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Urge Your Senators to Pass Endocrine Disruption Bill

Endocrine disruption is one of the most misunderstood and overlooked aspects of medical health. Legislation and research tends to focus far more on cancer — leaving behind diseases that can be debilitating, though not necessarily fatal.

Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts is trying to change that with passage of Bill S2828 “The Endocrine Disruption Prevention Act.”

In deciding whether or not to urge your U.S. Senators to get involved with this, it’s useful to begin with definitions. Here’s a passage found on “The endocrine system is the exquisitely balanced system of glands and hormones that regulates such vital functions as body growth, response to stress, sexual development and behavior, production and utilization of insulin, rate of metabolism, intelligence and behavior, and the ability to reproduce. Hormones are chemicals such as insulin, thyroxin, estrogen, and testosterone that interact with specific target cells. The interactions occur through a number of mechanisms, the easiest of which to conceptualize is the lock and key. For example, target cells such as those in the uterus contain receptors (locks) into which specific estrogenic hormones (keys) can attach and thereby cause specific biological actions, such as regulating ovulation or terminating pregnancy. Other endocrine disrupting mechanisms include binding hormone transport proteins or other proteins involved in signaling pathways, inhibiting or inducing enzymes, interfering with uptake and export from cells, and modifying gene expression.”

Many of the products we use around the home, including cleaning agents, cooking supplies and utensils, paints and fabrics, and weed and insect killers on lawns and gardens are known to contain chemicals that disrupt the endocrine system — thereby creating health consequences we are only beginning to understand.

“To date, no chemical in use has been thoroughly tested for its endocrine disrupting effects,” according to the website. “Traditional toxicological testing protocols were not designed to test for endocrine disruption and to test at ambient or low exposure levels.”

The Endocrine Disruption Prevention Act would authorize the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences to conduct endocrine disruption research in order to develop assays that will identify endocrine disrupting chemicals and determine their safety. The program will rely on a panel of scientific experts, free of conflict of interest, to evaluate the findings and determine the level of concern. This information will be passed on to regulatory agencies (EPA, FDA, CPSC, OSHA, and the Dept. of Agriculture) who must propose a course of action in response to the findings.

Please call your senators and urge them to co-sponsor S2828: The Endocrine Disruption Prevention Act! And while you’re at it, get your House members moving too.

For more information on how you can help support this bill, go to

About The Author

Paul Tukey

An international leader of the green movement, Mr. Tukey is a journalist, author, filmmaker, TV host, activist and award-winning public speaker, who is widely recognized as North America's leading advocate for landscape sustainability and toxic pesticide reduction strategies.

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