BPA linked to problems with sperm quality

Oct. 28, 2010 at 9:07 PM   |   Comments

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 28 (UPI) -- A chemical used in common products and packaging and known to cause male impotence is linked to a lack of sperm quality and mobility, U.S. researchers say.

Bisphenol-A has been used to make plastic harder in products such as baby bottles, food containers, drink cans, mobile phone casings and tins of infant formula.

In earlier studies, BPA has been found to be an endocrine disrupter that in large amounts can interfere with the release of hormones, contributing to low sex drive, impotence and DNA damage in sperm, The Daily Telegraph reported Thursday.

Now a five-year study by Kaiser Permanente of 514 male workers in Chinese factories by Kaiser Permanente has found a link between levels of BPA in the blood and male fertility, the British newspaper said.

Researchers found men with higher urine BPA levels were two to four times more at risk of having poor semen quality, including low sperm concentration, low sperm vitality and mobility.

And the amount of BPA in the blood appeared inversely proportional to sperm quality.

"When you see this kind of association with semen you have to wonder what else BPA has an effect on," Dr. De-Kun Li, the lead study author, says. "Everybody should avoid BPA as much as you can."

Bottles and cans containing Bisphenol-A have been linked to breast cancer, heart disease, obesity, hyperactivity and other disorders and the chemical has been banned in Canada and three American states, the Telegraph said.

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