Study links phthalates to asthma

Mike Verespej

Published: September 7, 2012 6:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Sustainability, Public Policy, Materials, Suppliers

NEW YORK (Sept. 7, 2:20 p.m. ET) — A new research study says that children between the ages of 5 and 9 who are exposed to two types of phthalates found in personal-care products have an elevated risk of asthma-related airway inflammation.

The study — conducted by the Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health in New York — found that all of the 244 children had detectable levels of phthalates in their urine, as well as higher levels of diethyl phthalate and butylbenzyl phthalate in their urine samples.

The researchers said the higher level of phthalates in those urine samples were associated with higher levels of nitric oxide in their exhaled breath, a biological marker of airway inflammation.

The association between BBzP exposure and airway inflammation was especially strong among children who had recently reported wheeze, a common symptom of asthma, said the researchers.

“While many factors contribute to childhood asthma, our study shows that exposure to phthalates may play a significant role,” said Allan Just, a postdoctoral researcher at the Harvard School of Public Health and lead author of the report.

The study did not specify what type of products with phthalates the children in the study might have been exposed to. All the children live in northern Manhattan and the south Bronx, where asthma prevalence is high.

It is the first study to use exhaled nitric oxide in a study of phthalate exposure in children.

“Many asthma patients only have asthma exacerbations a few times a year, making it difficult to discern short-term associations between environmental exposures and the disease,” said Matthew Perzanowski, senior author of the report and associate professor of environmental health sciences at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University. “To solve this problem, we used nitric oxide, which has been shown to be a reliable marker of airway inflammation in response to known asthma triggers like vehicle emissions.”

“The study by the Columbia Center should be interpreted with great caution,” said Steve Risotto, senior director of the phthalates ester panel at the American Chemistry Council in Washington.

“The report is based on a single measurement of phthalate meta­bolite concentrations and fails to recognize that phthalates are broken down within hours and quickly eliminated from the body,” while the airway inflammation measured might take days or even weeks to manifest itself.

“Importantly the authors note that they found ‘no direct association’ between any of the phthalate metabolites and more traditional measures of asthma and allergy among the children tested,” Risotto said.


Comments

Study links phthalates to asthma

Mike Verespej

Published: September 7, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Coca-Cola sustainability report highlights PlantBottle usage

October 1, 2014 12:47 pm ET

Coca-Cola Co. has now distributed more than 25 billion PlantBottles since their introduction five years ago.    More

Image

OptiLedge taking Ikea's pallet replacement system to the next level

October 1, 2014 11:49 am ET

OptiLedge LLC is taking Ikea's plastic alternative to the traditional wooden pallet to the next level, making and marketing them globally.    More

Image

Blow molding machinery maker opens first plant in Taiwan

October 1, 2014 1:27 pm ET

Taiwanese equipment maker Kin Precision Industry Co. Ltd. has opened a 2,000-square-meter, 25-employee factory in Taichung, Taiwan, with an eye to...    More

Image

Global Plastics Summit puts PE prices in the spotlight

October 1, 2014 3:17 pm ET

Product manufacturers may start to shift away from polyethylene because of high prices, according to two major plastics processors.    More

Image

Speaker: Many issues can affect multi-cavity molds

October 1, 2014 2:02 pm ET

There are several conditions necessary across all cavities of a multi-cavity mold to ensure that all parts are produced the same. These include identi...    More

Market Reports

Plastics in Mexico - State of the Industry Report

This report analyzes the $20 million dollar plastics industry in Mexico including sales of machinery & equipment, resins and finished products.

Our industry analysis highlights macro industry trends and micro trends faced by companies that do business in Mexico. The report also provides key industry statistics and forecasts to anticipate future industry expansion.

Learn more

Plastics Caps & Closures Market Report

The annual recap of top trends and future outlook for the plastics caps & closures market features interviews with industry thought leaders and Bill Wood’s economic forecast of trends in growing end markets. You will also gain insight on trends in caps design, materials, machinery, molds & tooling and reviews of mergers & acquisitions.

Learn more

Injection Molders Market Report & Ranking 2014

This special package contains our 132-page 2014 Market Report on the Injection Molding segment and our exclusive 2014 RANKINGS database of 500+ Injection Molders for a discounted package price.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events