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Hormones (Athens). 2015 Jan-Mar;14(1):32-46.

Sun lotion chemicals as endocrine disruptors.

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National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, School of Medicine, First Department of Pathology and Cytology Unit, 1st Pathology Laboratory, Athens, Greece.


Ultraviolet solar radiation is a well-known environmental health risk factor and the use of sun lotions is encouraged to achieve protection mainly from skin cancer. Sun lotions are cosmetic commercial products that combine active and inactive ingredients and many of these are associated with health problems, including allergic reactions and endocrine disorders. This review focuses on their ability to cause endocrine and reproductive impairments, with emphasis laid on the active ingredients (common and less common UV filters). In vitro and in vivo studies have demonstrated their ability to show oestrogenic/anti-oestrogenic and androgenic/anti-androgenic activity. Many ingredients affect the oestrous cycle, spermatogenesis, sexual behaviour, fertility and other reproductive parameters in experimental animals. Their presence in aquatic environments may reveal a new emerging environmental hazard.

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