- About Breast Cancer
- Reduce Your Risk
- Our Research
- Get Involved
- About Us
4 months ago
The research, published in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology, measured BPA in human urine using a “direct” analytical method rather than the standard two stage test used by most laboratories. The results showed levels of BPA in test subjects to be up to 44 times greater than those obtained using the standard method (1).
This is a concern because BPA, a component of some plastics and until recently used in thermal till receipts, is classified as a Substance of Very High Concern by the EU, due to its hormone disrupting properties and reproductive toxicity. Evidence strongly suggests long-term BPA exposure increases risk of breast cancer and other illnesses. Exposure in utero is of particular concern.
In a published comment on the study, Breast Cancer UK grant recipients Kerri Palmer and Professor Valerie Speirs highlight the role of BPA as an oestrogen mimic as well as its ability to affect other sex hormones which may influence the risk of breast cancer and other hormone-related diseases.
According to Kerri Palmer “We’re concerned that widely accepted analytical methods may be underestimating the levels of BPA. The ubiquitous use of this chemical in everyday products means we may be continuously exposed at higher levels than previously thought throughout our lifetime. Being able to accurately determine BPA levels is fundamental to understanding its potential effects on human health.”
It may not only be BPA levels that are being underestimated. The same type of indirect technique is used to measure bisphenol substitutes (which are routinely replacing BPA in consumer goods) as well as other types of endocrine disrupting chemicals such as phthalates and parabens.
(1) In the human body, orally ingested BPA is rapidly converted to BPA metabolites (BPA- glucuronide and BPA-sulphate) which are excreted in the urine. The standard method relies on these being converted back to free BPA, using an enzyme obtained from snails. It turns out this conversion step is less efficient than previously thought and so not all BPA metabolites are converted to free BPA. The new method measures the metabolites directly.
Gerona, R. et al. (2020). BPA: have flawed analytical techniques compromised risk assessments? The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology Correspondence Volume 8, Issue 1, p11-13, published January 01, 2020. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/landia/article/PIIS2213-8587(19)30381-X/fulltext
Palmer, K. and Speirs, V. (2020). BPA and risk assessment. The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology Correspondence Volume 8, Issue 4, p269, published April 01, 2020. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/landia/article/PIIS2213-8587(20)30068-1/fulltext
5 August 2020
A year ago Breast Cancer UK had so much to celebrate. We were a growing charity at the top of our game and had just hired some key staff to...Read full story
22 July 2020
Breast Cancer UK is delighted to be the chosen charity by one of our supporters who is aiming to do a solo swim of the English Channel. Please support him...Read full story
29 April 2020
to save our breast cancer research. Breast Cancer UK has launched an Emergency Appeal to counteract the negative consequences caused by Coronavirus. Like many other voluntary organisations, the charity has suffered a devastating financial drop in its income (by around...Read full story
4 December 2019
As part of Breast Cancer UK’s work to highlight the dangers of hormone disrupting chemicals (EDCs), our Public Affairs officer, Kit Bowerin, joined the EDC-Free Alliance in Brussels to talk...Read full story
A donation of just £10 can help us reach out to new mums with educational information and guidance on how they can protect the future health of their children.
A donation of £25 can help provide a Breast Cancer Prevention kit to help our Ambassadors deliver talks, providing healthy lifestyle advice and practical tips that can help people reduce their risk of breast cancer.
Your donation of £100 can help train one of our PhD students, who work on vital research which aims to understand the causes of breast cancer and identify risk factors.
Just want to help in some way? donate an amount that feels right for you
New easy way for you to donate to Breast Cancer UK:
Donate £5 please text to 70970