Study shows dangers of BPA chemical used in plastic packaging

telegraph.co.uk

Bisphenol A is used to line drinks cans and in tests affected the way genes work in the brains of laboratory rats

Further evidence has emerged showing that a chemical used widely in plastic packaging and the lining of drinks cans may be harmful to health.

The latest study has shown that bisphenol A (BPA) can affect the way genes work in the brains of laboratory rats, although other scientists have questioned the relevance of the findings to humans.

Researchers found that feeding BPA to pregnant rats was associated with lasting alterations to the “epigenetic” structure of genes in the brain tissue of their offspring, causing possible changes to certain aspects of sex-specific behaviour, such as chasing, sniffing and aggression.

Previous studies on laboratory animals have also pointed to a possible link between BPA and ill health but this research was criticised by other experts for using very high doses of the chemical, which would not be relevant to levels of human exposure, and to injecting the substance rather than feeding it through the diet, which is how BPA enters the human body.

The latest study by Frances Champagne of Columbia University in New York, published in the Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences, used what the scientists said were “environmentally relevant” doses of BPA, which were fed to the rats through their diet.

The researchers concluded: “This study provides evidence that low-dose maternal BPA exposure induces long-lasting disruption to epigenetic pathways in the brain of offspring….Importantly, our findings indicate that these BPA-induced changes occur in a sex-specific, brain region-specific and dose-dependent manner.”

Read More : telegraph.co.uk

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