Perfluorooctanoic acid. PFOA is used as an emulsifier for polymerization when producing fluoropolymers, and is also an impurity contained in trace amounts of fluorinated water and oil repellents. It is a substance that has been found to be present in the blood of humans and wildlife, and has been widely detected in the environment. Since PFOA has the property of accumulating within the body and has been subject to concerns over its toxicity, it has undergone a variety of tests in risk evaluations. At the time of the announcement of preliminary risk investigations by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and draft risk evaluation reports released in January 2005, the results of evaluations on the safety of PFOA with regard to the human body have not yet been clearly determined.
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