GROUP:

Teenagers


health & safety concerns:
chemicals found
on average indivi-
dual range
entire group
Immune system (including sensitization and allergies) 5 1-7 8
Respiratory system 4 3-4 4
Reproduction and fertility 9 1-28 33
Brain and nervous system 19 1-28 33
Chronic effects, general 3 2-4 4
Endocrine system 2 1-4 6
Skin 1 1-2 2
Gastrointestinal (including liver) 1 1-1 1

Group members:

(24 People)

Anonymous Teen 1
Nina Damato
Emily Sayrs
Heather Gellert
Anonymous Teen 20
Emma Spencer
Erin Schrode
Linda Loi
Sydney Blankers
Sarah Oswald
Asta Haman-Dicko
Laurie Mittelmann
Jenny Gilbertson
Anonymous Teen 11
Anonymous Teen 9
Christa Heffron
Caroline Burlingame
Monica Paulson
Donalin Cazeau
Natalie Klapper
Jessica Assaf
Hope Atkins
Rizza Alcaria
Alex Wells


Locations:

Atlanta, GA
Washington, DC
Littleton, CO
Belvedere, CA
Austin, TX
Winchester, MA
Ross, CA
San Francisco, CA
Belmont, CA
Palm Beach Gardens, FL
San Leandro, CA
North Caldwell, NJ
Novato, CA
Los Angeles, CA
Portland, OR
Langhorne, PA
University Place, WA
Dorchester, MA
San Rafael, CA
Tuolumne, CA
Manteca, CA



picture of group

Group: Teenagers
Found 59-63 of 93 tested chemicals (24 participants)

The blood and urine of the "Teenagers" group contained 59-63 of 93 industrial compounds, pollutants and other chemicals tested, including chemicals linked to immune system toxicity, respiratory system toxicity, and reproductive toxicity and fertility problems.

Summary of chemicals found in Teenagers

chemical family level found in group health effects exposure routes
BADGE-4OH33% high
33% moderate
Endocrine system Food can linings, dental sealants
Lead33% moderate
67% low
Lead-based paint in older homes, household dust, vinyl products, tap water
Mercury100% low
Brain and nervous system Seafood, flu shots/vaccines, dental fillings
Methylmercury75% high
25% low
Dietary sources, particularly seafood
Nitro- and polycylic- musks11% high
44% moderate
17% low
Endocrine system, Cancer Cosmetics, perfumes, cleaning agents, detergents, soaps
Parabens35% high
50% moderate
15% low
Personal care products, some foods, beverages, and medications
Perchlorate100% moderate
Hematologic (blood) system, Birth defects and developmental delays Contaminated food and drinking water
Perfluorochemicals (PFCs)75% moderate
25% low
Cancer, Birth defects and developmental delays, Endocrine system Stain- and grease-proof coatings on food packaging, couches, carpets, pans
Phthalates22% high
65% moderate
13% low
Endocrine system Cosmetics, paint, soft plastic, food packaging, and other consumer products
Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs)67% moderate
33% low
Reproduction and fertility, Brain and nervous system Foam furniture, carpet padding, computers, televisions, contaminated house dust, food
Triclosan29% high
67% moderate
Endocrine system, Skin Antibacterial soap, toothpaste, cosmetics, cleaning products, shoe insoles, plastic cutting boards, other antibacterial items

Test results by chemical family (see each chemical)

bisphenol a & badge

1 of 2 found

Metabolite of BADGE, used to make metal food can linings. Linked to hormone activity, skin and immune system toxicity and cancer.

  • geometric mean: 15.4 ng/mL in blood serum (vs. 9.33 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 3 people in the group (vs. 30 of 41 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Emily Sayrs, Heather Gellert
3.02ng/mL in blood serum174


metals

3 of 3 found

Neurotoxic heavy metal linked to IQ deficits and behavioral problems. Found in dust from chipping lead paint in older homes, and in some tap water.

0.222ug/dL in whole blood4.7


Mercury is used in dental fillings and to preserve vaccines; it is also a common pollutant in seafood. Mercury harms brain development and function.

  • geometric mean: 0.15 ug/L in whole blood (vs. 0.56 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 1 of 1 people in the group (vs. 7,584 of 8,373 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Anonymous Teen 1
7.0E-5ug/L in whole blood12


Forms from mercury, a pollutant from coal-fired power plants and other sources. Methylmercury accumulates in seafood and harms brain development and function.

0.0735ug/L in whole blood25.9


nitro- and polycylic- musks

2 of 11 found — see each chemical

Fragrance ingredients. Build up in human tissues. May harm hormone system.

0.0547ng/g in blood serum4.23


Total Nitro- and polycylic- musks

parabens

6 of 6 found — see each chemical

Preservatives in cosmetics. Cause skin irritation and allergies. May be linked to hormone disruption and breast cancer.

8.39ug/g creatinine in urine3820


Total Parabens

perchlorate

1 of 1 found

Explosive component of solid rocket and missile fuel. Widespread contaminant of food, drinking water, and people. Disrupts thyroid hormones, particularly in women with lower iodide intake; may harm brain development.

  • geometric mean: 5.6 ug/L in urine (vs. 3.77 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 1 of 1 people in the group (vs. 2,818 of 2,818 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Anonymous Teen 1
0.2ug/L in urine5.6


perfluorochemicals (pfcs)

11 of 14 found — see each chemical

Includes Teflon, Scotchgard, Stainmaster. Linked to cancer and birth defects.

Perfluorochemicals (PFCs) were measured in different units for some of the members of this group. Overall it was found in 1 of the 1 members tested in the group. The bars below are grouped by units:

  • geometric mean: 22.7 ng/g in blood serum (vs. 27.3 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 1 of 1 people in the group (vs. 8 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Nina Damato
8.51ng/g in blood serum59.7


Total Perfluorochemicals (PFCs)

phthalates

7 of 7 found — see each chemical

In cosmetics, paint, and plastics. Linked to sperm damage and birth defects of male reproductive system.

102ug/g creatinine in urine10800


Total Phthalates

polybrominated diphenyl ethers (pbdes)

27-31 of 46 found — see each chemical

Fire retardants in furniture foam, computers, and televisions. Accumulate in human tissues. May harm brain development.

  • geometric mean: 18.9 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 26.3 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
      [excludes PBDE-154/PBB-153]
  • found in 3 of 3 people in the group (vs. 2,037 of 2,337 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Heather Gellert, Anonymous Teen 1, Emily Sayrs
1.11ng/g lipids in blood serum314


Total Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs)

triclosan

1 of 1 found

Antibacterial agent (pesticide) in liquid hand soap, toothpaste, cosmetics, cleaning products, footwear, and plastic products labeled "antibacterial." Triclosan may disrupt thyroid hormones, and can form several chemicals with health and environmental concerns.

Triclosan were measured in different units for some of the members of this group. Overall it was found in 21 of the 21 members tested in the group. The bars below are grouped by units:

  • geometric mean: results not quantified
  • found in 1 of 1 people in the group (vs. 17 of 21 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Anonymous Teen 1

found in 1 of 1 members of the group, but not quantified

 


0.43ug/g creatinine in urine350


References/Notes

[1] CDC (2005). National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals, Centers for Disease Control. http://www.cdc.gov/exposurereport/. (Methylmercury results have been compared to total mercury in CDC biomonitoring.)