Tue 4 Aug 2009
Professor Jerzy Buzek, President, European Parliament
Dear Professor Buzek,
May I sincerely congratulate you on your new position as president of the European Parliament and may your term as president be a successful and fulfilling one. I am writing to you, not only as a concerned EU citizen, but as a fellow scientist. The fact that you are a chemical engineer by profession means that you are familiar with the problem of bisphenol A (BPA) and its effects on human health. You are also certainly aware of the close structural resemblance between BPA and another, more potent chemical, diethyl stilbestrol (DES), whose disastrous health consequences have been well documented.
Our organisation, Antidote Europe, would like to bring to your attention the sensible decision of the Canadian government in 2008 to declare BPA a dangerous substance and to ban it in baby bottles. Equally important, I would like to refer you to studies involving human data and developmental biology, which should be taken into account with respect to regulatory decision-making in the EU, in particular by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). These include BPA levels in human umbilical cord blood samples as well as other biological fluids, epidemiological studies and results obtained using toxicogenomics (see http://www.antidote-europe.org/cp08jul09_gb.htm). Standard toxicological studies involving animal data and linear relationships are inappropriate when considering the effects of BPA in relation to the human foetus.
It is unfortunate that some sectors of industry and even some sectors of the regulatory apparatus choose to put human health at risk, on the basis of irrelevant or selective data. Antidote Europe, together with like-minded consumer and environmental protection organisations, succeeded in getting the concept of “toxicogenomics” included in the REACH regulations and approved by the Council of Ministers. Sadly, the EU still lags significantly behind the US in the application of toxicogenomics as an early screening tool to assess the toxic risk potential of the 100,000 chemicals in which we live today. The use of modern toxicology, in combination with the field of developmental biology, will continue to provide valuable information to health authorities concerning BPA. We trust that you will give your full consideration to this information with regard to the health of EU citizens.
Claude Reiss PhD
President, Antidote Europe
Former departmental head at the French Centre National de Recherche Scientifique (CNRS)
Andre Menache MRCVS
Director, Antidote Europe
Antidote Europe is a non-profit association created by scientists and researchers working towards biomedical research methods that represent sound science.
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