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Posted Tue Jul 7 2009: from University of Michigan, via EurekAlert:
Phthalates may play a role in pre-term births
A new study of expectant mothers suggests that a group of common environmental contaminants called phthalates, which are present in many industrial and consumer products including everyday personal care items, may contribute to the country's alarming rise in premature births. Researchers at the University of Michigan School of Public Health found that women who deliver prematurely have, on average, up to three times the phthalate level in their urine compared to women who carry to term.... Phthalates are commonly used compounds in plastics, personal care products, home furnishings (vinyl flooring, carpeting, paints, etc.) and many other consumer and industrial products. The toxicity varies by specific phthalates or their breakdown products, but past studies show that several phthalates cause reproductive and developmental toxicity in animals.
[Read more stories about: phthalates, plastic problems]
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