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posted by janrinok on Wednesday July 30 2014, @07:04PM   Printer-friendly
from the Monsanto-is-having-a-bad-week dept.

Monsanto's RoundUp, a widely used pesticide, uses the active ingredient Glyphosate and it may be up for another serious beating. Medical specialists and scientists in Sri Lanka has found that when glyphosate comes in contact with heavy metals like cadmium, arsenic, manganese and cobalt which exist naturally in the soil or fertilizer, it becomes highly toxic and has a high likelihood of causing fatal kidney disease for anyone that comes into contact with it. And because the substance binds to metals it will not show up in current tests. The report (and another one) is published in International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health and has resulted in that the Sri Lanka president to ban glyphosate immediately.

Exposure to glyphosate causes a drop in amino acid tryptophan levels, which interrupts the necessary active signalling of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which is associated with weight gain, depression, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease. The report show that industry and regulators knew as long ago as the 1980's and 1990's that glyphosate causes malformation, but that information was not made public. Glyphosate is also a teratogenic.

Monsanto has been in the news quite recently.

 
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  • (Score: 4, Informative) by TheLink on Thursday July 31 2014, @02:09PM

    by TheLink (332) on Thursday July 31 2014, @02:09PM (#75915) Journal

    Here's the problem: Roundup is not only glyphosate:
    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/weed-whacking-herbicide-p/ [scientificamerican.com]

    Until now, most health studies have focused on the safety of glyphosate, rather than the mixture of ingredients found in Roundup. But in the new study, scientists found that Roundup's inert ingredients amplified the toxic effect on human cells-even at concentrations much more diluted than those used on farms and lawns.

    One specific inert ingredient, polyethoxylated tallowamine, or POEA, was more deadly to human embryonic, placental and umbilical cord cells than the herbicide itself - a finding the researchers call "astonishing."

    So many of those tests saying Roundup is safe because glyphosate is safe are in doubt.

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  • (Score: 2) by Reziac on Friday August 01 2014, @03:02AM

    by Reziac (2489) on Friday August 01 2014, @03:02AM (#76224) Homepage

    But that can be an It Depends: If we mix glyphospate with X, Y, and Z to create Roundup, can we use less Roundup, and less of various chemicals in total? Or are X Y and Z required to get a good level of kill in the field? without X Y and Z, might we need a whole bunch higher level of glyphosphate to do the same job?

    I recall the uproar over malathion spraying in California... turns out the malathion wasn't the problem; it was the petroleum-based carrier that ate car paint and was potentially toxic.