GROUP:

EWG/Commonweal Study #4, industrial chemicals and pesticides in cord blood


health & safety concerns:
chemicals found
on average indivi-
dual range
entire group
Brain and nervous system 134 79-160 180
Immune system (including sensitization and allergies) 121 78-142 166
Reproduction and fertility 42 33-49 63
Gastrointestinal (including liver) 31 22-40 50
Birth defects and developmental delays 8 7-12 13
Cancer 2 2-2 2
Endocrine system 1 1-1 1
Kidney and renal system 1 1-1 1

Group members:

(10 People)

Baby #1
Baby #2
Baby #3
Baby #4
Baby #5
Baby #6
Baby #7
Baby #8
Baby #9
Baby #10


Locations:


about this group:

Though scientists once thought that the womb protected developing babies from pollution, a new study of umbilical cord blood from newborns found an extensive array of industrial chemicals, pesticides and other pollutants. Ten newborns averaged 200 contaminants, and 209 pollutants had never before been detected in cord blood.


picture of group

Group: EWG/Commonweal Study #4, industrial chemicals and pesticides in cord blood
Found 213-287 of 413 tested chemicals (10 participants)

The cord blood of the "EWG/Commonweal Study #4, industrial chemicals and pesticides in cord blood" group contained 213-287 of 413 industrial compounds, pollutants and other chemicals tested, including chemicals linked to brain and nervous system toxicity, immune system toxicity, and reproductive toxicity and fertility problems.

Summary of chemicals found in EWG/Commonweal Study #4, industrial chemicals and pesticides in cord blood

chemical family level found in group health effects exposure routes
Brominated dioxins & furans70% moderate
Immune system (including sensitization and allergies) Dietary sources, fatty meat, dairy and fish
Chlorinated dioxins & furans100% moderate
Immune system (including sensitization and allergies), Birth defects and developmental delays Dietary sources, fatty meat, dairy and fish
Methylmercury30% high
60% moderate
10% low
Dietary sources, particularly seafood
Organochlorine Pesticides (OCs)100% low
Reproduction and fertility Contaminated food and drinking water
Perfluorochemicals (PFCs)30% high
70% moderate
Cancer, Birth defects and developmental delays, Endocrine system Stain- and grease-proof coatings on food packaging, couches, carpets, pans
Polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)40% high
60% moderate
Reproduction and fertility Air polluted by vehicles or factories, burned and fatty food
Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs)100% low
Reproduction and fertility, Brain and nervous system Foam furniture, carpet padding, computers, televisions, contaminated house dust, food
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)100% moderate
Brain and nervous system, Immune system (including sensitization and allergies) Dietary sources, fatty meat, dairy and fish
Polychlorinated naphthalenes (PCNs)80% moderate
20% low
Gastrointestinal (including liver) Dietary sources, fatty meat, dairy and fish

Detailed report by chemical (return to summary)

brominated dioxins & furans

6-7 of 12 found

Contaminants in flame retardants, pollutants from plastics. May harm hormone system.

7.72pg/g lipids in blood serum1440


Total Brominated dioxins & furans

  • geometric mean: 7.57 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 5.81 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 10 of 23 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #3, Baby #4, Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #1
7.72pg/g lipids in blood serum751


  • geometric mean: 1.49 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 1.19 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 1 of 10 people in the group (vs. 1 of 23 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #1
53.3pg/g lipids in blood serum53.3


  • geometric mean: 2.96 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 3.2 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 3 of 10 people in the group (vs. 6 of 23 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #1
25.6pg/g lipids in blood serum452


  • geometric mean: 2.33 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 1.86 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 3 of 10 people in the group (vs. 5 of 23 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #6, Baby #1, Baby #5
5.16pg/g lipids in blood serum60.8


  • geometric mean: 1.49 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.917 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 8 of 23 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #3, Baby #4, Baby #6, Baby #2, Baby #1, Baby #5
0.787pg/g lipids in blood serum25.5


  • geometric mean: 1.5 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 1.19 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 10 people in the group (vs. 2 of 23 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #5, Baby #1
5.34pg/g lipids in blood serum11.1


chlorinated dioxins & furans

11 of 17 found

Pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, and incineration. Cause cancer and may harm hormone system.

