Superfund Research Program
Hormonal Activity of Chlorinated Hydrocarbons and Related Contaminants from New York Harbor Sediments
Project Leader: Mary S. Wolff
Grant Number: P42ES007384
Funding Period: 1995 - 2006
Project Summary (1995-2000)This project explores the hypothesis that chlorinated hydrocarbons deposited in the environment exhibit hormonal activity including estrogenicity. Harbor sediment samples and pure chemicals are being tested in vitro using assay systems of isolated human cell lines. The complement of these assays allow rapid efficient screening of an array of chemicals and of chemical mixtures as they occur in hazardous waste sites. Detection of a range of hormonal and anti-hormonal activities of environmental contaminants will reflect their potential for public health risks, especially for reproductive dysfunction and cancer. Exposure may affect more than one hormone system, an outcome that could be missed by evaluating estrogenic activity alone. Data obtained may support a hypothesis that estrogenic and progestagenic activity of these agents may be a mechanism through which chlorinated hydrocarbons in the environment enhance the risk of breast cancer and possibly other cancers in exposed populations.