BPA impairs brain function in monkeys

Well, well, well… yet another independent study comes out that shows BPA is harmful at low-levels. This particular study, conducted at Yale, used monkeys, not rodents. Because primates are human’s closest relative, you can draw the conclusion that results in humans would be quite similar.

Excerpt:

“They also used lower levels of the chemical than in past studies. ‘Our goal was to more closely mimic the slow and continuous conditions under which humans would normally be exposed to BPA,’ said study author Csaba Leranth, M.D., professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences and in Neurobiology at Yale. ‘As a result, this study is more indicative than past research of how BPA may actually affect humans.’”

How was the study conducted:

Over a 28-day period, Leranth and his team gave each primate 50 micrograms/kg of BPA per day, adjusted for body weight, the amount considered safe for human consumption by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The team also administered estradiol, the major form of hormonal estrogen that modulates nerve cell connections in the brain. Best known as one of the principal hormone products of the ovary, estrogen has also been shown in past studies to be synthesized in the brain, where it aids the development and function of the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex.

And the results?

The team then used an electron microscope to count nerve cell connections in the brain. They found that BPA inhibits creation of the synaptic connections in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex, areas of the brain involved with regulation of mood and formation of memory.

 “Our primate model indicates that BPA could negatively affect brain function in humans,” said study co-author Tibor Hajszan, M.D., associate research scientist in Yale Ob/Gyn. “Based on these new findings, we think the EPA may wish to consider lowering its ‘safe daily limit’ for human BPA consumption.”

Hajszan said that although daily exposure of an average person to BPA usually does not reach the level that was applied in this study, human exposure to BPA is not limited to a single month, but rather is continuous over a lifetime. “The negative effect of BPA may also be amplified when estradiol levels are naturally lower than in healthy adults. That is why exposure to BPA may particularly be risky in the case of babies and the elderly.”

Now, I don’t know about you, but the more studies such as this that are released, I am losing more and more confidence in the FDA, who are STILL claiming BPA is safe for human consumption. Obviously, they are still siding with the plastics industry and relying on biased research to draw their conclusion. Thanks to manufacturers taking things into their own hands, at least us parents who want BPA-free alternatives can get them readily. Hopefully thought the FDA will wake up, ban BPA, making our purchasing decisions much easier.
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