Washington, DC: Colgate Palmolive' Total Toothpaste containing the antibacterial agent triclosan, a chemical linked to cancer, is facing new questions over how the product was FDA approved in 1997. Colgate Palmolive uses triclosan in Colgate Total to prevent gum disease, however, Triclosan has been linked to cancer-cell growth and disrupted development in animals, and many companies are ceasing to put it in other products, such as hand soaps.
According to a report by Bloomberg, recently released portions of the Total application show that the FDA relied on company-backed science and might not have done enough due diligence before approving the use of triclosan in the toothpaste, according to three scientists who reviewed the documents at Bloomberg' request.
Additionally, regulators are reviewing whether triclosan is safe to use other everyday household products including soap, cutting boards and toys. Many consumer companies are phasing it out. In May 2014, the state of Minnesota voted to ban it from many products.
In 2013, the FDA announced it would review the effects of the agent as a result of data from animal studies which suggest the antibacterial could cause hormonal problems or infertility. "At this time they've seen an effect in animals.