“DDT Exposure During Pregnancy Linked To Breast Cancer,” by Justin Worland, Time.

DDT (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane), previously linked to Alzheimer’s disease, obesity, and kidney and ovarian diseases, was taken out of use 30 years ago because of its harmful effects on health and the environment. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism shows “direct evidence” that higher DDT exposure in utero places women at increased risk of breast cancer later in life compared to those exposed to lower levels.

Researchers evaluated 54 years of data from women starting from the time they were in utero. Out of 9,300 women who had been tracked from even before birth, the study authors identified 118 women who had been diagnosed with breast cancer. Women whose mothers had been exposed to significant levels of DDT during pregnancy were four times as likely to have had breast cancer as their counterparts who had been exposed to a small quantity of the pesticide, according to the findings.

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