Creating a free account will enable you to subscribe to our daily and weekly email newsletters, as well as customize your reading experience to show only the categories most relevant to you.
Signing up only take a few minutes, so why not give it a try and see what you've been missing out on.
Although PCBs have been banned in the United States since 1979, University of Montreal and CHU Sainte-Justine researcher Maryse Bouchard has found that higher levels of the toxin was associated with lower cognitive performance in seniors. There is a significant association between PCB levels and cognitive abilities among individuals aged 70 to 84 years; the correlation was also detected to a lesser extent among people aged 60-69 years. This analysis also showed that the association differed by sex. Women in the older age group had the largest diminution in cognition in relation to exposure. "While most studies have looked at the impact of PCBs on infant development, our research shows that this toxin might affect us throughout our lives," Bouchard said.
The use and production of PCBs have been phased out for over 40 years, but these highly persistent substances are still found in the blood of most individuals, especially older people. 708 Americans participated in Bouchard's study, which involved providing blood samples to determine the levels of toxins in their bodies and completing a memory and motor-skill task to determine their cognitive performance. The PCB levels found in their bodies were representative of those in the general U.S population. "Aging persons could be at particular risk because of higher cumulative exposure built up across a lifetime, susceptibility due to underlying medical conditions, such as vascular disorders, and diminished cognitive reserve capacity," Bouchard said. "Our present findings suggest that PCBs, even at levels generally considered to pose low or no risk, may contribute to cognitive deficits."
PCB disposal processes currently range from effective remediation to deliberate dumping. They accumulate in the lipid tissues of animal and marine life forms, and biomagnify across the food chain. As a result, PCBs are today ubiquitously present in tissues of human populations, in North American and around the world. This study underscores the importance of improving our response to PCBs as a health hazard.
Article adapted by Medical News Today from original press release. Click 'references' tab above for source.
Visit our Seniors / Aging category page for the latest news on this subject.
Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:
University of Montreal. "Chemical banned by the US 3 decades ago still affecting seniors' cognitive performance." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 27 Nov. 2013. Web.
20 Apr. 2014. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/269336>
University of Montreal. (2013, November 27). "Chemical banned by the US 3 decades ago still affecting seniors' cognitive performance." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
Please note: If no author information is provided, the source is cited instead.
If you write about specific medications, operations, or procedures please do not name healthcare professionals by name.
For any corrections of factual information, or to contact our editorial team, please use our feedback form. Please send any medical news or health news press releases to:
Note: Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a health care professional. For more information, please read our terms and conditions.
This page was printed from: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/269336.php
Visit www.medicalnewstoday.com for medical news and health news headlines posted throughout the day, every day.
© 2004-2014 All rights reserved. MNT is the registered trade mark of MediLexicon International Limited.