The compound used in place of BPA, a chemical thought to change neurological development in children, has been found to cause possibly worse damage to developing fetuses, a groundbreaking study has found.
Canadian researchers found that exposure to bisphenol-S caused even higher levels of abnormal growth surges of neurons in animal embryos than bisphenol-A, which sippy cup and baby bottle manufacturers dropped after studies showed harmful effects.
University of Calgary researchers suggest that all structurally similar bisphenol compounds now in use or considered for use by plastic manufacturers are unsafe, according to a report in the Washington Post.
Exposure to BPA and, apparently, BPS disrupts the prenatal cellular activity in zebra fish, which scientists use to study human brain development because of their 80 percent shared genes with humans. The result of the abnormal neural development appeared to cause hyperactivity, the study reports.
Scientists analyzing the study's results said the observed abnormal growth of brain cells affected male hormones specifically, which may be one reason why there has been a four-fold increase for boys over girls diagnosed with brain disorders such as hyperactivity and autism.
The American Chemical Council, which continues to argue for the safety of BPA and BPS despite the findings, questions conclusions about humans derived from studies on fish, saying that humans can efficiently convert bisphenol-A and eliminate it from the body with no harmful effects.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the vast majority of Americans — 90 percent — show trace amounts of BPA in their bodies, and that BPA and BPS are ubiquitous. The former is found in everything from the lining of cans, plastic toys and lunch bags; the latter in products labeled "BPA-free," recycled paper and store receipts.
The studies findings were published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.