Emerging forever chemicals found in drinking water and humans

A newly released study led by researchers from Emory University‘s Rollins School of Public Health was one of the first to find an emerging class of “forever chemicals” in the homes, drinking water and bodies of United States residents.

Key takeaways

  • More than 300 samples from the homes, drinking water and blood and urine of 81 participants were studied.
  • Elevated levels of ultrashort- and short-chain PFAS were found in most household dust samples, drinking water and participants’ blood and urine.
  • The levels of ultrashort PFAS found in household dust and drinking water were several times greater than the levels of legacy PFAS. In serum samples, the levels were either higher or comparable.

Scientists do not yet know the source of these compounds. They also do not know their potential impact on the health of humans and/or the environment. There is also not enough information yet on what precautions people can take to reduce their exposure.

Learn more about JPB Fellow Stephanie Eick’s research.