WASHINGTON— Facebook Inc. came under heavy fire Thursday for its efforts to target young people, with members of a Senate panel accusing the company of disregarding internal research that showed its Instagram app is harmful for significant numbers of teen girls.

During a three-hour Senate hearing, lawmakers relentlessly pressed a Facebook executive to explain internal documents disclosed by The Wall Street Journal showing that Instagram makes body image issues worse for a substantial minority of teen girls and is blamed by teens for increases in anxiety and depression.

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