New research reveals that Asian Americans have significantly greater exposure to cancer-linked “forever chemicals” compared to other races.
The findings, published last week on Environmental Science & Technology, a peer-reviewed journal, showed that different racial and socioeconomic groups are likely exposed to varying sources of the harmful substances, known as PFAS. The family of thousands of synthetic chemicals are used in a vast array of consumer products, from rugs to straws, due to their resistance to stains, grease and water.
The report highlighted a longstanding need for more research around the effect of PFAS on people of Asian descent, said Shelley Liu, lead study author.
“Asian Americans, unfortunately, are not that well represented in medical research. There are definitely a lot of things that we don’t know yet,” Liu, an associate professor at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, said. “It would be really important to investigate how this higher PFAS burden Asian Americans might be related to potential health impacts.”