U-M study shows BPA exposure in fetal livers

December 03, 2012

ANN ARBOR--New research from the University of Michigan School of Public Health found BPA, or bisphenol A, in fetal liver tissue, demonstrating that there is considerable exposure to the chemical during pregnancy.

Researchers also found a proportionately higher concentration of free BPA--as opposed to the conjugated forms modified by the body for elimination--further showing that in fetuses the ability to eliminate the chemical from the body is not the same as in adults.

"The general message from our research is that people have to be cognizant of the fact that the adult body may be able to deal with a particular exposure but a developing fetus may not," said Muna Nahar, doctoral student in the School of Public Health's Department of Environmental Health Sciences and first author on the paper.

Previous animal studies have associated BPA with breast and prostate cancer, and reproductive and behavioral abnormalities. Some research on effects to human health has tied BPA to cardiovascular disease, miscarriage, decreased semen quality and childhood behavioral issues. The chemical also may impact metabolism, diabetes and obesity, although more studies are required to determine its effects.

Prior research on BPA--a chemical used in many consumer products, including plastic bottles and metal food and beverage cans--has measured concentrations of the chemical in urine. About 95 percent of those who have been tested in a nationally representative health survey study show some level of BPA, but the research to date had yet to firmly establish the presence of the chemical in tissues.

Understanding the internal dose is essential to determine adverse effects on health, the researchers say. BPA can reach the body through ingestion, inhalation and by contact with the skin.

Nahar and colleagues Dana Dolinoy of the U-M School of Public Health and Chunyang Liao and Kurunthachalam Kannan of the Wadsworth Center at the New York State Department of Health studied the livers of 50 first- and second-trimester fetuses, using high-performance liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry. They found wide variances in how much BPA was present in livers, with some fetuses showing high levels of exposure.

"The finding of free BPA in fetuses is significant," said Dana Dolinoy, the John G. Searle Assistant Professor of Environmental Health Sciences and senior/corresponding author of the study.

After measuring a three-times-higher concentration of free BPA than the conjugated forms in the fetal livers, the researchers then examined the enzymes responsible for metabolizing the chemical and compared them with those at work in adult male and female livers.

"Our research shows that the argument that it's so rapidly metabolized is not true in fetuses," Dolinoy said.
-end-
The study appears online in the Journal of Biochemical and Molecular Toxicology, which in early 2013 will publish a special print issue focusing on the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Outstanding New Environmental Scientist Award (ONES) projects. Dolinoy was awarded a five-year ONES grant in 2009 for the project titled "In Utero Exposure to Bisphenol A: Effects on the Fetal Epigenome."

Dana Dolinoy: www.sph.umich.edu/iscr/faculty/profile.cfm?uniqname=ddolinoy

Muna Nahar: http://research.sph.umich.edu/person.cfm?deptID=2&groupID=32&ownerID=478

School of Public Health: www.sph.umich.edu/index.html

View a Risk Bites video that explains BPA: http://youtu.be/219JRH3dEwg (Risk Bites are short insights into the science of risk, produced by Andrew Maynard at the U-M Risk Science Center.)

University of Michigan

Related Prostate Cancer Articles from Brightsurf:

Low risk of cancer spread on active surveillance for early prostate cancer
Men undergoing active surveillance for prostate cancer have very low rates - one percent or less - of cancer spread (metastases) or death from prostate cancer, according to a recent study published in the Journal of Urology®, an Official Journal of the American Urological Association (AUA).

ESMO 2020: Breast cancer drug set to transform prostate cancer treatment
A drug used to treat breast and ovarian cancer can extend the lives of some men with prostate cancer and should become a new standard treatment for the disease, concludes a major trial which is set to change clinical practice.

Major trial shows breast cancer drug can hit prostate cancer Achilles heel
A drug already licensed for the treatment of breast and ovarian cancers is more effective than targeted hormone therapy at keeping cancer in check in some men with advanced prostate cancer, a major clinical trial reports.

The Lancet: Prostate cancer study finds molecular imaging could transform management of patients with aggressive cancer
Results from a randomised controlled trial involving 300 prostate cancer patients find that a molecular imaging technique is more accurate than conventional medical imaging and recommends the scans be introduced into routine clinical practice.

Common genetic defect in prostate cancer inspires path to new anti-cancer drugs
Researchers found that, in prostate cancer, a mutation leading to the loss of one allele of a tumor suppressor gene known as PPP2R2A is enough to worsen a tumor caused by other mutations.

First prostate cancer therapy to target genes delays cancer progression
For the first time, prostate cancer has been treated based on the genetic makeup of the cancer, resulting in delayed disease progression, delayed time to pain progression, and potentially extending lives in patients with advanced, metastatic prostate cancer, reports a large phase 3 trial.

Men taking medications for enlarged prostate face delays in prostate cancer diagnosis
University of California San Diego School of Medicine researchers report that men treated with medications for benign prostatic hyperplasia (enlarged prostate) experienced a two-year delay in diagnosis of their prostate cancer and were twice as likely to have advanced disease upon diagnosis.

CNIO researchers confirm links between aggressive prostate cancer and hereditary breast cancer
The study has potential implications for families with members suffering from these types of tumours who are at an increased risk of developing cancer.

Distinguishing fatal prostate cancer from 'manageable' cancer now possible
Scientists at the University of York have found a way of distinguishing between fatal prostate cancer and manageable cancer, which could reduce unnecessary surgeries and radiotherapy.

Researchers find prostate cancer drug byproduct can fuel cancer cells
A genetic anomaly in certain men with prostate cancer may impact their response to common drugs used to treat the disease, according to new research at Cleveland Clinic.

Read More: Prostate Cancer News and Prostate Cancer Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.