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New scientific study reveals adverse effects of mixtures of pesticides

Each one of us, regardless of age, is exposed daily to dozens of synthetic chemicals. The toxicity and health effects from these mixtures are largely unknown. Générations Futures and Antidote Europe, an independent research organization, joined forces to address this urgent problem and initiated a scientific study looking at harmful effects of mixtures of some commonly used pesticides. The aim of the study was to evaluate health risks of chemical mixtures versus single pesticides.

Professor Michael Coleman, who led the study on cell impacts stressed that the work showed that some pesticides, alone or in combination, can induce stress and significantly affect human cells. They can also interfere with basic cellular processes such as energy production. These effects were demonstrated at concentrations similar to those found in our food. This work suggests that we should make greater efforts to restrict pesticide use in crops intended for food.

The results build upon a study about pesticides and chemicals contamination of children’s daily food, which HEAL and GF launched in 2010. Under the Toxics Menu investigation, non-organic food items making up the typical daily intake of a 10 year old were bought in various supermarkets and tested for chemical residues. The results showed the chemical cocktail that children were exposed to from food alone. Findings showed 128 trace elements representing 81 different chemical substances. These substances included 36 different pesticides and 47 suspected carcinogens.

The results of this scientific study were recently published under the title: A preliminary investigation into the impact of a pesticide combination on human neuronal and glial cell lines in vitro, MD Coleman et al. See www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0042768

Originally posted on 5 September 2012

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