Green Buckeye RN


EHN: Pillows, Vehicle Seats Key Sources Of Flame Retardants
November 24, 2009, 9:54 am
Filed under: News

Nov 24, 2009

Imm P, L Knobeloch, C Buelow and HA Anderson. 2009. Household exposures to polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in a Wisconsin cohort. Environmental Health Perspectives doi: 10.1289/ehp.0900839.

Synopsis by Jonathan Chevrier, Ph.D.

Pillows and vehicle seats may be important household contributors to flame retardant exposure in humans.

Researchers have tracked the most significant sources of human exposure to one type of flame retardant chemicals – polybrominated dipheylethers (PBDEs) – by using a new kind of portable x-ray analyzer that can detect bromine levels in household items.

Topping the list were sleeping pillows and vehicle seat cushions whose bromine levels were significantly associated with PBDE levels measured in the participant’s blood. Bromine levels ranged dramatically from product to product and house to house, even among similar pieces of furniture or electronics.

PBDEs are used to reduce the flamability and burning rate of a number of consumer products including furniture, electronics and textiles. PBDEs are widespread throughout the environment, contaminating food, household dust and air. Studies have also detected the flame retardants in wildlife and humans around the world.

Exposure to PBDEs is of concern as animals studies suggest that they may impact neurodevelopment. Human studies also also reported links with testosterone and thyroid hormone levels.

Read the article at http://www.environmentalhealthnews.org/ehs/newscience/pillows-vehicles-major-sources-of-flame-retardants/

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