White children exposed to high levels of bisphenol A are five times more likely to be obese than children with low levels, according to a study published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The research is the first to link the chemical to obesity in children; previous studies reported links in adults and animals. It is unclear why BPA levels were so strongly associated with obesity in white children but not blacks or Hispanics. “It is possible that there is some genetic interaction that may be specific to the [white] population ... but we don’t know,” said Dr. Leonardo Trasande of NYU School of Medicine. Traces of BPA – used in some canned food and beverages, paper receipts and dental sealants – are found in virtually every U.S. adult and child.