height from birth to the age of 3 years. A urine sample taken during pregnancy allowed measurement of biomarkers for exposure to phenols in the CDC Atlanta Environmental Health Laboratory for US biosurveillance programmes.

Results obtained by Rmy Slama, Claire Philippat and colleagues show that over 95% of the pregnant women were exposed to these substances, and that maternal exposure to some phenols may disrupt the growth of boys. More specifically, the researchers showed a negative correlation between triclosan levels and growth parameters measured at the ultrasound examination in the third trimester of pregnancy, and that parabens were associated with increased weight at birth and at three years. It is known that accelerated growth in the first years of life may increase the risk of obesity in later childhood. The study did not identify any clear link between urinary concentrations of other phenols and ante- and postnatal growth of boys. Because the urinary concentration of bisphenol A varies widely, it was not quantified accurately in the present study, which relied on a single urine sample for each woman.

For the researchers, "this is the first study concerning these environmental contaminants based on growth data collected during pregnancy, at birth, and up to the age of three years. Previous studies were focused on just one of these periods, and were usually restricted to the study of bisphenol A, without including other phenols."

The research teams will now try to repeat these results for a new couple-child cohort (the SEPAGES cohort), for which numerous urine samples will be collected from each participant (mother and newborn) during pregnancy and the child's first few years of life. This approach will make it possible to reduce errors
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Contact: Priscille Rivière
presse@inserm.fr
INSERM (Institut national de la sant et de la recherche mdicale)
Source:Eurekalert

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