New Insights into Mechanisms of Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals in Thyroid Diseases: The Epigenetic Way


In recent years, the presence in the environment of chemical compounds with thyroid-disrupting effects is progressively increased. This phenomenon has risen concern for human health as the preservation of thyroid system homeostasis is essential for fetal development and for maintaining psychological and physiological wellbeing. An increasing number of studies explored the role of different classes of toxicants in the occurrence and severity of thyroid diseases, but large epidemiological studies are limited and only a few animal or in vitro studies have attempted to identify the mechanisms of chemical action. Recently, epigenetic changes such as alteration of methylation status or modification of non-coding RNAs have been suggested as correlated to possible deleterious effects leading to different thyroid disorders in susceptible individuals. This review aims to analyze the epigenetic alterations putatively induced by chemical exposures and involved in the onset of frequent thyroid diseases such as thyroid cancer, autoimmune thyroiditis and disruption of fetal thyroid homeostasis.

Authors: Letizia Pitto, Francesca Gorini, Fabrizio Bianchi, Elena Guzzolino
; Full Source: International journal of environmental research and public health 2020 Oct 24;17(21):E7787. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17217787.