Lawmakers want FDA to boot phthalates

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Members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee are asking FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg to assess the agency's authority to regulate phthalates and get the chemicals out of US pharmaceuticals.

Regulatory Focus reports that the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research said back in 2012 that it wanted to reduce the use of some phthalates in pharmaceuticals because animal studies showed an association between exposure and reproductive toxicity. (There's also been lobbying to get them out of US cosmetics.)

Representatives Henry Waxman (D-CA), Frank Pallone Jr. (D-NJ) and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) are urging action now, based on a report by the Consumer Product Commission's Chronic Hazard Panel on Phthalates which said phthalates are a significant risk to human health.

The writers called the report alarming, and ask the FDA to act well before the 180-day period window provided by the consumer commission.

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