Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals and Child Health.

While definitions vary, endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) have two fundamental features: their disruption of hormone function and their contribution to disease and disability. The unique vulnerability of children to low-level EDC exposures has eroded the notion that only the dose makes the thing a poison, requiring a paradigm shift in scientific and policy practice. In this review, we discuss the unique vulnerability of children as early as fetal life and provide an overview of epidemiological studies on programming effects of EDCs on neuronal, metabolic, and immune pathways as well as on endocrine, reproductive, and renal systems. Building on this accumulating evidence, we dispel and address existing myths about the health effects of EDCs with examples from child health research. Finally, we provide a list of effective actions to reduce exposure, and subsequent harm that are applicable to individuals, communities, and policy-makers. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Volume 62 is January 2022. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.
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