Researcher ContactRémy Slama
Chargé de recherche Inserm
Unité Inserm 823 Centre de recherche Albert Bonniot, Grenoble
Tél : 04 76 54 94 02
Pregnant women are exposed to several compounds that are widely produced and abundant in our environment. This is the case for parabens (used as preservatives in cosmetics and healthcare products), triclosan (an antibacterial agent and pesticide found in some toothpastes and soaps), benzophenone-3 (used in sun protection products as a UV filter), dichlorophenols (the precursors of which are used in the manufacture of indoor deodorisers), and bisphenol A (the uses of which include manufacture of polycarbonate-based plastics (plastic bottles, CD cases, etc.) and epoxy resins (lining of food cans, dental amalgams) . These compounds belong to the phenol family, and are endocrine disruptors. Experimental studies carried out in vitro and on animals have indicated that these compounds interact with the hormone systems involved in growth and weight gain.
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 in exposure measurement, and to identify the potential periods of greatest influence of phenols on the growth of children during childhood. Girls, whose sensitivity to phenols may differ from that of boys, will also be considered in this new couple-child cohort.
The use of bisphenol A in packaging for foods for infants and young children was banned in 2013. This ban is due to be applied to all food packaging from 1 January 2015.
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