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Chemical in Plastic May Harm Human Growth

April 16, 2008

BPA in plastics harmful to children

Chemical in plastic may harm human growth

A federal report finds ‘some concern’ that fetuses, babies and children are at risk from bisphenol A. But plastics industry officials see no serious risk.
By Marla Cone, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
April 16, 2008
A controversial, estrogen-like chemical in plastic could be harming the development of children’s brains and reproductive organs, a federal health agency concluded in a report released Tuesday.

The National Toxicology Program, part of the National Institutes of Health, concluded that there was “some concern” that fetuses, babies and children were in danger because bisphenol A, or BPA, harmed animals at low levels found in nearly all human bodies.

An ingredient of polycarbonate plastic, BPA is one of the most widely used synthetic chemicals in industry today. It can seep from hard plastic beverage containers such as baby bottles, as well as from liners in cans containing food and infant formula.

The federal institute is the first government agency in the U.S. to conclude that low levels of BPA could be harming humans. Its findings will be used to help regulators at federal and state environmental agencies to develop policies governing its use.

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