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Chemicals Found In Nonstick Pans Linked To Smaller Penises And Abnormal Sperm |

Chemicals Found In Nonstick Pans Linked To Smaller Penises And Abnormal Sperm

Perfluoroalkyl compounds (PFCs) are a class of chemicals whose unique atomic properties have been exploited to make numerous everyday products more convenient. Most notably PFCs make up the nonstick coating on cookware, provide water-, oil-, and stain-repellant surfaces for fabrics and carpeting, and are used to make grease-proof packaging for greasy foods. Yet, like so many ‘miracle’ chemicals discovered or created in the 20th century, PFCs have some seriously sinister effects that we have only recently begun to document and understand.

A growing pile of evidence has already quite convincingly established that PFCs may harm the human reproductive system by interfering with hormone signaling, and in the latest – and definitely most tangible – investigation into the chemicals’ impact, a team from the University of Padua, Italy, has found that young men who grew up in an area with PFC-contaminated drinking water have significantly smaller penises and less mobile sperm than those who grew up with clean water.


Taking the study one step further, first author Andrea Di Nisio and his colleagues used a series of lab-based cellular experiments to provide the first direct evidence that two of the most common PFCs, compounds called PFOA and PFOS, will readily bind to the testosterone receptor and block its activation. Their full results are published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology Metabolism.

“This study documents that PFCs have a substantial impact on human male health as they directly interfere with hormonal pathways potentially leading to male infertility,” they wrote. “We found that increased levels of PFCs in plasma and seminal fluid positively correlate with circulating testosterone and with a reduction of semen quality, testicular volume, penile length, and AGD [anogenital distance].” (Shortened AGD is a marker of abnormal male reproductive tract development.)

The Veneto region, which contains the province of Padua, is one of four locations in the world known to be heavily polluted with PFCs. The other members of this depressing club are the Dordrecht area of the Netherlands, the Shandong district in China, and the Mid-Ohio Valley of West Virginia, where a DuPont plant dumped a bunch of waste into a river (while covering up evidence of PFCs’ danger).

Category: Cookware Pans  Tags: ,  Comments off
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