5pg/g lipids in blood serum1860


Total Chlorinated dioxins & furans

Chlorinated dioxins are unwanted byproducts of the manufacture and burning of products that contain chlorine. Dioxins cause cancer in humans, and they are generally considered to be among the most toxic environmental contaminants known to man. As a class, dioxins are extremely toxic, persistent, bioaccumulative, and lipophilic ("fat-loving"). This means that dioxins build up and are stored in fatty tissues and fluids, such as breast milk, and can be passed on to fetuses and infants during pregnancy and lactation. Most people are exposed to dioxin through the food they eat, primarily from meat, dairy, fish and eggs.

In humans, dioxins are associated with cancer, skin lesions, damage to the nervous system and immune system, altered carbohydrate and lipid metabolism, thyroid disruption, altered menstrual cycling, and cardiovascular effects.

In laboratory animals, dioxins are known to cause a variety of effects including cancer and impaired reproductive, endocrine, cardiovascular, immune, respiratory, neurological and metabolic function. In addition, dioxins cause skin disease and birth defects.

In dioxin family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

5pg/g lipids in blood serum125


Chlorinated furans, also called chlorinated dibenzofurans or CDFs, are toxic, persistent, bioaccumulative, and lipophilic ("fat-loving""). This means that CDFs build up and are stored in fatty tissues and fluid, such as breast milk, and can be passed on to fetuses and infants during pregnancy and lactation.

In humans, CDFs are associated with premature birth and abnormal development, liver toxicity, skin disease, eye inflammation, and damage to the nervous, immune, endocrine, and reproductive systems (ATSDR 1994b).

In laboratory animals, CDFs are known to cause a variety of effects including damage to the reproductive, endocrine, immune, and nervous systems. In addition, CDFs harm the kidneys and gastrointestinal tract, and cause birth defects (ATSDR 1994b).

In chlorinated furan family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

0.379pg/g lipids in blood serum61.4


Chlorinated dioxins are unwanted byproducts of the manufacture and burning of products that contain chlorine. Dioxins cause cancer in humans, and they are generally considered to be among the most toxic environmental contaminants known to man. As a class, dioxins are extremely toxic, persistent, bioaccumulative, and lipophilic ("fat-loving"). This means that dioxins build up and are stored in fatty tissues and fluids, such as breast milk, and can be passed on to fetuses and infants during pregnancy and lactation. Most people are exposed to dioxin through the food they eat, primarily from meat, dairy, fish and eggs.

In humans, dioxins are associated with cancer, skin lesions, damage to the nervous system and immune system, altered carbohydrate and lipid metabolism, thyroid disruption, altered menstrual cycling, and cardiovascular effects.

In laboratory animals, dioxins are known to cause a variety of effects including cancer and impaired reproductive, endocrine, cardiovascular, immune, respiratory, neurological and metabolic function. In addition, dioxins cause skin disease and birth defects.

In dioxin family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

3.79pg/g lipids in blood serum63.7


In dioxin family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

  • geometric mean: 1.55 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 2.98 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 758 of 4,821 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #3, Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #4
2.36pg/g lipids in blood serum24.3


Chlorinated furans, also called chlorinated dibenzofurans or CDFs, are toxic, persistent, bioaccumulative, and lipophilic ("fat-loving""). This means that CDFs build up and are stored in fatty tissues and fluid, such as breast milk, and can be passed on to fetuses and infants during pregnancy and lactation.

In humans, CDFs are associated with premature birth and abnormal development, liver toxicity, skin disease, eye inflammation, and damage to the nervous, immune, endocrine, and reproductive systems (ATSDR 1994b).

In laboratory animals, CDFs are known to cause a variety of effects including damage to the reproductive, endocrine, immune, and nervous systems. In addition, CDFs harm the kidneys and gastrointestinal tract, and cause birth defects (ATSDR 1994b).

