On Thursday, the U. S. Food and Drug Administration said that it was assessing the safety of triclosan, an extensively used antiseptic agent found in soap, toothpaste and a variety of other consumer products.
The agency emphasized that there are no arguments to advocate any changes in the utilization of triclosan, but said that some recent studies merited a closer look.
One member of Congress, Massachusetts Democrat, Edward Markey, demanded stringent limits.
Markey said in a statement that in spite of the fact that this chemical is found in everything from soaps to socks, there are several disturbing questions regarding triclosan's efficacy and prospective harmful effects, particularly for kids.
"I call upon the federal government to ban the use of triclosan in consumer soaps and hand-washes, products intended for use by children, and products intended to come into contact with food. In addition, I will soon introduce legislation to speed up the government's efforts to evaluate and regulate other substances that may pose similar public health concerns".
The FDA observed that there was no proof that triclosan could be unsafe for people but noted that an animal study revealed that the chemical might modify hormone regulation, and many other lab researches proved that bacteria might be able to develop resistance to triclosan in a way, which can help them to resist antibiotics also.
Meanwhile, Dr. Sarah Janssen of the Natural Resources Defense Council said, "It's about time FDA has finally stated its concerns about antibacterial chemicals like triclosan".