Researchers at Calgary University in Canada have presented a study that shows that exposure to Bisphenol A (BPA) during a time point analogous to the second trimester in humans has effects on brain development and behaviour. BPA is a known endocrine disrupting chemical (EDC), linked to adverse effects such as obesity, cancer and hyperactivity.
Further, the study presents groundbreaking research on Bispenol S (BPS), a substance often used to replace BPA, showing it has equal negative effects as BPA. Treatment of embryonic zebrafish with very low-dose BPA and BPS respectively, resulted in significant increases in neuronal birth within the hypothalamus, a highly conserved brain region involved in hyperactivity.
The researchers behind the study writes that “these findings suggest that BPA-free products are not necessarily safe and support a societal push to remove all structurally similar bisphenol analogues and other compounds with endocrine-disruptive activity from consumer goods.”
In recent decades a number of hazardous chemicals have become targets for phase-out due to regulatory action and societal pressure. In some cases, substitutes have later been shown to have similar hazardous properties as the problematic chemicals they replaced. Research on alternative chemicals is often very poor, and just like in the case with bisphenols, this can result in regrettable substitution.
– This is why we have launched SINimilarity, an online tool where you can find out if a chemical is similar to any of the chemicals on the SIN List. If a chemical has similar structure as a hazardous chemical, we recommend further investigations before use, says Anna Lennquist, toxicologist at ChemSec.