Study Suggests Pregnant Mothers Exposed to C8 May Transfer It To Their Unborn Children

preeclampsia link to C8 water contaminationA chemical of concern because of its toxicity, C8 crosses the placenta of exposed mothers, contaminating the blood of unborn babies – and a recent study suggests that process begins early in pregnancy.

C8 is DuPont’s trade name for PFOA or perfluorooctanoic acid, an industrial surfactant used to make Teflon and many other household products.  The substance became the subject of a class action lawsuit in the Mid-Ohio Valley after people who live near DuPont Washington Works discovered their water supplies had become contaminated with C8 as the result of manufacturing processes.

C8 was subsequently linked to pregnancy-induced hypertension, ulcerative colitis, thyroid disease, high cholesterol, and kidney and testicular cancer.

In January, a group of researchers from West Virginia University published a study of in utero C8 exposure in the journal Environmental Science and Technology.  They wanted to determine at what point the manmade industrial chemical crosses the placenta of an exposed mother and enters the baby’s bloodstream.

West Virginia University researchers studied data obtained from 9,952 women of childbearing age who participated in the C8 Health Project – all of them had been exposed to C8. They found that pregnant women had lower concentrations of C8 in their blood than women who were not pregnant.  They also learned that C8 levels were consistently lower throughout all trimesters of pregnancy, suggesting “transfer to the fetus at an early stage of gestation”.

The study authors concluded that further study is urgently needed to understand the implications of C8 exposure during critical periods of fetal development.

As a result of the class action settlement agreement, people who live in the Mid-Ohio Valley and who have been drinking C8 contaminated water are now able to proceed with their own personal injury claims against DuPont. The class action settlement agreement indicates that DuPont may not dispute that C8 can cause the specific diseases which the C8 Science Panel has linked to exposure.

Water districts found to be contaminated with C8 include Belpre, Tuppers Plains, Little Hocking and Pomeroy, Ohio and Lubeck and Mason County, West Virginia.  Under the terms of the class action settlement agreement, the criteria for filing a personal injury claim is not based on an individual’s current place of residence. The class involves anyone who lived or worked within the contaminated water districts and consumed the water for a year or more prior to December 3, 2004.

To learn more about legal representation available to persons who believe they may have been affected by C8 contamination, please contact the Ohio law firm of Slater & Zurz LLP for a free consultation and find out if you have a claim involving C8 and your health by calling 1-888-534-4850 or visit their webpage at and fill out a FREE CASE REVIEW FORM located on the top right hand side of the page.

Slater & Zurz LLP has partnered with Marietta, Ohio attorney Ethan Vessels to represent people victimized by C8 on an individual basis, NOT as part of a class action lawsuit.

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About slaterzurz

Slater & Zurz LLP is an Ohio law firm of highly experienced and respected attorneys. Over the last 40 years, we have developed a reputation for getting positive results for clients. We've been trusted with handling over 20,000 personal injury cases and our clients have received more than $120,000,000.

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