Thursday, May 24, 2012

Chemical inheritance: Exposures affect future generations

Chemical exposures may have an effect on
future generations, researchers show.
It’s not only our own health we need to worry about when it comes to environmental pollution and chemical exposures - it's also our offspring we have to keep in mind.

According to a recent study by researchers at the University of Texas at Austin and Washington State University, animals whose ancestors were exposed to an environmental compound three generations earlier showed an increased reaction to stress.

In the study, female rats were exposed to a fungicide known to disrupt hormones. The researchers put the rats’ third generation of offspring through a variety of behavioral tests and found they were significantly more anxious and sensitive to stress than descendants of unexposed rats.

Third human generation since chemical revolution

The scientists chose the third generation specifically because we are now in the third human generation since the start of the chemical revolution, since humans have been exposed to these kinds of toxins.

This means that the chemical exposures of our great grandmothers could have programmed us in how we react to stress, the researchers say, which could explain why some people get post-traumatic stress syndrome while others do not.

In a previous study, the researchers already showed that ancestors’ environmental exposures altered how rats chose their mates.

The research could also provide answers about the rise in autism and bipolar disorder, the researchers say, and it might even provide some insight into the obesity epidemic.

Source: Washington State University

Keep chemical exposure to a minimum at home and at work

No matter where we are, we can be exposed to a toxic chemical soup coming from building materials, household products, equipment, personal care products, outdoor air pollution and more.

Along with source control and good ventilation, a portable air purifier with the right air filters can help reduce chemical exposures indoors and provide cleaner air.

AllerAir has developed air purifiers for the home and office with the most efficient and longest lasting air filters available, including a deep-bed activated carbon filter for the removal of airborne chemicals, gases, odors and fumes, a HEPA filter for particles and dust and optional UV germicidal filtration for biological contaminants such as bacteria, viruses and mold.

For more information and other specialized units, please contact AllerAir.

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