In chlorinated furan family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

  • geometric mean: 1.18 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 2.78 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 1 of 10 people in the group (vs. 1,707 of 4,821 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #2
2.66pg/g lipids in blood serum24.3


In chlorinated furan family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

  • geometric mean: 1.22 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 2.49 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 1 of 10 people in the group (vs. 1,261 of 4,821 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #2
2.34pg/g lipids in blood serum22.9


In chlorinated furan family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

0.379pg/g lipids in blood serum13.6


Chlorinated dioxins are unwanted byproducts of the manufacture and burning of products that contain chlorine. Dioxins cause cancer in humans, and they are generally considered to be among the most toxic environmental contaminants known to man. As a class, dioxins are extremely toxic, persistent, bioaccumulative, and lipophilic ("fat-loving"). This means that dioxins build up and are stored in fatty tissues and fluids, such as breast milk, and can be passed on to fetuses and infants during pregnancy and lactation. Most people are exposed to dioxin through the food they eat, primarily from meat, dairy, fish and eggs.

In humans, dioxins are associated with cancer, skin lesions, damage to the nervous system and immune system, altered carbohydrate and lipid metabolism, thyroid disruption, altered menstrual cycling, and cardiovascular effects.

In laboratory animals, dioxins are known to cause a variety of effects including cancer and impaired reproductive, endocrine, cardiovascular, immune, respiratory, neurological and metabolic function. In addition, dioxins cause skin disease and birth defects.

In dioxin family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

15.9pg/g lipids in blood serum1590


Chlorinated dioxins are unwanted byproducts of the manufacture and burning of products that contain chlorine. Dioxins cause cancer in humans, and they are generally considered to be among the most toxic environmental contaminants known to man. As a class, dioxins are extremely toxic, persistent, bioaccumulative, and lipophilic ("fat-loving"). This means that dioxins build up and are stored in fatty tissues and fluids, such as breast milk, and can be passed on to fetuses and infants during pregnancy and lactation. Most people are exposed to dioxin through the food they eat, primarily from meat, dairy, fish and eggs.

In humans, dioxins are associated with cancer, skin lesions, damage to the nervous system and immune system, altered carbohydrate and lipid metabolism, thyroid disruption, altered menstrual cycling, and cardiovascular effects.

In laboratory animals, dioxins are known to cause a variety of effects including cancer and impaired reproductive, endocrine, cardiovascular, immune, respiratory, neurological and metabolic function. In addition, dioxins cause skin disease and birth defects.

In dioxin family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

  • geometric mean: 1.12 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 2.39 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 1 of 10 people in the group (vs. 658 of 4,821 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #2
3.15pg/g lipids in blood serum14.5


Chlorinated furans, also called chlorinated dibenzofurans or CDFs, are toxic, persistent, bioaccumulative, and lipophilic ("fat-loving""). This means that CDFs build up and are stored in fatty tissues and fluid, such as breast milk, and can be passed on to fetuses and infants during pregnancy and lactation.

In humans, CDFs are associated with premature birth and abnormal development, liver toxicity, skin disease, eye inflammation, and damage to the nervous, immune, endocrine, and reproductive systems (ATSDR 1994b).

In laboratory animals, CDFs are known to cause a variety of effects including damage to the reproductive, endocrine, immune, and nervous systems. In addition, CDFs harm the kidneys and gastrointestinal tract, and cause birth defects (ATSDR 1994b).

In chlorinated furan family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

  • geometric mean: 1.11 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 1.87 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 1 of 10 people in the group (vs. 15 of 4,821 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #5
0.23pg/g lipids in blood serum10


In chlorinated furan family of chemicals - pollutants from PVC production, industrial bleaching, incineration; cause cancer, may harm hormone system.

  • geometric mean: 1.56 pg/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 2.72 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 19 of 34 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #10, Baby #8, Baby #5, Baby #2
2.26pg/g lipids in blood serum11.7


metals

1 of 1 found

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


organochlorine pesticides (ocs)

21 of 28 found

Includes DDT, chlordane, other pesticides. Largely banned in the U.S. Build up in the human body over time. Cause cancer and reproductive harm.

0.615ng/g lipids in blood serum2830


Total Organochlorine Pesticides (OCs)

  • geometric mean: 1.04 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0914 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 1 of 10 people in the group (vs. 4 of 27 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #1
0.122ng/g lipids in blood serum4.53


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.0948ng/g lipids in blood serum2560


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.008ng/g lipids in blood serum0.345


0.0114ng/g lipids in blood serum0.307


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.0251ng/g lipids in blood serum7.75


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

  • geometric mean: 0.0426 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0275 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 7 of 27 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #3, Baby #10, Baby #2, Baby #4
0.0276ng/g lipids in blood serum0.827


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.0353ng/g lipids in blood serum37.1


