California: Although there is ample evidence of the human effects of plastic pollution, research on rats has now shown that plastic microscopic particles can cause high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease.
Plastic bags pass through rivers, canals and streams and eventually reach the sea. At sea, plastics break down and begin to melt into the finest particles, called microplastics.
It has previously been scientifically confirmed that microplastics can enter the lungs and change the shape of the inner cells. Then the idea was that they could cross the line between blood and brain and reach the brain. Popular plastic chemicals such as BPA and others can cause serious brain damage.
However, new research has examined another chemical in plastic, phthalates, which may be present in almost all types of plastics. Earlier, it was learned that one lakh people die prematurely every year due to plastic pollution.
The University of California, Los Angeles has now tested Diclohexal Phthalate (DCHP) on mice. DCHP was found to enter the body of mice and attach to the well-known Pregnancy X receptor (PXR). It is present in the stomach. Now when DCHP attacks PXR and affects it, the natural cholesterol-controlling protein is disturbed and thus the cholesterol in mice starts to rise.
It was later found that DCHP caused rapid growth of fat molecules called ceramides in the blood of mice, which can lead to heart disease in humans. Increasing the amount of DCHP also increased the PXR signaling process itself, which is very dangerous.
According to experts, plastic particles have been found in the depths of the sea and have also been seen at the height of Everest. Even now the World Health Organization (WHO) has started research on it.
According to scientists, this is the first study of its kind to show the effects of the common plastic DCHP on cholesterol and heart.