Arch Dis Child 91:627
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  1. Howard Bauchner, Editor in Chief


    Environmental toxins, in the form of pesticides and heavy metals, fill the air and soil, and are in many commercial products. Their impact on fetal growth and development, and infant health, has been the subject of much speculation. Concerns that exposure may lead to cancers and neurocognitive disorders like autism, have been debated for decades. In a series of four articles, an original report by Ortega García et al from Spain, two perspectives by Tuomisto from Finland and Ostrea et al from the US, and a leading article by Acerini and Hughes from the UK, this issue and that of endocrine disrupting chemicals are explored. Ortega Garcia presents preliminary data that meconium can be used to detect fetal exposure to neurotoxicants, in this case organochlorine compounds. The two perspectives comment on the use and complexity of meconium as a marker of exposure, as well as issues related to dose, timing of exposure, and susceptibility of fetuses to risk of disease. The leading article is broader in scope, and meant as an introduction to endocrine disrupting chemicals. Beginning with a description of the changing …

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