In an article published on March 16, 2017 by news provider Environmental Health News, journalist Brian Bienkowski reported on a new study investigating the estrogenic activity of alternative chemicals to bisphenol A (BPA, CAS 80-05-7). The study was conducted by Robin Mesnage and colleagues from King’s College London, UK, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The study was preprinted online before it undergoes the peer-review process on the platform bioRxiv which is run by the private U.S. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. According to Mesnage, the authors decided to preprint the study because “public health data should be made public as soon as possible because it is of a critical interest for society.”

The researchers compared estrogenic activity of BPA to six bisphenol analogues: Bisphenol S (BPS, CAS 80-09-1), bisphenol F (BPF, CAS 620-92-8), bisphenol AP (BPAP, CAS 1571-75-1), bisphenol AF (BPAF, CAS 1478-61-1), bisphenol Z (BPZ, CAS 843-55-0), and bisphenol B (BPB, CAS 77-40-7). Estrogenicity was assessed in three human breast cancer cell lines, MCF-7, MDA-MB-231, and T47D, by looking at estrogen receptor (ER)-mediated cell proliferation, induction of estrogen response element (ERE)-mediated transcription, or changes in gene expression profiles. The researchers found that all bisphenols showed estrogenic activity, whereas BPAF was the most potent, followed by BPB > BPZ ~ BPA > BPF ~ BPAP > BPS. Mesnage and colleagues concluded that “BPA alternatives are not necessarily less estrogenic in a human breast cancer cell model,” and highlighted that “three bisphenols (BPAF, BPB, and BPZ) were more estrogenic than BPA.”

Read more

Brian Bienkowski (March 16, 2017). “BPA-free? Substitutions mimic hormones in breast cancer cells.Environmental Health News

ChemWatch (March 23, 2017). “BPA alternatives may mimic oestrogen in breast cancer cells.


Mesnage, R. et al. (2017). “Transcriptome profiling reveals bisphenol A alternatives 2 activate estrogen receptor alpha in human breast cancer cells.bioRxiv (preprint before peer-review; published online March 2, 2017; pdf).