Categories: Health & Fitness

An alternative to phthalates would be harmful for development and brain health

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Growing concerns about the health hazards of phthalates have pushed manufacturers and consumers to find alternative compounds to replace them. Because the phthalates are chemicals present in many consumer products (food packaging, toys, vinyl flooring, cosmetics, household cleaning products, paints, etc.).

In a new study, presented at Discover BMB, the annual meeting of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, researchers report observing brain damage of a product presented as an alternative to phthalates, or even as the most used alternative. It’s about chemical acetyl tributyl citrate (ATBC)approved for materials in contact with food, but also for cosmetics or toys.

Our study suggests that ATBC […] could interfere with cells that maintain brain health. We think that this finding warrants further ATBC testing at different doses, in different settings and in whole organism models “, commented Kyle Sease, researcher at Central Washington University, and co-author of the study, in a press release (Source 1).

Here, the research team cultured neuroblastoma cells, a malignant tumor that behaves like glial cells of the brain in terms of growth and division. Glial cells are specialized brain cells whose function is to surround, support and insulate nerve cells (in other words neurons). Using molecular methods, the team investigated how ATBC and other phthalate substitutes affected genes and processes involved in cell division. She then found that neuroblastoma cells exposed to ATBC increased two mechanisms (cellular stress and cellular senescence) that can cause cells to stop growing and dividing.

By extrapolation, this suggests that ATBC could thus interfere with the ability of glial cells to regenerate. What lead, in the long term, neurodegeneration and accelerated brain aging. It is also not excluded that ATBC can harm the normal development of the brain during the early phases of development, in other words in utero or during infancy.

The “good news” is that such an effect has no not observed for two other compounds used as a substitute for phthalates, such as bis (2-ethylhexyl)-1,4-benzenedicarboxylate (GPO) and dioctyl adipate (DOA).

#alternative #phthalates #harmful #development #brain #health

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