The news about bisphenol A (BPA) keeps being bad. First, there were reports that the chemical used in food and drink containers may cause birth defects and developmental problems in children. And the compound used to make polymers and plastics has also been linked to cancer.
Now, researchers say that the chemical may be tied to arterial narrowing and therefore heart disease. The new coronary artery disease study is based on data from almost 600 participating men and women in the U.K., reports U.S. News and World Report’s HealthDay.
“Our latest study strengthens a growing body of work that suggests that BPA may be adding to known risk factors for heart disease,” says study author David Melzer, professor of epidemiology and public health at the Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry at the University of Exeter. A paper summarizing the results was published in PLoS ONE.
The researchers divided the study group into three parts: those with severe coronary artery disease, those with moderate disease, and those with no signs of coronary disease. They then measured the level of BPA found in each participant’s urine.
The scientists found that those with severe coronary artery disease had “significantly” higher levels of urinary BPA. “These results are important because they give us a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying the association between BPA and heart disease,” says Tamara Galloway, the study’s lead toxicologist.
The researchers caution that their study found only an association between arterial narrowing and BPA levels in urine. The study did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.
Source: “High BPA Levels Seen in People With Narrowed Arteries: Study,” HealthDay, 8/15/12
Image by cyclonebill.
Dale McGeehon has been a journalist and editor for more than 25 years, covering chemical regulation and testing for Pesticides and Toxic Chemical News and innovations in material sciences for the National Technology Transfer Center. His writing credits include Omni and College Park magazines and The New York Times.