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A new scientific study published in Lancet Planetary Health by researchers at Aberdeen and Örebro Universities indicates that per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) affect people as early as in the fetal stage of development. The study provides evidence that fetuses exposed to PFAS have altered metabolism and liver function even before birth, which may increase the risk of metabolic diseases, such as diabetes, in adulthood. 

HEAL’s director Génon Jensen praises the important study: “This timely and thorough study shows what we have long feared – PFAS have the potential to negatively affect future generations even before they are born, and exposure is difficult to avoid. This is why the proposed EU PFAS restriction is now more important than ever. HEAL calls on the EU to prioritise a widely restrictive proposal that minimises derogations for all non-essential PFAS uses.“ 

Read the press release by University of Aberdeen and Örebro University for more information on the study.

Access the article “In utero exposures to perfluoroalkyl substances and the human fetal liver metabolome in Scotland: a cross-sectional study” in Lancet Planetary Health. 

To learn more about the EU PFAS restriction submitted to the European Commission by Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden read HEAL’s response to the public consultation. 

PFAS are widely used in consumer products from cosmetics to clothes, and most of us are exposed to them daily e.g. in our drinking water. They have been associated with a myriad of adverse health effects ranging from hormone and development disruption to cancer. It is estimated over 17,000 sites are contaminated by PFAS in Europe. HEAL has shed light on concerned communities taking action against PFAS pollution in Denmark, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden and Belgium.

For information, and comments contact: Nea Pakarinen, Senior Communications and Media Officer,

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