Stain repellent chemicals linked to liver damage in people


Synopsis by Craig Butt, from Environmental Health News

Elevated levels of two stain-resistant chemicals in the blood of adults living near a DuPont plant in the Mid-Ohio Valley were associated with enzyme activity that indicates liver damage and possible liver disease. The results of this large study of PFOA and PFOS, which are used to make cookware, food packaging and fabrics, mirror the findings of studies of lab animals and chemical plant workers.

A study of 47,000 people from West Virginia’s Mid-Ohio Valley who have high exposure to chemicals widely used on fabrics and food packaging to resist stains and water finds an association between increased blood levels of two of the chemicals and an enzyme marker for liver cell damage.

The results suggest exposure to higher levels of the perfluorinated acids known as PFOA and PFOS can change liver function in ways that may lead to disease. Animal studies show PFOA and PFOS congregate in the liver and cause diseases, such as enlarged livers and liver tumors. Results from human studies are murkier with some showing associations and others not.

Read the rest of this article at Environmental Health News.