Grandmother’s Pesticide Exposure Increases Granddaughters’ Breast Cancer and Cardiometabolic Disorder Risk

April 2, 2021 | Past maternal exposure to the pesticide dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) during pregnancy increases the risk of breast cancer and cardiometabolic disorders (e.g., heart disease, obesity, diabetes) for up to three successive generations, according to a study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. Although previous studies highlight early life or in utero exposure to DDT increasing breast cancer risk later in life, this study is the first to note generational effects on grandchildren’s health. DDT continues to adversely affect the health of the U.S. population, nearly 50 years after its ban. However, this ban is not global, as many countries still use or manufacture the chemical compound. [Cirillo, Piera et al. Grandmaternal Perinatal Serum DDT in Relation to Granddaughter Early Menarche and Adult Obesity: Three Generations in the Child Health and Development Studies Cohort. Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, 30(8), August, 2021.]