A Restatement of the evidence on endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) from the Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford, describes how wildlife are exposed to combinations of pollutants and what is known about their effects. Although scientists know a lot about the impact of individual chemicals, the research into the effect of a mixture of compounds is limited.
The endocrine system is the collection of glands that produce hormones and plays a critical role in growth, organ function and reproduction. EDCs come from a variety of products including plastics, human and veterinary pharmaceuticals, flame-retardants and manufacturing chemicals. They can leach from poorly managed landfills, be contained in agricultural run-off, and be discharged into rivers and oceans in wastewater.
This latest restatement, published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, is authored by a group of nine scientists led by Prof Sir Charles Godfray and compiles the evidence on chemicals known to disrupt the endocrine system of wildlife in order to better inform policy decisions and show where crucial knowledge gaps lie.
Prof Charles Godfray, Director of the Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford
Prof John Sumpter, Professor in Ecotoxicology, Brunel University London
Dr Paul Jepson, Reader in Wildlife Population Health, Institute of Zoology, Zoological Society of London (ZSL)