LOS ANGELES (AP) - Researchers have found that Californians have
twice as much of a flame-retardant in their blood and as much as 10
times more of the chemical in their homes than anywhere in the country.
Details of the study by Massachusetts-based Silent Spring Institute were published this week in the journal Environmental Science & Technology.
It found older children and infants, who may be more susceptible to the harmful effects of the chemicals, can have several times as much as adults.
The chemicals, known as polybrominated diphenyl ethers, or PBDEs, have been widely used in California, due to a passed 30 years ago requiring furniture and bedding to withstand 12 seconds of contact with an open flame without igniting.
PBDEs have been shown in animals to cause thyroid hormone disruption and to interfere with developing reproductive and nervous systems.
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