Scientists Link Monsanto’s Glyphosate To Birth Defects


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Glyphosate SprayingAnother credible study can be added to the list of research that shows how Monsanto’s glyphosate, otherwise known as ’roundup herbicide’ can be hazardous to human health. This time, its been linked to birth defects. Roundup, also known as Glyphosate is a herbicide used to kill weeds. It started to be used en mass by farmers when they realized they could spray it without killing their crops. Of course these are herbicide resistant genetically modified (GMO) crops that have been designed to be resistant to the herbicide.

A group of scientists put together a comprehensive review of existing data that shows how European regulators have known that Monsanto’s glyphosate causes a number of birth malformations since at least 2002. Regulators misled the public about glyphosate’s safety, and in Germany the Federal Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety told the European Commission that there was no evidence to suggest that glyphosate causes birth defects(3).

This study was published by Earth Open Sources, which is an organization that uses open source collaboration to advance sustainable food production. The report was headed by Dr M. Antoniou, Head Gene Expression and Therapy Group, from the Department of Medical and Molecular Genetics at King’s College London School of Medicine, UK. Dr. Antoniou was joined by 6 other doctors who have a similar biography. The report provides a comprehensive review of the peer-reviewed scientific literature documenting the serious health hazards posed by glyphosate and Roundup herbicide formulations. You can read the entire document here.

Our examination of the evidence leads us to the conclusion that the current approval of glyphosate and Roundup is deeply flawed and unreliable. In this report, we examine the industry studies and regulatory documents that led to the approval of glyphosate. We show that industry and regulators knew as long ago as the 1980s and 1990s that glyphosate causes malformation – but that this information was not made public. We demonstrate how EU regulators reasoned their way from clear evidence of glyphosate’s teratogenicity in industry’s own studies to a conclusion that minimized these findings in the EU Commission’s final review report (3)(4).

Summary of Report

  • Multiple peer-reviewed scientific literature documenting serious health hazards posed by glyphosate
  • Industry (including Monsanto) has known since the 1980′s that glyphosate causes malformations in experimental animals at high doses
  • Industry has known since 1993 that these effects could also occur at lower and mid doses
  • The German government has known since at least 1998 that glyphosate causes malformations
  • The EU Commission’s expert scientific review panel knew in 1999 that glyphosate causes malformations
  • The EU Commission has known since 2002 that glyphosate causes malformations. This was the year DG SANCO division published its final review report, laying out the basis for the current approval of glyphosate

More Evidence

The report mentioned above outlines an enormous amount of evidence to support the claim that glyphosate is hazardous to human health, but it’s never a bad idea to provide more. Multiple studies are making their way into the public domain that illustrate just how hazardous Monsanto’s glyphosate could possibly be.

Here is another study that shows Glyphosate can cause abnormalities. It was published in 2010 by the American Chemical Society, the research was conducted at the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

The direct effect of glyphosate on early mechanisms of morphogenesis in vertebrate embryos opens concerns about the clinical findings from human offspring in populations exposed to glyphosate in agricultural fields (5)

Not too long ago, a groundbreaking study revealed that Glyphosate is responsible for fuelling breast cancer by increasing the number of breast cancer cells through cell growth and cell division (1), you can read more about that here. It was also determined that Glyphosate can cause Autism, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease (2), you can read more about that here. What might be more alarming in recent news is that the EPA raised its allowable concentration of Monsanto’s glyphosate on food crops. You can read more about that here.

