Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Flame retardants and autism

As I have written about before, exposure to flame retardants could be problematic.  Now, a new review published in Physiology & Behavior talks about how exposure to flame retardants could be a risk factor for autism.

Mini-review: Polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) flame retardants as potential autism risk factors.
Brominated flame retardants, including Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) have been used at increasing levels in home furnishings and electronics over the past 25 years. They have also become widespread environmental pollutants. High PBDE levels have been detected in food, household dust, and indoor air, with subsequent appearance in animal and human tissues. This minireview summarizes studies on the extent to which these compounds can act as potent thyroid hormone mimetics, and emerging studies on long-term neurological effects of acute administration of PBDEs during development. When these data are considered in combination with the extensive literature on stage-dependent effects of thyroid hormone on aspects of brain development that are also implicated in autistic brains, a hypothesis that PBDEs might also serve as autism risk factors emerges.
I have not read the study as of yet but I think the abstract makes it pretty clear what the authors are thinking.


  1. Hi AutismJabberwocky -

    You might be interested in some of these studies.

    We are doomed.

    - pD

  2. I will take a look at them, thanks.