  • geometric mean: 0.167 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0431 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 8 of 27 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #10, Baby #7, Baby #3, Baby #5, Baby #4, Baby #8
0.048ng/g lipids in blood serum0.361


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.0972ng/g lipids in blood serum7.4


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

1.15ng/g lipids in blood serum35.2


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

  • geometric mean: 0.137 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0185 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 10 people in the group (vs. 4 of 27 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #5, Baby #1
0.0257ng/g lipids in blood serum2.32


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

  • geometric mean: 0.0251 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 3 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 5 of 10 people in the group (vs. 3 of 2,547 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #6, Baby #5, Baby #1, Baby #2, Baby #9
0.0159ng/g lipids in blood serum0.94


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.05ng/g lipids in blood serum0.995


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.0786ng/g lipids in blood serum1.28


0.0048ng/g lipids in blood serum0.251


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.0876ng/g lipids in blood serum12.6


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.0899ng/g lipids in blood serum24.4


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.0591ng/g lipids in blood serum11.3


  • geometric mean: 0.0222 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.024 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 10 of 18 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #10, Baby #2, Baby #3, Baby #1, Baby #4, Baby #6
0.00906ng/g lipids in blood serum0.291


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.625ng/g lipids in blood serum35.7


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

0.31ng/g lipids in blood serum86.4


perfluorochemicals (pfcs)

9 of 12 found

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

0.736ng/g in whole blood27.8


Total Perfluorochemicals (PFCs)

Breakdown product of stain- and grease-proof coatings on food packaging, couches, carpets. A 10-carbon version of PFOA; persistent; bioaccumulative.

  • geometric mean: 0.00936 ng/g in whole blood (vs. 0.0115 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 3 of 10 people in the group (vs. 6 of 23 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #8, Baby #10, Baby #7
0.012ng/g in whole blood0.263


Breakdown product of stain- and grease-proof coatings on food packaging, couches, carpets. A 7-carbon version of PFOA; persistent.

0.047ng/g in whole blood0.324


Breakdown product of stain- and grease-proof coatings on food packaging and household products. Highly persistent in people and the environment.

0.241ng/g in whole blood0.778


Breakdown product of stain- and grease-proof coatings on food packaging, couches, carpets. A 9-carbon version of PFOA; persistent; bioaccumulative.

0.001ng/g in whole blood0.686


Used to make Teflon pan coatings; breakdown product of stain- and grease-proof coatings. Likely human carcinogen. Found in most people. Being phased out of some products.

0.176ng/g in whole blood4.2


Breakdown product of stain- and grease-proof coatings on food packaging, couches, carpets. A 5-carbon version of PFOA; persistent.

  • geometric mean: 0.192 ng/g in whole blood (vs. 0.174 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 10 people in the group (vs. 2 of 23 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #8, Baby #7
0.324ng/g in whole blood0.432


Breakdown product of stain- and grease-proof coatings on food packaging, couches, carpets. An 11-carbon version of PFOA; persistent; bioaccumulative.

  • geometric mean: 0.00296 ng/g in whole blood (vs. 0.00296 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 7 of 23 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #9, Baby #8, Baby #7, Baby #10
0.002ng/g in whole blood0.149


In fire fighting foams and carpet treatments. Phased out of consumer products by 3M in 2000 over health concerns.

0.391ng/g in whole blood5.52


Active ingredient in Scotchgard prior to 2000. Phase out forced by EPA because concentrations in human blood close to levels that harm lab animals.

0.352ng/g in whole blood16.2


polyaromatic hydrocarbons (pahs)

9 of 18 found

Pollutants from burning gasoline and garbage. Linked to cancer. Accumulate in food chain.

  • geometric mean: 279 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 230 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 5 people in the group (vs. 8 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #8, Baby #6, Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #1
130ng/g lipids in blood serum384


Total Polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)

  • geometric mean: 27.8 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 24.3 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 5 people in the group (vs. 8 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #6, Baby #8, Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #1
14.7ng/g lipids in blood serum40.2


  • geometric mean: 1.38 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 1.22 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 1 of 5 people in the group (vs. 1 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #6
4.96ng/g lipids in blood serum4.96


  • geometric mean: 14.9 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 12.9 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 5 people in the group (vs. 8 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #8, Baby #6, Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #1
9.44ng/g lipids in blood serum23.2


PAHs are toxic byproduct of combustion. Humans exposed through air or diet. Probable carcinogens. In animals cause birth defects, affect skin, blood, reproductive and immune systems.

