BFRs such as polybrominated diphenyl ethers
(PBDEs) are known to interfere with the endocrine or hormone system, the group explained.
In 2004, polybrominated diphenyl ethers
(PBDEs) flame retardants started to be phased out due to environmental and health concerns.
Polybrominated diphenyl ethers
(PBDEs) were observed in 75 per cent of the samples tested, despite being phased out of use in the US in 2013 over health concerns, while decabromodiphenyl ethane (DBDPE) was detected in four samples at high levels, suggesting that it was intentionally used.
'As people replace their old furniture, we've seen a reduction in exposures to the earlier generation of flame retardants, polybrominated diphenyl ethers
, or PBDEs,' said Herbstman.
Owing to a legacy of pollution related to the past use of commercial polybrominated diphenyl ethers
(PBDEs) as flame retardants, humans today are exposed to combinations of multiple PBDE congeners.
Reed, "Polybrominated diphenyl ethers
(PBDEs): new pollutants-old diseases," Clinical Medicine and Research, vol.
The toxic compounds are known as polybrominated diphenyl ethers
(PBDEs), a subgroup of brominated flame retardants that are combined into foam, textiles and electronics to raise the temperature at which the products will burn.
The current version of the EU RoHS Directive (ec.europa.eu/environment/waste/rohs_eee/) limits the use of lead, mercury, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyls and polybrominated diphenyl ethers
to 0.1%, and for cadmium to 0.01% concentration levels in individual homogenous materials.
A team of scientists from Cardiff University, working in collaboration with the universities of Saskatchewan and Exeter, and the Natural Environment Research Council, suggest that urban contaminants such as PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) and PBDE flameretardant chemicals (polybrominated diphenyl ethers
) acquired through their food are to blame.
These are Manganese, a chemical present in drinking water, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), chlorpyrifos, tetrachloroethylene (PERC), Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers
(PBDE) and fluoride, present in toothpaste, which is safe to use except for children below two years of age.
Since polybrominated diphenyl ethers
(PBDEs) and hBcD (and ~20% of the production of TBBP-A) are blended physically rather than bonded chemically to polymeric materials, they migrate into the environment where their persistence and bioaccumulative characters lead to contamination of humans .