Warning: Widely Used Chemical Linked to to Hyperthyroidism in Cats

Silicone pet tags, seen right here in purple, helped researchers measure housecats’ publicity to flame retardants. Credit score: Environmental Science & Know-how 2019

Feline hyperthyroidism is the commonest endocrine-related illness of older cats, and its prevalence has skyrocketed because the first case was identified in 1979. On the similar time, new family flame retardants had been launched, and just lately, scientists have suspected a hyperlink. Now, researchers reporting in ACS’ Environmental Science & Know-how have related hyperthyroidism with one other class of flame retardants, utilizing silicone pet tags related to the favored wristbands that many individuals put on for charitable causes.

Within the mid-Nineteen Seventies, producers started to put polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) into textiles, polyurethane foam, plastics, and electronics. However in 2004, U.S. producers began voluntarily phasing out these flame retardants amidst environmental and well being issues. Alternate options together with organophosphate esters (OPEs), resembling tris(1,3-dichloroisopropyl) phosphate (TDCIPP), had been added as a substitute, however current analysis suggests these flame retardants, like PBDEs, can act as endocrine disruptors. Prior analysis steered a hyperlink between PBDE ranges and feline hyperthyroidism, however to this point OPEs haven’t been examined in this context. Kim Anderson and colleagues puzzled if they may use silicone pet tags to assess hyperthyroid and non-hyperthyroid housecats’ publicity to numerous flame retardants, together with OPEs. Silicone picks up risky and semi-volatile natural compounds, and wristbands made from the fabric have been used in earlier research to monitor human publicity to environmental chemical substances.

To seek out out, the researchers recruited homeowners of 78 housecats seven years and older, half with hyperthyroidism and half with out, to enable their pets to take part in the examine. They gave the cats’ homeowners silicone tags to placed on their pets. After the cats had worn the tags for seven days, the researchers analyzed the silicone and located increased ranges of TDCIPP from these cats with hyperthyroidism. Amongst non-hyperthyroid cats, TDCIPP publicity correlated with serum concentrations of a hormone elevated in hyperthyroidism. Increased TDCIPP exposures had been related to air freshener use, homes constructed since 2005, and cats that favor to nap on upholstered furnishings.

Reference: “Silicone Pet Tags Affiliate Tris(1,3-dichloro-2-isopropyl) Phosphate Exposures with Feline Hyperthyroidism” by Carolyn M. Poutasse, Julie B. Herbstman, Mark E. Peterson, Jana Gordon, Peter H. Soboroff, Darrell Holmes, Dezere Gonzalez, Lane G. Tidwell and Kim A. Anderson, 10 July 2019, Environmental Science & Know-how.
DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.9b02226

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