Consensus on the key characteristics of endocrine-disrupting chemicals as a basis for hazard identification

December 10, 2019
1:00 pm US Eastern Time

Endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are exogenous chemicals that interfere with hormone action, thereby increasing health risks (e.g. for cancer, reproductive impairment, cognitive deficits, and obesity). A complex literature of mechanistic studies provides evidence on EDC hazard, yet there is no widely accepted, systematic method to integrate these data to help identify EDC hazards. Inspired by work to improve hazard identification of carcinogens using key characteristics (KCs), the CalEPA invited Drs. La Merrill and Zoeller to lead an international group of experts and they have developed 10 KCs of EDCs based on their knowledge of hormone actions and EDC effects. During this webinar, Dr. La Merrill described the KCs, the logic by which these KCs are identified and the assays that could be used to assess several of these KCs. She discussed how these 10 KCs can be used to identify, organize and utilize mechanistic data when evaluating chemicals as EDCs, and use diethylstilbestrol, bisphenol A, and perchlorate as examples to illustrate this approach.  

Featured Speaker

Michele A. La Merrill, PhD, earned her PhD in Toxicology from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and her M.P.H. in epidemiology at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Dr. La Merrill is an Associate Professor of Environmental Toxicology at the University of California, Davis. She uses cellular, whole animal and human epidemiological studies to link toxicological evidence of mechanisms of adverse health effects to human environmental health research. She is particularly focused on the associations between exposure to environmental pollution and the risk of endocrine diseases: obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and breast cancer. Dr. La Merrill served on an International Agency for Research on Cancer Monograph that evaluated pesticides as potential carcinogens and is a current appointee of the California Carcinogen Identification Committee.

This webinar is one in a monthly series sponsored by the Collaborative on Health and the Environment’s EDC Strategies Partnership. The CHE EDC Strategies Partnership is chaired by Sharyle Patton (Commonweal Biomonitoring Resource Center), Jerry Heindel (Commonweal HEEDS, Healthy Environment and Endocrine Disruptor Strategies), and Genon Jensen (HEAL) and coordinated by Hannah Donart (Collaborative on Health and the Environment, a Commonweal program). To see a full list of past calls and webinars related to EDCs and listen to or view recordings, please visit our partnership page.

This webinar was moderated by Jerry Heindel, PhD, founder and director of Commonweal's Healthy Environment and Endocrine Disruptor Strategies (HEEDS). It lasted for 30 minutes and was recorded for our call and webinar archive.