A new study published online on January 7, 2014 in the peer-reviewed scientific journal Endocrinology found low dose bisphenol A (BPA) exposure to be linked to prostate cancer in humans. Earlier studies found early life exposure to BPA associated with later life carcinogenesis in mice. In the present study, researchers from the University of Illinois, U.S., implanted human prostate cells into mice to investigate effects of early life exposure on disease in later life. The prostate cells were taken from deceased young men. Mice were fed BPA during the first 2 weeks of life. 45% of cells implanted in exposed mice developed precancerous or cancerous lesions compared to only 12% of cells in unexposed mice. In an article published by the online environment news agency Environmental Health News, Gail Prins, lead author of the study, comments that the early life exposure is thought to reprogram stem cells, which replenish organs with cells throughout life. Brian Bienkowski, journalist for Environmental Health News, however, also reports contentions regarding the experiments. The chemical trade association American Chemistry Council criticized that the model of implanting stem cells into mice has yet to be validated.
Brian Bienkowski (January 7, 2013). “BPA exposure linked to prostate cancer.” Environmental Health News.
Prins, G. (2014). “Bisphenol A promotes human prostate stem-progenitor cell self-renewal and Increases in vivo carcinogenesis in human prostate epithelium.” Endocrinology (published online January 7, 2014).