Read the full article from Victoria Wresilo (Spectrum News)
“N.C. State researchers are looking into PFAS and their possible impacts on health.
The GenX Exposure Study is a statewide collaboration of researchers, staff, students, community advisory boards and study participants. Jane Hoppin is the principal investigator.
On Saturday, researchers collected samples of blood and urine from Pittsboro residents to understand how these chemicals may impact human health.
Hoppin says she believes the immune system is most impacted by PFAS. But there is not enough information yet to understand the connection between PFAS and certain disease or illnesses.
‘We don’t necessarily know who has been highly exposed, which is why we are collecting blood samples,’ Hoppin said.
Hoppin said they can detect low levels of legacy PFAS in almost every person in the United States. But there are certain areas like the Cape Fear River Basin where the concentrations of PFAS is significantly higher. That’s why researchers have collected samples from people living in Pittsboro, Fayetteville and Wilmington.
‘We’re hoping to follow everybody for five to 20 years so we can evaluate the potential human health effects of these chemicals,’ Hoppin said.
Once samples are collected they are analyzed in different labs across the state, including N.C. State’s. Kaylie Kirkwood is a doctorate student there who runs tests some of the samples.
‘PFAS travel in many different ways,’ Kirkwood said. ‘So when we look at pine needles, we are looking at PFAS that are in the air. If we look in human blood, we are looking at PFAS that you are being exposed to through what you’re eating or what you’re drinking.’
Kirkwood is originally from Ohio but moved to Wilmington in high school. When she was in her first years at N.C. State, news came out about PFAS in Wilmington’s drinking water.”…