LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Flame retardants found in butter

Researchers found very high levels of the flame retardant PBDE in one of ten samples of butter. The researchers believe the butter wrapper was the source of contamination, and they speculate that Deca-PBDE, which is being phased out of U.S. production, somehow got into the wrapping. Although the toxicology...

Scented consumer products emit over 100 different VOC's; some are carcinogenic

For those of us acquainted with researchers examining VOC exposure to individuals from scented consumer products (for example, at U.C. Berkeley and at U.C. Medical Center in San Francisco), it comes as no surprise that there is a bouquet of VOC's wafting into homes and work places. However, researchers...

When vanity is dangerous -- skin-lightening creams and mercury exposure

It has always amazed me the extent to which individuals are not satisfied with their physical appearance; this dissatisfaction is the foundation of much cosmetic surgery. However, it also has dangerous implications. After decades of warnings, individuals are finally becoming aware of the danger of skin...

9-11 firefighters show increased cancer risk, notes new study

Prior posts have addressed the various studies that have been published regarding the impact of exposure to the toxic dust and smoke that was generated by the 9-11 disaster. Researchers have now identified that male firefighters who were exposed to the toxic dust and smoke from the 9-11 attacks have...

In a case alleging that a community was exposed to airborne vinyl chloride, the Third Circuit affirmed that a class action was inappropriate since individual issues predominated

In Gates v. Rohm & Haas Co. et al , 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 17756 (3rd. Cir.: 8/25/11), Plaintiffs were residents of a primarily residential area of approximately 2,000 people and 400 homes. Defendant chemical companies owned and operated a facility one mile north of of the village. The plaintiffs...

Some cancers associated with drinking to "excess" (a pint of beer a day)

As noted repeatedly in prior posts, toxic torts require proof of causation. As such, an assessment of alternative explanations for the disease or illness at issue becomes important. The consumption of alcohol (usually in excess of some amount) has been associated with ovarian and breast cancer in women...

New Chemicals Proposed for Addition to California’s Proposition 65 List

By Katherine M. Rahill, Partner, Jenner & Block In December and January, the California Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment ("OEHHA") announced its intent to add seven new chemicals to the Proposition 65 chemicals list: •...

Formaldehyde is found in a broad range of clothing and household products

Formaldehyde is a Group 1 human carcinogen. Search at Toxnet Toxicology Data Network . In the past, exposure to the populace was often linked to its presence in glues and binders used in furniture and paneling, although it is also found in shampoo, conditioners, and water-based paints. Search at Household...

EPA may be preparing tough report on dioxins in food

Dioxins collectively refers to hundreds of chemical compounds that share certain structures and biological characteristics. See Dioxin . Dioxins fall into three closely related groups: the chlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (CDD's) chlorinated dibenzofurans (CDF's), and certain polychlorinated biphenyls...

EPA Releases Final Health Assessment for Tetrachloroethylene (aka Perc)

EPA has posted its final health assessment for tetrachloroethylene (aka perc) to its Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS). Perc is widely used in the dry cleaning industry, although states such as California are requiring that it be phased out. See http://epa.gov/oppt/existingchemicals/pubs/perchloroethylene_fact_sheet...

Organic Does Not Mean Healthy: Organic Brown Rice Syrup has Arsenic and is Widely Used as a Sweetener

Consumers are attracted to organic products because they are perceived to be healthier than conventional food sources. To borrow a phrase from Porgy & Bess (as I have done in the past), it ain't necessarily so. [See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kP5O_NUhrK0 .] Organic brown rice syrup has...

New Report Links Fracking to Potential Health Issues

By Steven M. Siros, Partner, Jenner & Block A recent study by the Colorado School of Public Health has linked hydraulic fracturing to elevated levels of petroleum hydrocarbons in the air near drilling sites. The study, to be published in Science of the Total Environment , identified cancer and...

DNA Predicts Only a Few Disorders

Prior posts have noted that gene functioning can be modified by a number of processes, such as methylation. Recently animal tests have found that some of these modifications are passed on to off-spring even though no change is made to the gene itself, only to its expression. Prior posts have also noted...

Stress May Increase Inflammation and the Diseases Associated Therewith

Prior posts have noted that for toxic torts causation is the central focus, and that it is very difficult to prove. Prior posts have also noted that the makeup of the bacteria in one's GI tract can have a major influence on generating inflammation; a healthy diet can modify the makeup of these bacteria...

Toxic Torts: More carcinogens enter the fray for consideration as alternatives for causation

As has been frequently noted in prior posts, toxic torts are all about causation. Whenever a plaintiff alleges a particular type of disease or injury, alternatives need to be evaluated. This is especially so in the world of chemical exposure since many diseases or injuries can derive from a multitude...

California's OEHHA Adds New Chemical to Proposition 65 List, Setting up Product Manufacturers/Distributors as Targets to Eager Plaintiffs' Bar

The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) announced that it will add diisononyl phthalate (DINP) to the list of chemicals known to the State to cause cancer for purposes of the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 (widely known as Proposition 65). DINP is...

California Proposes Enhanced Prop. 65 Warnings and Possible Online Disclosures - Dietary Supplements and Foods Specially Targeted

The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) has announced that it is considering implementation of the most significant changes to Prop. 65 regulations in more than two decades. OEHHA has posted the draft regulation and Initial Statement of Reasons on its website. Passed...