A U.S. scientific journal says bias might have resulted in inconsistent study results concerning the danger of a chemical found in many products.
Bisphenol A, or BPA, is a weak synthetic estrogen used in a variety of consumer products including baby bottles and food and beverage containers. Some animal studies have linked BPA with such adverse health effects as obesity and cancer and there's concern it might cause similar adverse effects in humans.
Among government and industry experiments on lab animals and tissues, 153 found adverse effects and 14 did not. The majority of those reporting no harm were funded by chemical corporations, the journal Chemical & Engineering News reported.
Now an editorial in the journal's April 16 issue by Senior Editor Bette Hileman highlights a number of potential sources of bias behind the inconsistent study outcomes, including the use of strains of rats that are insensitive to estrogen and choosing batches of animal feed that vary widely in their estrogenic activities.
The American Chemical Society journal said only an unbiased panel with appropriate expertise can resolve the apparently conflicting results of the BPA-related health studies.
Copyright 2007 by United Press International
Explore further: Budget cuts are harder if people know the benefits of research