30 August 1999 00:00 [Source: ICB Americas]A panel of scientists convened by the federal government to evaluate the toxicity of seven phthalate plasticizers was unable to reach a final consensus after three days of deliberation in Alexandria, Va.
Peggy Sheren of the Center for the Evaluation of Risks to Human Reproduction (Cerhr) says that because of the large volume of data to be considered, the panel was unable to complete its assessment of the chemicals. The panel plans to reconvene later, but she says no date has been set.
Cerhr, which part of the National Toxicology Program at the National Institute of Environmental Health Science, assembled 15 scientists to evaluate the plasticizers, which are used in the manufacture of flexible vinyl products.
The panel reviewed butyl benzl phthalate, di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate, di-isodecyl phthalate, di-isononyl phthalate, di-n-butyl phthalate, di-n-hexyl phthalate and di-n-octyl phthalate.
The group plans to produce a monograph of its assessment of the chemicals, which some scientists have linked to reproductive and other health hazards.
Studies evaluated by the panel include research by the Chemical Manufacturers Association, Health Care Without Harm, and the American Council on Science and Health. Using a weight of evidence approach, the panel plans to integrate the information and reach conclusions on whether any of the phthalate plasticizers pose potential risks to human reproduction and development.
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