A new study published in the May print edition of the journal Pediatrics, found Russian boys with high levels of lead in their blood experienced a delay in puberty.

The study was conducted by a team of American and Russian researchers affiliated with Harvard University, Russian Academy of Sciences, Brigham and Women's Hospital, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Chapaevsk Medical Association and Samara State Medical University.

489 Russian boys aged 8-9 living in Chapaevsk, Russia joined the study during 2003- 2005, noted the study's authors. The researchers monitored the boys annually until May 2008 for blood lead levels (BLLs) and puberty. To measure the beginning stages of puberty the participants' physician-assessed testicular volume (TV), pubic hair growth and pubertal staging was monitored.

The results showed a direct link between higher BLLs and "later pubertal onset in this prospective study of peripubertal Russian boys".

This study confirms the need to create healthy environments for your children as the impact can impact generations. Avoid using lead-based paints and try to create a home without toxins.

Full study, "Blood Lead Levels and Delayed Onset of Puberty in a Longitudinal Study of Russian Boys": http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/abstract/125/5/e1088