The most unpleasant is the fact that these conditions are quite typical for a situation in which a person may need a sunblock. Scientists of the Chemistry Faculty of Moscow State University showed into what harmful chemical compounds avobenzone breaks after interaction with chlorinated water and ultraviolet radiation.
Avobenzone, a derivative of the chemical compound dibenzoylmethane, patented in 1973, in 1988 was approved by the US Agency of the US Ministry of Health FDA, which is engaged in quality control of food, medicines, cosmetics and tobacco products. The ability of avobenzone to absorb ultraviolet radiation in a wide range of wavelengths led to the fact that many manufacturers began to use it in their products: lipsticks, creams and other cosmetics.
Millions of people around the world use sunscreens, which include avobenzone. This substance "transforms" the energy of light into heat energy and absorbs ultraviolet, thereby protecting the person. By themselves, they are indeed harmless, scientists say. However, as the study showed, in reality the situation is somewhat less favorable. Russian scientists managed to show that in aqueous solution it is able to break into harmful chemical compounds, including directly on wet human skin.
Scientists from the Moscow State University established what products are formed during the decomposition of avobenzone in chlorinated water and under the influence of sunlight. These experiments simulated the real situation, when sunscreen on the skin of bathing people comes into contact with water in swimming pools. It turned out that in water the component is destroyed with the formation of two dozen organic compounds belonging to the classes of aromatic acids and aldehydes, phenols and acetophenones. Among the most toxic - phenols and chlorinated acetophenones. The latter, in particular chloroacetophenone, are part of tear mixtures, which the police use to disperse rallies.
Scientists state that in general, a safe compound is transformed in water with the formation of relatively dangerous products. Although there are no precise toxicological characteristics for most of the established products, it is known that acetophenones and phenols, especially chlorinated ones, are highly toxic.
Studying the products of transformation of any popular cosmetic drug is very important, as they are often much more toxic and dangerous than their predecessors. In principle, based on such studies, it is possible to obtain results that will limit or even ban the use of a given product, preserving health for millions of people.
Now scientists are studying the transformation of avobenzone in chlored or bromed fresh and seawater. When chlorination or bromination of sea water, the range of avobenzone decomposition products will be even wider, and if there are copper salts in water (in many pools they are added to obtain beautiful blue color), then bromoform is formed in large quantities, which can cause liver and kidney disorders, and disruption of the nervous system.