Microplastics Could Cross Over from Mother to Fetus, Study Shows

Suzanne Burdick

The authors of a peer-reviewed study showing microplastics passed pregnant rats’ intestinal and placental barriers, leading to impaired fetal development, concluded the same could be true for humans.

The study, published in Nanomaterials, is the rst to show that microplastics fed to pregnant mammals can reach fetal tissues.

… “It is certainly not surprising that nano-sized pieces of plastic would cross from the maternal blood through the placenta into the fetal blood circulation,” Thorp told The Defender.

“Many factors determine to what extent a molecule will pass through the ‘placental barrier’ including the size, concentration, and lipid versus water solubility … I would expect a 20-nanometer plastic particle to easily cross the placenta,” added Thorp, who also is a board-certi ed maternal-fetal medicine specialist with more than 40 years experience.

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