  • geometric mean: 15.6 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 15.2 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 5 people in the group (vs. 8 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #6, Baby #8, Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #1
10ng/g lipids in blood serum21.3


  • geometric mean: 26.8 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 23.2 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 5 people in the group (vs. 8 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #8, Baby #6, Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #1
14ng/g lipids in blood serum42.1


  • geometric mean: 121 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 70.4 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 5 people in the group (vs. 8 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #8, Baby #6, Baby #5, Baby #2, Baby #1
17.8ng/g lipids in blood serum199


  • geometric mean: 2.79 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 3.13 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 5 people in the group (vs. 4 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #8, Baby #6
6.82ng/g lipids in blood serum15.3


  • geometric mean: 38.7 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 35.9 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 5 people in the group (vs. 8 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #6, Baby #8, Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #1
24.2ng/g lipids in blood serum51.2


  • geometric mean: 19.6 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 21.3 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 5 people in the group (vs. 8 of 8 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #1, Baby #8, Baby #6, Baby #5, Baby #2
8.89ng/g lipids in blood serum89.7


polybrominated diphenyl ethers (pbdes)

27-32 of 46 found

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

1.11ng/g lipids in blood serum314


Total Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs)

Brominated fire retardants currently used in plastics and fabric. The major use is in electronic devices; the minor use is as a backcoating on industrial fabrics. Are directly toxic to mammals and breakdown to more dangerous forms in the environment.

A fire retardant used in TVs, monitors and electronics. Growing evidence that chemical breaks down in the environment to more persistent and toxic forms.

  • geometric mean: 0.479 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 3 of 10 people in the group (vs. 37 of 116 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #3, Baby #5, Baby #4
ng/g lipids in blood serum270


Brominated fire retardants used in polyurethan foam and plastics. These PBDEs are neurotoxic and persist in people and the environment. They were withdrawn from the market in the U.S. in 2005.

  • geometric mean: 0.0103 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00745 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 7 of 76 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #3, Baby #4, Baby #9
0.0134ng/g lipids in blood serum0.039


  • geometric mean: 0.0162 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0087 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 8 of 76 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #10, Baby #3, Baby #9, Baby #4, Baby #6, Baby #8
0.0151ng/g lipids in blood serum0.0606


0.00566ng/g lipids in blood serum3.23


Brominated flame retardants used in plastics. Break down into more toxic and persistent forms in the environment. Withdrawn from the market in the U.S. in 2005.

0.0122ng/g lipids in blood serum4.31


Brominated fire retardants used in foam and plastics. Break down into more toxic and persistent forms in the environment. Withdrawn from the market in the U.S. in 2005.

  • geometric mean: 0.0233 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0313 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 51 of 116 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #2, Baby #4, Baby #9, Baby #3
0.0262ng/g lipids in blood serum0.59


  • geometric mean: 0.0129 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0176 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 10 people in the group (vs. 55 of 76 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #10, Baby #8, Baby #9, Baby #3, Baby #6
0.0025ng/g lipids in blood serum0.54


0.238ng/g lipids in blood serum76.9


0.0068ng/g lipids in blood serum2.73


0.0184ng/g lipids in blood serum0.488


Brominated fire retardants currently used in plastics and fabric. The major use is in electronic devices; the minor use is as a backcoating on industrial fabrics. Are directly toxic to mammals and breakdown to more dangerous forms in the environment.

  • geometric mean: 0.0455 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 3 of 10 people in the group (vs. 24 of 116 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #1, Baby #5, Baby #4
ng/g lipids in blood serum19.9


ng/g lipids in blood serum19


  • geometric mean: 0.143 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 29 of 116 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #8, Baby #7, Baby #9, Baby #5, Baby #1, Baby #4
ng/g lipids in blood serum14.7


Brominated flame retardants used in plastics. Break down into more toxic and persistent forms in the environment. Withdrawn from the market in the U.S. in 2005.

ng/g lipids in blood serum16.5


Brominated fire retardants used in polyurethan foam and plastics. These PBDEs are neurotoxic and persist in people and the environment. They were withdrawn from the market in the U.S. in 2005.

