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Minnesota Bans Anti-Bacterial Chemical Triclosan in Soaps

Widely used in products such as soaps, toothpaste, deodorants

WEDNESDAY, May 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A bill to prohibit the use of triclosan in most retail consumer hygiene products was signed Friday by Gov. Mark Dayton and is scheduled to take effect Jan. 1, 2017. Minnesota is the first state to take such action, the Associated Press reported.

Studies in lab animals have suggested that triclosan may disrupt hormones that play an important role in reproduction and development, while other research indicates that triclosan may contribute to the development of drug-resistant bacteria.

An estimated 75 percent of anti-bacterial soaps and body washes sold in the United States contain triclosan, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The agency and other experts say there's no evidence that soaps with triclosan are more effective than plain soap and water in preventing the spread of diseases, the AP reported.

Extensive research has shown that triclosan provides important health benefits, according to the American Cleaning Institute, which urged Gov. Dayton to veto the bill, the AP reported.

Health Highlights: May 20, 2014

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