Friday, December 11, 2009, 12:00 p.m. EDT
Members of the media are invited to attend a press availability period at noon on Friday, December 18, 2009 that will follow a scientific meeting evaluating the safety of soy infant formula. An independent panel of 14 scientists will evaluate the most current research on soy infant formula to determine whether exposure to soy infant formula is a risk to human development. The expert panel will also indentify data gaps and research needs. The panel is convened by the Center for the Evaluation of Risks to Human Reproduction (CERHR) of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and the National Toxicology Program (NTP).
Soy formula is fed to infants as a supplement or replacement for human milk or cow milk. Soy infant formula contains isoflavones such as genistein, daidzein, and glycitein. These isoflavones are naturally occurring plant estrogens, or phytoestrogens, found at relatively high levels in soybeans and some other plants that can mimic the effects of estrogen in the body. The panel will review available evidence to determine if phytoestrogens in soy infant formula adversely affects human development. The panel will report its findings to the NTP.
The NTP convened a panel in 2006 to evaluate soy formula and genistein. The NTP did not complete the evaluation or issue a final opinion on this topic. Since 2006, a substantial number of new publications have been published for these substances, therefore NTP CERHR determined that an updated evaluation of soy formula is needed before NTP could develop its opinion on this topic. The panel will use all available information to issue new levels of concern conclusions about soy formula.
- Wednesday, December 16, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. EST (Time is set aside on December 16 for oral public comments, limited to seven minutes per speaker or organization.)
- Thursday, December 17, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. EST
- Friday, December 18, 8:30 a.m. to noon EST
- Press Availability: Friday, December 18, 2008, approximately noon to 1:00 p.m. EST
The meeting is open to the public and the media. Details about the meeting, including panelists and agenda, are posted on the NTP Web site at http://cerhr.niehs.nih.gov/evals/genistein-soy/SoyFormulaUpdt/SoyFormula-mtg.html.
Media interested in attending the meeting or the press availability can contact Robin Mackar at 984-287-3355 or email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the National Toxicology Program (NTP): NTP is a federal, interagency program headquartered at NIEHS, whose goal is to safeguard the public by identifying substances in the environment that may affect human health. For more information about NTP and its programs, visit ntp.niehs.nih.gov.
About the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS): NIEHS supports research to understand the effects of the environment on human health and is part of the National Institutes of Health. For more information on NIEHS or environmental health topics, visit www.niehs.nih.gov or subscribe to a news list.
About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.
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