Tag Archives: 2017

University of California Riverside study: Drinking alcohol while pregnant could have transgenerational effects

9 Jul

Moi wrote in Common household chemicals link to drop in child IQ:

The goal of this society should be to raise healthy and happy children who will grow into concerned and involved adults who care about their fellow citizens and environment. Science Daily reported in Prenatal exposure to common household chemicals linked with substantial drop in child IQ:

Children exposed during pregnancy to elevated levels of two common chemicals found in the home–di-n-butyl phthalate (DnBP) and di-isobutyl phthalate (DiBP)–had an IQ score, on average, more than six points lower than children exposed at lower levels, according to researchers at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. The study is the first to report a link between prenatal exposure to phthalates and IQ in school-age children. Results appear online in the journal PLOS ONE.
DnBP and DiBP are found in a wide variety of consumer products, from dryer sheets to vinyl fabrics to personal care products like lipstick, hairspray, and nail polish, even some soaps. Since 2009, several phthalates have been banned from children’s toys and other childcare articles in the United States. However, no steps have been taken to protect the developing fetus by alerting pregnant women to potential exposures. In the U.S., phthalates are rarely listed as ingredients on products in which they are used.
Researchers followed 328 New York City women and their children from low-income communities. They assessed the women’s exposure to four phthalates–DnBP, DiBP, di-2-ethylhexyl phthalate, and diethyl phthalate–in the third trimester of pregnancy by measuring levels of the chemicals’ metabolites in urine. Children were given IQ tests at age 7.
Children of mothers exposed during pregnancy to the highest 25 percent of concentrations of DnBP and DiBP had IQs 6.6 and 7.6 points lower, respectively, than children of mothers exposed to the lowest 25 percent of concentrations after controlling for factors like maternal IQ, maternal education, and quality of the home environment that are known to influence child IQ scores. The association was also seen for specific aspects of IQ, such as perceptual reasoning, working memory, and processing speed. The researchers found no associations between the other two phthalates and child IQ.
The range of phthalate metabolite exposures measured in the mothers was not unusual: it was within what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention observed in a national sample.
“Pregnant women across the United States are exposed to phthalates almost daily, many at levels similar to those that we found were associated with substantial reductions in the IQ of children,” says lead author Pam Factor-Litvak, PhD, associate professor of Epidemiology at the Mailman School.
“The magnitude of these IQ differences is troubling,” says senior author Robin Whyatt, DrPH, Professor of Environmental Health Sciences and deputy director of the Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health at the Mailman School. “A six- or seven-point decline in IQ may have substantial consequences for academic achievement and occupational potential.”
PSYBLOG lists common household items in 8 Household Items Newly Found to Lower Children’s IQ Significantly:
Avoiding phthalates
While it is impossible to avoid phthalates completely, they are found in these common products, amongst others:
• Hairspray.
• Plastic containers used for microwaving food.
• Lipstick.
• Air fresheners.
• Dryer sheets.
• Nail polish.
• Some soaps.
• Recycled plastics labelled 3,6 or 7.
http://www.spring.org.uk/2014/12/8-household-items-newly-found-to-lower-childrens-iq-significantly.php:

A Virginia Tech study involving mice confirmed this study. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/06/170617073635.htm A University of California Riverside study examined the premise that the effects of alcohol use during pregnancy can affect later generations.

Science Daily reported in in Drinking alcohol while pregnant could have transgenerational effects:

Soon-to-be mothers have heard the warning — don’t drink while pregnant. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued numerous statements about the dangers of alcohol consumption during pregnancy, as it can lead to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) in newborns.
Despite this, many women drink during pregnancy, a choice that scientists have known for years could hurt these mothers’ children. Today, there is a new reason why an expectant mother should put down that glass of wine — drinking alcohol during pregnancy will not only affect her unborn child, but may also impact brain development and lead to adverse outcomes in her future grand- and even great-grandchildren….
“Traditionally, prenatal ethanol exposure (PrEE) from maternal consumption of alcohol, was thought to solely impact directly exposed offspring, the embryo or fetus in the womb. However, we now have evidence that the effects of prenatal alcohol exposure could persist transgenerationally and negatively impact the next-generations of offspring who were never exposed to alcohol,” Huffman said.
Previous work from the Huffman Laboratory at UCR has shown that PrEE impacts the anatomy of the neocortex, the part of the brain responsible for complex behavior and cognition in humans, and that PrEE can lead to abnormal motor behavior and increased anxiety in the exposed offspring. Huffman and a group of UCR students have extended this research by providing strong evidence that in utero ethanol exposure generates neurobiological and behavioral effects in subsequent generations of mice that had no ethanol exposure….. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/07/170707095338.htm