0.00528ng/g lipids in blood serum32.6


  • geometric mean: 0.0043 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.839 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 512 of 2,337 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #5, Baby #4, Baby #6, Baby #7, Baby #9, Baby #3
0.000971ng/g lipids in blood serum2.27


In PBDE chemical family - fire retardant in furniture foam, computers, televisions; may harm brain development and hormone systems.

  • geometric mean: 0.0965 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 4.32 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 1,395 of 2,337 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #6, Baby #9, Baby #3
0.0786ng/g lipids in blood serum31.2


Brominated fire retardants used in polyurethan foam and plastics. These PBDEs are neurotoxic and persist in people and the environment. They were withdrawn from the market in the U.S. in 2005.

In PBDE chemical family - fire retardant in furniture foam, computers, televisions; may harm brain development and hormone systems.

0.33ng/g lipids in blood serum143


0.0158ng/g lipids in blood serum1.26


  • geometric mean: 0.00625 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00557 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 10 people in the group (vs. 28 of 76 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #6
0.00522ng/g lipids in blood serum0.191


0.0224ng/g lipids in blood serum1.33


  • geometric mean: 0.00784 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00579 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 10 people in the group (vs. 23 of 116 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #9, Baby #6
0.008ng/g lipids in blood serum0.273


  • geometric mean: 0.012 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0163 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 3 of 10 people in the group (vs. 44 of 76 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #9, Baby #4, Baby #7
0.00643ng/g lipids in blood serum0.823


Brominated fire retardants used in polyurethan foam and plastics. These PBDEs are neurotoxic and persist in people and the environment. They were withdrawn from the market in the U.S. in 2005.

0.0141ng/g lipids in blood serum0.673


0.0385ng/g lipids in blood serum6.17


0.00307ng/g lipids in blood serum0.0211


  • geometric mean: 0.00937 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00639 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 10 people in the group (vs. 16 of 76 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #3, Baby #9, Baby #8, Baby #10, Baby #7
0.00866ng/g lipids in blood serum0.386


polychlorinated biphenyls (pcbs)

98-147 of 209 found

Banned industrial insulators and lubricants. Cause cancer and nervous system problems.

2.95ng/g lipids in blood serum600


Total Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)

In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.00655ng/g lipids in blood serum19.4


0.0237ng/g lipids in blood serum0.583


0.00174ng/g lipids in blood serum0.0531


  • geometric mean: 0.00584 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00117 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 12 of 26 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #10, Baby #2, Baby #3, Baby #5, Baby #7, Baby #4
0.0004ng/g lipids in blood serum0.09


0.00262ng/g lipids in blood serum0.122


0.00221ng/g lipids in blood serum0.0163


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.00685ng/g lipids in blood serum5.08


  • geometric mean: 0.00811 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00658 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 13 of 25 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #9, Baby #2, Baby #10
0.00359ng/g lipids in blood serum0.0555


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0371ng/g lipids in blood serum34.3


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.00898ng/g lipids in blood serum3.67


0.0102ng/g lipids in blood serum5.76


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0017ng/g lipids in blood serum3.08


  • geometric mean: 0.00569 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0185 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 10 people in the group (vs. 17 of 26 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #2, Baby #8
0.00945ng/g lipids in blood serum0.402


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0201ng/g lipids in blood serum6.74


0.0119ng/g lipids in blood serum10


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

  • geometric mean: 0.00266 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0157 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 10 people in the group (vs. 25 of 35 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #4, Baby #2, Baby #5, Baby #8, Baby #9
0.00288ng/g lipids in blood serum3.65


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.211ng/g lipids in blood serum112


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0556ng/g lipids in blood serum8.68


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0607ng/g lipids in blood serum36.4


  • geometric mean: 0.00645 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 3.18 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 6 of 2,547 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #4, Baby #7, Baby #10, Baby #9, Baby #2, Baby #8
0.00419ng/g lipids in blood serum1.61


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0136ng/g lipids in blood serum5.15


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0131ng/g lipids in blood serum8.96


0.000758ng/g lipids in blood serum3.83


0.297ng/g lipids in blood serum72.6


0.00898ng/g lipids in blood serum2.63


  • geometric mean: 0.000625 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00371 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 3 of 10 people in the group (vs. 14 of 26 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #9, Baby #3, Baby #4
0.000787ng/g lipids in blood serum0.179


