2009 Study Abstract
There is growing interest in the possible health threat posed by endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs), which are substances in our environment, food, and consumer products that interfere with hormone biosynthesis, metabolism, or action resulting in a deviation from normal homeostatic control or reproduction.
In this first Scientific Statement of The Endocrine Society, we present the evidence that endocrine disruptors have effects on male and female reproduction, breast development and cancer, prostate cancer, neuroendocrinology, thyroid, metabolism and obesity, and cardiovascular endocrinology.
Results from animal models, human clinical observations, and epidemiological studies converge to implicate EDCs as a significant concern to public health. The mechanisms of EDCs involve divergent pathways including (but not limited to) estrogenic, antiandrogenic, thyroid, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ, retinoid, and actions through other nuclear receptors; steroidogenic enzymes; neurotransmitter receptors and systems; and many other pathways that are highly conserved in wildlife and humans, and which can be modeled in laboratory in vitro and in vivo models. Furthermore, EDCs represent a broad class of molecules such as organochlorinated pesticides and industrial chemicals, plastics and plasticizers, fuels, and many other chemicals that are present in the environment or are in widespread use.
We make a number of recommendations to increase understanding of effects of EDCs, including enhancing increased basic and clinical research, invoking the precautionary principle, and advocating involvement of individual and scientific society stakeholders in communicating and implementing changes in public policy and awareness.
- General Introduction to Endocrine Disruption
- Important issues in endocrine disruption
- The role of endocrinologists in discerning effects of EDCs
- Overview of Endocrine Disruption and Reproductive Health from a Clinical Perspective
- Clinical aspects of endocrine disruption in humans
- Clinical dimorphism of EDCs on male and female reproduction
- Experimental and clinical evidence of EDCs and potential mechanisms
- Clinical and Translational Impacts of EDCs on Female Reproduction
- Introduction to female reproductive development and function
- Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
- Premature ovarian failure, decreased ovarian reserve, aneuploidy, and granulosa steroidogenesis
- Reproductive tract anomalies
- Uterine leiomyomas
- Endocrine Disruptors, Mammary Gland Development, and Breast Cancer
- Windows of vulnerability to carcinogenic agents and “natural” risk factors
- Theories of carcinogenesis
- Susceptibility of the breast during puberty and adulthood
- Susceptibility of the mammary gland during the perinatal period
- Perinatal exposure to environmentally relevant levels of endocrine disruptors
- Male Reproductive and Developmental Health: The Human Evidence
- Introduction to male reproductive health
- Male reproductive function and development
- Semen quality: temporal trends and EDC exposure
- Male urogenital tract malformations
- Testicular germ cell cancer
- Prostate Cancer
- Introduction to prostate cancer
- Evidence and mechanisms for EDC effects on the prostate
- Neuroendocrine Targets of EDCs
- Endocrine disruption of reproductive neuroendocrine systems
- Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) effects of EDCs
- Thyroid, metabolism, and growth
- Hormonal targets of neuroendocrine disruption
- Thyroid Disruption
- Introduction to thyroid systems
- Environmental chemicals impacting thyroid function
- Environmental chemicals impacting thyroid hormone transport, metabolism, and clearance
- Environmental chemicals impacting the thyroid hormone receptor
- Environmental Chemicals, Obesity, and Metabolism
- Introduction to EDCs and the obesity epidemic
- Environmental estrogens and obesity
- Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) γ and organotins
- Endocrine disruptors, diabetes, and glucose homeostasis
- Endocrine disruptors and cardiovascular systems
- Estrogenic EDCs and cardioprotection
- Advanced glycation end-products (AGEs)
- Recommendations for the Future
- Linking basic research to clinical practice
- Endocrine disruption and the public
- Prevention and the “precautionary principle”
- Specific recommendations for future research
Read the full paper: Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals: An Endocrine Society Scientific Statement, NCBI PMCID: PMC2726844, Evanthia Diamanti-Kandarakis, Jean-Pierre Bourguignon, Linda C. Giudice, Russ Hauser, Gail S. Prins, Ana M. Soto, R. Thomas Zoeller, and Andrea C. Gore, doi: 10.1210/er.2009-0002, Endocr Rev. 2009 Jun; 30(4): 293–342.
- Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals: 2nd Endocrine Society Scientific Statement, 2015.
- Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals: 1st Endocrine Society Scientific Statement, 2009.
- Watch our DES and EDCs research gallery on Flickr.
- Watch our EDCs video playlist on YouTube.