endocrine disruptors; phthalates; alternative plasticizers
환경생물, v. 35, no. 1, page. 21-36
Phthalates, known as typical endocrine disruptors, are plasticizers used to soften plastics such as polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Because of their material properties, phthalates are used extensively in the production of toys, flooring, wood processing, detergents, and even cosmetics as lubricants and perfume solvents. Due to their endocrine disrupting effect and other adverse health effects published, recently, phthalates have been regulated in many countries. Besides, in an effort to replace phthalates, several chemical plasticizers such as trioctyltrimellitate (TOTM) and dioctylterephthalate (DIOP) have been used instead of the existing harmful phthalates, and novel alternatives are continuously being developed. Nonetheless, phthalates are still being detected in several plastic products, and the safety of alternatives that are considered safe is being questioned. In this review, we describe the adverse health effects of phthalates, their regulation and the current status of their alternatives.