October 25, 2013
From the moment they are born, sea turtles fight to survive. Buried alive, they dig themselves out and evade hungry crabs and birds as they crawl to the ocean, where they begin a long and treacherous migration. One out of 1,000 will survive into adulthood. And those that do will bear a toxic burden.
To see if the damage to reptiles mirrors the damage seen in mammals, Celine Godard-Codding, an environmental toxicologist at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, has been examining how turtle cells respond to PFCs. Preliminary data from her lab found that PFOA doses that are toxic to mammalian cells will also kill 80 percent of reptilian cells tested. More recent experiments with PFOS found similar results.