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Friday, March 25, 2016

Endocrine Society statement on EDCs

This is a summary of the statement made by the Endocrine Society about Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals. EDCs are a major concern because 1. The effects can be pretty broad, 2. they change how the body works (usually for the worse), 3. they can stay in the body for decades, causing problems continuously, 4. low doses have subtle but terrible effects.

What is a cell receptor? A cell receptor is a hole, like a "jack" for your headphones. Only one size headphone "plug" can fit in this "jack".  There are many, many types of receptors on various cells. Normally, when a hormone is in the area of a cell, it will plug into this hole, and that tells the cell to do something. Other hormones can prevent the cell from doing other somethings. But Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals act exactly like hormones. They fit in certain receptors, making the cell think there is a hormone giving them a specific instruction!

This can lead to all kinds of bad effects, from cancer to neurological problems.

A summary of the Endocrine Society's executive summary (Aug 2015) about EDCs in the environment and how they affect human health. The full summary is called EDC-2, it is the second statement on EDCs. The first statement is from 2009 and is called EDC-1. (See Links.)

  1. Small doses matter. A fact industry continues to deny despite reliable, peer-reviewed studies to the contrary. "Like hormones, EDCs exhibit complex dose-response curves, and they can act at extremely low concentrations." That makes sense because cell receptors believe these chemicals actually ARE hormones. 
  2. When a person is exposed to an EDC, the effect might be immediate, or delayed. The simpleton, outdated, and dangerous, FDA protocols do not require long term studies on any chemicals, the study requirements only look at immediate responses. Thus the disagreement between the FDA and CDC on how dangerous EDCs really are. 
  3. "There are hundreds, if not thousands, of papers showing that EDC exposures affect expression of genes and proteins in different cells, tissues, and organs."
  4. "Recent evidence suggests that some EDCs may cause molecular epigenetic changes, including in the germline, which in turn may lead to transgenerational effects of EDCs on numerous organ systems." Epigenetics is a bit different from core DNA. Epigenetics is when a substances turns on or off a specific gene. The genes are already there, but they may not be on. If your grandfather was exposed to nasty chemicals, an epigenetic effect could be passed down several generations. This means children pay the price for exposure to chemicals where gov't regulations have not caught up with reality
  5. While causation is very hard to prove, many laws are based on high correlation. Except when it comes to EDCs, industry continues to fight against more regulations to keep the public safe. 
  6. KEY POINT!! "...we did exclude studies that did not utilize adequate positive or negative control groups or populations or experimental work that was conducted at unrealistically high dosages." This statement is being extra vigilant to find solid studies, regardless of outcome.
  7. EDC exposure show correlation with obesity and heart disease. 
  8. They have recommendations for what to study in the future.
    we did exclude studies that did not utilize adequate positive or negative control groups or populations or experimental work that was conducted at unrealistically high dosages - See more at: http://press.endocrine.org/doi/10.1210/er.2015-1093#sthash.oitEfsUQ.dpuf
Like hormones, EDCs exhibit complex dose-response curves, and they can act at extremely low concentrations. - See more at: http://press.endocrine.org/doi/10.1210/er.2015-1093#sthash.oitEfsUQ.dpuf
Thank you for reading. Stay healthy, stay safe. 

Links

  1. EDC-1. 2009 (the original EDC statement). Diamanti-Kandarakis E, Bourguignon JP, Giudice LC, et al. Endocrine-disrupting chemicals: an Endocrine Society scientific statement. Endocr Rev. 2009;30:293–342. , Google Scholar Abstract, Medline, ISI. Link here.
  2. EDC-2. DOI copy of Executive Summary. Aug 2015.
  3. EDC-2. ES copy of Executive Summary. Aug 2015. 
  4. EDC-2, full text. Aug 2015. 150 pages. Thanks to www.Researchgate.net.  I was able to download the PDF for free without signing in.

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