Effects of Endocrine Disruptors on Endocrine Function and Reproductive Function in Wildlife and Humans

내분비교란물질이 야생동물 및 인간의 내분비기능과 생식기능에 미치는 영향

  • 류병호 (경성대학교 식품공학과)
  • Published : 1999.10.01


A wide ranges of chemicals released into the environment have potential to interfere with physiological and development process by disrupting endocrine pathways. Endocrine system embraces a multitude of mechanisms of action, including effect on growth, behavior, reproduction and immune function. These environmental endocrine disruptors are present in environment and pose potential health consequences to human and wildlife. The best known form in endocrine distruptors involves substances which mimic or block the action of natural hormone in the body. Endocrine disruptor have been variously defined as exogenous agents that interfere with the synthesis, secretion, transport, metabolism, binding action or elimination of the natural hormones in the body which are responsible for the maintenance of homeostasis, reproduction developmental and/or behavior. Many compounds polluted into the environment by human activity are capable of disrupting the endocrine system of animals, including fish, wildlife, and humans. Among these chemicals are pesticides, industrial chemicals, and other anthropogenic products. It has been alleged that several adverse effects on human health are linked with exposure to chemicals which are claimed to be endocrine disrupters, that is, increased incidence of testicular, prostate and female breast cancer, time dependent reductions in sperm quality and quantity, increased incidence of cryptorchidism (undescended testicles) and hypospadias(malformation of the penis), altered physical and mental de velopment in children. This observation is currently the only example of chemically mediated endocrine disruption which has resulted in a clear effect at the population level.


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