September 23, 2003

Mother's Milk: PBDE Health Effects: Independent Studies

Dozens of independent studies have linked low levels of bromated fire retardants with a variety of adverse health effects with more being published in the near future. Listed below is a small subset of these studies with a summary of their key findings and links to their abstracts where available.

• Eriksson P, Jakobsson E, Fredriksson A. Brominated flame retardants: a novel class of developmental neurotoxicants in our environment? Environ Health Perspect. 2001 Sep;109(9):903-8.

Key finding: A single dose of PBDEs given to mice in early development caused effects on learning and memory, spontaneous motor behavior and habitutation capability that worsened with age.

• Branchi I, Alleva E, Costa LG. Effects of perinatal exposure to a polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE 99) on mouse neurobehavioural development. Neurotoxicology. 2002 Sep;23(3):375-84.

Key finding: A low dose of PBDEs given to mice in early development led to changes in behavior.

• Eriksson P, Viberg H, Jakobsson E, Orn U, Fredriksson A. A brominated flame retardant, 2,2',4,4',5-pentabromodiphenyl ether: uptake, retention, and induction of neurobehavioral alterations in mice during a critical phase of neonatal brain development. Toxicol Sci. 2002 May;67(1):98-103.

Key finding: A single dose of PBDEs given to mice in early development significantly impaired spontaneous motor behavior.

• Zhou T, Taylor MM, DeVito MJ, Crofton KM. Developmental exposure to brominated diphenyl ethers results in thyroid hormone disruption. Toxicol Sci. 2002 Mar;66(1):105-16.

Key finding: PBDEs are an endocrince disruptor during development.

• Kuriyama, S. and Chahoud, I. 2003. Maternal exposure to low dose 2,2'4,4',5 pentabromo diphenyl ether (PBDE 99) impairs male reproductive performance in adult male offspring. Organohologen Compounds. (61):92- 95.

Key finding: Single very low dose of PBDEs given to rats in early development caused decreased sperm count in adult offspring.

Abstract not available on-line. EWG can provide copy upon request.