Sources:

(1)http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23756170

(2)http://www.mdpi.com/1099-4300/15/4/1416

http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/roundup-and-birth-defects-public-being-kept-dark

http://nfuontario.ca/upload/files/userfiles/12542-lab-study-establishes-glyphosate-link-to-birth-defects.pdf

(3)http://earthopensource.org/files/pdfs/Roundup-and-birth-defects/RoundupandBirthDefectsv5.pdf

(4)http://earthopensource.org/files/pdfs/Roundup-and-birth-defects/Antoniou-Teratogenic-Effects-of-Glyphosate-Based-Herbicides.pdf

(5)http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/tx1001749

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/07/roundup-birth-defects-herbicide-regulators_n_872862.html

http://www.gmls.eu/beitraege/113_Carrasco.pdf

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  6. We knew from the results of agent orange and it’s effects on the populations in Vietnam how dangerous this is. I do not need a study of it to know it is harmful to humans. We need to do study on farming and better practices. There are many good articles and studies to read and focus on these rather than how best to kill everything on the planet. We are being poisoned, we are becoming immune to antibiotics because of overuse and the weeds are becoming resistant to monsanto poisons so they will need to continually need stronger poisons which are already harming us. It’s time to really address these issues or all plant life will be in danger. We can feed all people without harming the environment.

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  8. Hank

    farmers point of view:
    Glyphosates are old now and no more solely owned by Monsanto. Roundup is one brand name and there are many others by other companies. Glyphosates are crucial in feeding the world. It is probably the most used herbicide in the world as it kills most plants. Typically its used before (and after) the actual growth of crops – kill weeds before seeding the crops. It indeed seems to be quite quickly breaking compound (not only according to monsanto) thus it doesn’t interfere with the crops. The much more questionable use is spraying near ready crops to kill it upright (naturally not done on round up ready crops). This is done to guarantee even condition and dryness etc. when harvesting. This is not common in this corner of the world but I think it might be becoming so. This is suspicious as the stuff is actually getting on the plants that will be eaten.

    Glyphosates are so widely used and relied on that it would be impossible to feed the people and the meat without it. It is especially relied on low/no tilling farming where soil is better preserved by less messing with the top soil. Benefit in no/low tilling farming are: less carbon released from soil (compared to plowghing), much better water management be it wet or dry year, less erosion and less nutrients leaking into waterways (major pollution problem) and much less diesel fuel burned as much less work is done on the field. But with the mechanical manipulation goes away also the mechanical weed management. So the compromise is that herbicide based weed management needs to be done well and well timed.

    Roundup ready ™ plants are not THAT common at least here and GMO is not allowed anywhere in the EU. Only those special plants can survive (well there are weeds that are resistant) glyphosates. So at least in this part: “It started to be used en mass by farmers when they realized they could spray it without killing their crops.” the piece is very misleading.

    I didn’t read the actual study – instead spent the time typing this But I think its crucial to understand how and when the stuff is dangerous. For example the farmers getting exposed to it when spraying it is quite different from crops sprayed with it being dangerous. And sprayed when and how. I personally don’t think we can have this many billion of people without (often nasty) chemicals as part of farming and the alternative of not using herbicides is not necessarily any better for the environment for example. Open studies, education of users and consumers with responsible use is of course needed. From all the studies I skimmed from the footnotes (I only checked the ones with data- not conjecture and speculation) it seems that the issue is with farming population not consumers of food.

    I also hate Monsanto – and anyone registering genes existing in nature and otherwise being evil and owns government – but glyphosates are so common and been around so long that I would be quite surprised if the risks were significant. You know those warnings on beer bottles or detergents – I still drink beer.

    And lovelly, if you want to arrest the owner of Monsanto – well he better buy a lot of zip ties as its publicly traded company = thousands and thousands of stock owners. https://www.google.com/finance?q=NYSE:MON

    for reference: I am in Scandinavia, GMO is forbidden here as in all of EU (though some articles on this site seem to be confused about it). I see use of micro herbicides (extremely little concentrations are efficient) and ground effecting (the effect can last even a year) much more scary than the glyphosates. Of course I don’t have very clear idea of the amounts used with the GMO crops. As the stuff isn’t exactly free I doubt very high amounts are used even if the money crop could survive it.

    • Hank

      if anyone read my post: I did 1st type it without reading many of the footnotes then skimmed several.

  9. lovelly

    if I come across the owner of Monsanto I am going to make a citizens arrest

  10. Linda

    Thanks Arjun,
    Monsanto are going down…..that’s my dream I hope will soon be realized.

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