A new study published online on March 6, 2015 in the peer-reviewed journal Mutation Research/Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis shows a correlation between exposure to bisphenol A (BPA, CAS 80-05-7) and fetal malformations in humans. Guida and colleagues enrolled 151 pregnant women in three Italian cities (Naples, Salerno, Avellino). The mothers were divided into two groups. The first group (case group, N=101) consisted of women with established diagnosis of fetal malformation. The second group (control group, N=50) consisted of women with normally developing fetuses. Blood samples were collected from the mothers. The authors point out that in humans BPA is extensively conjugated into BPA-glucuronide and BPA-sulfate. The two metabolites are devoid of endocrine activity. Therefore, they analyzed the collected samples for total BPA (free plus conjugated) as well as free BPA and then calculated the levels of conjugated BPA from the difference between the determinations. The results suggest that there is a correlation between BPA exposure and development of fetal abnormalities. Conjugated BPA levels, which were higher in the control group, might indicate that a reduced ability of the mother to metabolize BPA can lead to fetal malformations. The average level of free BPA was almost three times higher than in the controls for chromosomal malformations and nearly two times higher in the case of central and peripheral nervous system non-chromosomal malformations. These findings led the authors to conclude that BPA exposure may play a role in abnormal development of the central and peripheral nervous system, which requires further investigation.

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Guida, M. et al. (2015). “Bisphenol A and congenital developmental defects in humans.Mutation Research/Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis (published online March 6, 2015).