Subject: Environmental Studies
Topic: ENVIRONMENTAL HORMONE MIMICS
Language: English (U.S.)
Pages: 1
Instructions
a. What is meant by "environmental hormone mimics"? Why is there a controversy? b. Outline and discuss three main areas of disagreement between Michele Trankina and Michael Gough. c. Which side do you agree with? Explain your answer.

Environmental Hormone Mimics

           Environmental hormone mimics refers to chemical substances that are introduced into the body, and mimic the hormones of the body. The mimicking substances disrupt the normal functioning of the hormones that are naturally secreted by the body. The environmental hormone mimics are controversial because many scientists believe that they enter the body and behave specifically like estrogen, which alters the reproductive ability of female animals and women.

           Trankina (2001) believes that several synthetic chemicals used in agricultural applications enter the bodies of animals and alter their reproductive functioning. The result is a myriad of diseases for both the animals and human beings including cancer in man. However, Gough (1997) believes that any scientific discourse on environmental estrogen is ‘junk science’, with no scientific merit whatsoever.

           Gough (1997) also opines that the notion that environmental chemicals are directly linked to the growth of cancers in human beings is only an excuse used by the government because it is unable to explain the source of such diseases. He argues that environmental exposure causes only about 3% of cancer in the US, a far cry from the 90% that government scientists attribute to environmental carcinogens. On the other hand, Trankina (2001) believes that the environmental chemicals are a major contributor to the prevalence of different cancers especially in the industrialized nations.

           Gough (1997) also believes that there is no evidence linking the environmental estrogens with the abnormalities in wildlife. According to the author, scientists claim there is a link to scare the public and the government into protecting the wildlife and the environment. However, Trankina (2001) categorically states that the estrogen mimicking substances in the environment lead to negative changes in the fertility and reproductive anatomy of animals.

           I concur with Gough (1997) when he stipulates that there is no evidence that suggests that there are environmental estrogens or substances that can mimic hormones in the body. There is also no evidence to suggest that cancers are a direct result of environmental exposure. 

References

Gough, M. (1997, Dec 15). Endocrine Disrupters, Politics Pesticides, the Cost of Food and Health. Retrieved on 11/4/2016 from http://www.cato.org/publications/speeches/endocrine-disrupters-politics-pesticides


Trankina, L.M. (2001). The hazards of Environmental Estrogens. The World & I, 16 (10): 144.