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Study reveals dangerous chemicals in our bodies

A new study is giving us a glimpse of what a statewide system of testing for chemicals in our bodies might reveal. The tests come as California lawmakers are pushing legislation to create the first such program in the country. Sacramento reporter Marianne Russ has more.

The Environmental Working Group commissioned the study which included four mother-daughter pairs. It found in their bodies an average of 35 chemicals like flame retardants and stain-proof coatings. Seventeen-year-old Heather Gellert was a participant.

Gellert: Finding that the chemicals , the carcinogenic chemicals that were found are present in my body, like thalates and biphenyl A, it's sickened me.

Gellert supports legislation that would create a statewide system of testing for chemicals - so-called biomonitoring. Its authors say it will help discover how exposure to toxic chemicals impacts diseases like cancer. But opponents claim it would cause panic, and knowing which chemicals are present would be useless without the proper scientific context. Governor Schwarzenegger vetoed a similar bill last year.

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