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CDC studies impact of 'forever chemical' exposure on COVID-19 antibodies

CDC studies impact of 'forever chemical' exposure on COVID-19 antibodies
© New York Times/Pool

A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study could assess the impacts that exposure to a class of cancer-linked chemicals called PFAS will have on how well people respond to COVID-19 vaccination. 

CDC Director Robert RedfieldRobert RedfieldFauci defends Birx: 'She had to live in the White House' US considering mandatory COVID-19 tests for domestic flyers, CDC official says CDC gets a second opinion: Seven steps to heal our COVID-19 response MORE said a study by the Centers and Agency for Toxic Substances will “evaluate the association between PFAS levels and antibody response to SARS-CoV-2, infection and waning of antibodies over time” in a letter sent to Rep. Dan KildeeDaniel (Dan) Timothy KildeeAmazon manager sues company over racial discrimination, harassment allegations Democratic fury with GOP explodes in House Biden pledges action on guns amid resistance MORE (D-Mich.). 

The letter was sent to Kildee last month, but was only publicized by an advocacy group on Friday.  

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Redfield added that the assessment “may shed light on the potential impact of PFAS exposure on vaccine response.”

PFAS chemicals are often called forever chemicals because of their persistence in nature and the human body. They have been found in a variety of products as well as drinking water.

Past research has linked exposure to PFAS chemicals to lowered levels of antibodies in the tetanus and diphtheria vaccinations in children. 

The country has continued to move closer toward distribution of vaccines, and Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar said Friday that the first vaccinations other than those given during a clinical trial of the Pfizer vaccine could be as soon as next week.

However, much of the country isn’t expected to have access to the vaccines for several months.