0.00537ng/g lipids in blood serum2.01


0.00393ng/g lipids in blood serum0.923


  • geometric mean: 0.000467 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00112 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 13 of 26 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #2, Baby #10, Baby #8
0.000503ng/g lipids in blood serum0.0487


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0184ng/g lipids in blood serum3.95


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

  • geometric mean: 0.000726 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0019 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 3 of 10 people in the group (vs. 11 of 35 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #10, Baby #7, Baby #9
0.000755ng/g lipids in blood serum1.81


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0243ng/g lipids in blood serum14


  • geometric mean: 0.00135 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0135 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 5 of 10 people in the group (vs. 19 of 26 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #3, Baby #2, Baby #8, Baby #9, Baby #7
0.000787ng/g lipids in blood serum0.457


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.379ng/g lipids in blood serum96.5


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0236ng/g lipids in blood serum14.6


0.00322ng/g lipids in blood serum0.864


  • geometric mean: 0.00292 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0056 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 12 of 26 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #5, Baby #3, Baby #7, Baby #9
0.0034ng/g lipids in blood serum0.14


0.00631ng/g lipids in blood serum3.83


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.00401ng/g lipids in blood serum1.74


0.00266ng/g lipids in blood serum0.319


  • geometric mean: 0.00796 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0222 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 4 of 10 people in the group (vs. 18 of 25 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #10, Baby #9, Baby #8
0.00322ng/g lipids in blood serum0.418


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0102ng/g lipids in blood serum29


  • geometric mean: 0.00761 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00874 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 14 of 35 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #6, Baby #3, Baby #7, Baby #9, Baby #8, Baby #2
0.00379ng/g lipids in blood serum1.7


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.00152ng/g lipids in blood serum13.7


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0379ng/g lipids in blood serum34


0.0182ng/g lipids in blood serum5.57


0.034ng/g lipids in blood serum12.3


  • geometric mean: 0.00311 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00716 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 10 people in the group (vs. 12 of 26 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #8
0.00537ng/g lipids in blood serum0.207


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.0422ng/g lipids in blood serum40


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

  • geometric mean: 0.00537 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 5.09 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 5 of 10 people in the group (vs. 923 of 2,547 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #3, Baby #4, Baby #2, Baby #8
0.00604ng/g lipids in blood serum17.4


0.0106ng/g lipids in blood serum11.7


0.0393ng/g lipids in blood serum22.4


  • geometric mean: 0.00422 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00972 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 3 of 10 people in the group (vs. 17 of 35 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #2, Baby #10, Baby #8
0.00591ng/g lipids in blood serum0.53


  • geometric mean: 0.00336 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0149 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 7 of 10 people in the group (vs. 19 of 26 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #5, Baby #2, Baby #3, Baby #4, Baby #9, Baby #7, Baby #8
0.000971ng/g lipids in blood serum0.805


  • geometric mean: 0.0111 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 4.46 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 95 of 4,821 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #3, Baby #9, Baby #2, Baby #8, Baby #4
0.0104ng/g lipids in blood serum13.1


0.00874ng/g lipids in blood serum4.98


  • geometric mean: 0.000283 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.00285 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 2 of 10 people in the group (vs. 14 of 26 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #7, Baby #4
0.000336ng/g lipids in blood serum0.212


0.00322ng/g lipids in blood serum0.353


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

  • geometric mean: 0.00596 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 3.2 in CDC biomonitoring [1])
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 25 of 2,547 in CDC biomonitoring)
  • found in: Baby #8, Baby #3, Baby #7, Baby #2, Baby #9, Baby #4
0.0051ng/g lipids in blood serum3.39


  • geometric mean: 0.00854 ng/g lipids in blood serum (vs. 0.0275 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in 6 of 10 people in the group (vs. 22 of 35 in all EWG/Commonweal studies)
  • found in: Baby #4, Baby #7, Baby #9, Baby #10, Baby #2, Baby #8
0.00838ng/g lipids in blood serum1.96


0.00148ng/g lipids in blood serum0.836


In polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) family of chemicals - banned industrial insulators and lubricants; cause cancer and nervous system problems.

0.212ng/g lipids in blood serum30.8