Citation:

Drinking alcohol while pregnant could have transgenerational effects
Prenatal ethanol exposure causes abnormalities in the brain, behavior that may be passed on for many generations
Date: July 7, 2017
Source: University of California – Riverside
Summary:
Soon-to-be mothers have heard the warning – don’t drink while pregnant. Experts have issued numerous statements about the dangers of alcohol consumption during pregnancy, as it can lead to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). Now a new study finds that prenatal ethanol exposure (from maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy) causes abnormalities in the brain and behavior that may be passed on for many generations.

Journal Reference:
1. Charles W. Abbott, David J. Rohac, Riley T. Bottom, Sahil Patadia, Kelly J. Huffman. Prenatal Ethanol Exposure and Neocortical Development: A Transgenerational Model of FASD. Cerebral Cortex, 2017; 1 DOI: 10.1093/cercor/bhx168

Here is the press release from the University of California Riverside:

Drinking Alcohol While Pregnant Could Have Transgenerational Effects
New study by UCR psychology professor finds that prenatal ethanol exposure (from maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy) causes abnormalities in the brain and behavior that may be passed on for many generations
By Mojgan Sherkat on July 6, 2017
RIVERSIDE, Calif. (www.ucr.edu) – Soon-to-be mothers have heard the warning – don’t drink while pregnant. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued numerous statements about the dangers of alcohol consumption during pregnancy, as it can lead to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) in newborns.
Despite this, many women drink during pregnancy, a choice that scientists have known for years could hurt these mothers’ children. Today, there is a new reason why an expectant mother should put down that glass of wine – drinking alcohol during pregnancy will not only affect her unborn child, but may also impact brain development and lead to adverse outcomes in her future grand- and even great-grandchildren.
The new study by Kelly Huffman, psychology professor at the University of California, Riverside, titled “Prenatal Ethanol Exposure and Neocortical Development: A Transgenerational Model of FASD,” was published in the journal Cerebral Cortex.
“Traditionally, prenatal ethanol exposure (PrEE) from maternal consumption of alcohol, was thought to solely impact directly exposed offspring, the embryo or fetus in the womb. However, we now have evidence that the effects of prenatal alcohol exposure could persist transgenerationally and negatively impact the next-generations of offspring who were never exposed to alcohol,” Huffman said.
Previous work from the Huffman Laboratory at UCR has shown that PrEE impacts the anatomy of the neocortex, the part of the brain responsible for complex behavior and cognition in humans, and that PrEE can lead to abnormal motor behavior and increased anxiety in the exposed offspring. Huffman and a group of UCR students have extended this research by providing strong evidence that in utero ethanol exposure generates neurobiological and behavioral effects in subsequent generations of mice that had no ethanol exposure.
To determine whether the abnormalities in brain and behavior from prenatal ethanol exposure would pass transgenerationally, Huffman generated a mouse model of FASD and tested many aspects of brain and behavioral development across three generations. As expected, the first generation, the directly exposed offspring, showed atypical gene expression, abnormal development of the neural network within the neocortex and behavioral deficits. However, the main discovery of the research lies in the subsequent, non-exposed generations of mice. These animals had neurodevelopmental and behavioral problems similar to the those of the first, directly exposed generation.
“We found that body weight and brain size were significantly reduced in all generations of PrEE animals when compared to controls; all generations of PrEE mice showed increased anxiety-like, depressive-like behaviors and sensory-motor deficits. By demonstrating the strong transgenerational effects of prenatal ethanol exposure in a mouse model of FASD, we suggest that FASD may be a heritable condition in humans,” Huffman said.
The multi-level analyses in this study suggest that alcohol consumption while pregnant leads to a cascade of nervous system changes that ultimately impact behavior, via mechanisms that can produce transgenerational effects. By gaining an understanding of the neurodevelopmental and behavioral effects of prenatal ethanol exposure that persist across generations, scientists and researchers can begin to create novel therapies and methods of prevention.
Media Contact
Mojgan Sherkat
Tel: (951) 827-5893
E-mail: mojgan.sherkat@ucr.edu
Twitter: mojgansherkat
Additional Contacts
Kelly Huffman
E-mail: kellyhn@ucr.edu

See, Helping to protect children from the harmful effects of chemicals http://www.who.int/ipcs/highlights/children_chemicals/en/

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