NYC toddlers exposed to high levels of flame retardants: Study

Researchers at the Columbia University have discovered high and potentially harmful levels of flame retardant on the hands of toddlers in New York City.The study, from the Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health, or CCCEH, in the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University, examined 25 mother-child participant pairs from the CCCEH Sibling-Hermanos birth cohort. Researchers wanted to study the amount of exposure and potential harm of persistent brominated flame retardants, or PBDEs, that were initially used in manufacturing in the 1970s, but phased out beginning in 2004 for alternative flame retardants such as TBB and TBPH.Not much is known about the health effects of TBB and TBPH, but they have been linked to reduced fertility and endocrine disruption in laboratory animals. The study found 100 percent of toddlers studied had high levels of flame retardants on their hands after exposure.

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