increases in diabetes, obesity, prostate and testicular pathology, polycystic ovarysyndrome as well as breast disease and cancer. While the Endocrine societystatement was not designed to specifically address hair loss in AGA, among thesubstances included in this review are those which have an effect on the hormonesinvolved in the hair growth paradigm. For those who would like a morecomprehensive review, the entire report is referenced and easy to download in aPDF format.(10) As defined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) an
EDC is “an exogenous agent that interferes with synthesis, secretion, transport,
metabolism, binding action, or elimination of natural blood borne hormones that arepresent in the body and are responsible for homeostasis, reproduction, and
developmental process.” Researchers now have a broader understanding of theways EDC’s work, this includes their action on nuclear receptors such as androgen,
estrogen or thyroid receptors as well as enzymatic pathways for synthesis and
metabolism. EDC’s can be natural or synthetic. Exposure can occur via inhalation,
dietary consumption or dermal contact. Difficulties and limitations for interpretingEDC exposure effects include the fact that, as the EPA estimates ,we are beingexposed to hundreds of chemicals daily
making it virtually impossible to single out the effects of a single EDC in human models.The following is a list of some of the pertinent synthetic molecules mentioned inthe review article, their byproducts and ways they are used which contributes toour exposure, as well as the biologic effects noted in animals and/or humans whichdocument the hormonal effect of the chemical:
d biphenyls (PCB’s):
These are synthetic, lipophilic, halogenatedcompounds used in electrical equipment such as transformers, capacitors, heat transfer and hydraulic systems, also cutting oils and lubricants. PCBs have also beenused in products such as sealants, carbonless copy paper, paints, adhesives, plastics,flame retardants and to control dust on roads. Although their production in the
U.S. and Australia was banned in the late 1970’s, and heavy restrictions have been
imposed on their use in Europe since 1985, continued exposure occurs throughingestion of contaminated foods (fish, meat, dairy products, contaminated rice oil).
PCB’s can be transported long distances and have been identified far from locations
where they were manufactured or in use
having been reported in remote areas of
the globe. Because PCB’s bioaccumulate with a half life of 1
-10 or more years, andaccumulate in adipose tissue, measurable levels are found in most of the USpopulation. (x) Epidemiological evidence across several different surveys includingthe U.S., Sweden, and Taiwan consistently showed an inverse relationship between
PCB’s and semen quality, with reduced sperm motility. Low levels were sufficient to
have an effect.
PCB’s have been shown to have estrogenic
and antiandrogenic activity.
PCB’s have been shown in animal models to reduce circulating levels of T4,
and can interact with the thyroid receptor. They have been observed to cause bothagonist and antagonist responses to the TR, with complex but deleterious effect. It is felt to be a neurotoxin in humans, with evidence of cerebellar sensitivity.