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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

BU: PBDEs Linked to Thyroid Function

Exposure to flame-retardant chemicals known as PBDEs is associated with a decrease in a thyroid hormone critical to growth and metabolism, a new study led by Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) researchers shows.

The findings of the study, published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, are consistent with those from animal studies showing that polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) disrupt thyroid hormones. PBDEs have been used since the 1970s as additive flame retardants in consumer products such as electronics and furniture, especially products containing polyurethane foam.

The new study was led by Dr. Colleen Makey, a postdoctoral research fellow in the department of environmental health. Co-authors from BUSPH include: Dr. Michael McClean, associate professor of environmental health; Dr. Thomas Webster, professor of environmental health; and Dr. Janice Weinberg, professor of biostatistics.

To read more about the study, go to: