Volatility

July 31, 2015

Module: Glyphosate Causes Birth Defects

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A summary of the evidence.
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*Both Roundup and glyphosate by itself caused malformations in chicken and frog embryos at doses far below agricultural applications. This 2010 lab study, performed by Argentine scientist Andres Carrasco and his research team, gave laboratory confirmation of the kinds of birth defects which epidemiological studies (see below) find to be rampant among humans living in the industrial soy zone. The researchers identified glyphosate’s interference with the retinoic acid signaling pathway as the likely mechanism of toxicity. This is one of the many disproofs of the standard lie that glyphosate cannot harm people because it affects only the shikimate pathway which is found only in plants. A subsequent module will focus on glyphosate’s mechanisms of human toxicity.
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*A lab study from 2007 exposed rat mothers to Roundup during pregnancy and lactation. The doses were not found to be toxic to the mothers. Male offspring showed decreased sperm count, lower levels of sperm production, a heightened percentage of abnormal sperm, lower serum testosterone at puberty, and sperm cell degeneration.
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*A 2003 lab study found skeletal malformations in rat fetuses after their mothers had been given maternally non-toxic doses of Roundup.
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*A 2003 lab study found that commercial glyphosate formulation caused death and, at lower doses, malformations in tadpoles.
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*A Russian researcher found that female rats fed Roundup Ready soybean meal produced litters with over 55% of the pups stunted. This was 6-9X the rate found in two groups not given the Roundup-laced feed. The stunted rats died within three weeks, while the non-stunted survivors were sterile.
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*Monsanto’s own studies on glyphosate (they seem never to have tested Roundup) found that maternal exposure to glyphosate in rabbits and rats, at both maternally toxic and at lower, maternally non-toxic doses, caused birth defects in offspring. European regulators tendentiously dismissed the data even though the UK’s Pesticides Safety Directorate (PSD) itself said the industry’s own studies established “a pattern” of birth defects.
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*A 2009 review of Monsanto’s own studies found that Roundup causes necrosis and apoptosis (two kinds of cell death) in human umbilical, placental, and embryonic cells.
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*A 2005 lab study found that glyphosate damages human placental cells and is an aromatase inhibitor. This highlights the fact that glyphosate is an endocrine disruptor and causes developmental harm in many ways because of this. I’ll be devoting a module to glyphosate as endocrine disruptor, where there will also be more birth defect evidence, because these overlap. Glyphosate’s interference with estrogen production also associates it with breast cancer.
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*A 1997 epidemiological study of farming families in Ontario found a that the father’s exposure to glyphosate-based herbicides was significantly correlated with late miscarriages and premature births.
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*An epidemiological study carried out in California with publications in 2004 and 2006 found that Roundup exposure can lead to anencephaly, a birth defect of neural tubes or the brain and spinal structures, in which part of the skull and brain are missing. This finding along with the Argentine epidemiological studies is consistent with the lab studies which find that Roundup and glyphosate consistently impair central nervous system development. Monsanto’s own studies have also found that glyphosate harms skull development.
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Epidemiological studies from the world’s Roundup ground zero, the “Soy Republic” of Argentina, provide copious data on the effects of this poison on exposed residents, especially birth defects, reproductive problems, and cancer.
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*The 2010 Cordoba Conference of the Physicians of Fumigated Towns reported on the many health horrors the doctors documented from the Roundup zone, including an epidemic of birth defects, miscarriages, infertility, and neurological development problems in children, as well as very high cancer rates among children, young adults, and older adults.
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*Also in 2010 a government-commissioned report on the health of the glyphosate-saturated Chaco province found, among other epidemics, that birth defects quadrupled and childhood cancer rates tripled in the ten years of Roundup Ready soy cultivation.
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*Regional birth reports in the Chaco province documented a quadrupling of birth defects among villages in the Roundup zone.This spurred a multi-year study comparing Chaco villages within the Roundup zone to villages outside, which further documented the birth defects and reproductive problems and found much higher cancer rates in the Roundup-saturated area.
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*Most recently, a University of Cordoba study in the town of Monte Maiz, located near the Roundup fields and also used for grain storage, found massive glyphosate residues in the soil and air and documented a rate of spontaneous abortions five times the national average, a tripling of the miscarriage rate, as well as cancer rates five times the national average along with a long list of other severe health effects such as soaring rates of diabetes.
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*Danish farmer Ib Borup Pederson whose pigs were suffering an epidemic of birth defects, reduced live births, diarrhea, bloating, and poor appetite found that these symptoms, which developed after he had started using GM-based animal feed, disappeared when he switched back to non-GM feed. The feed was based primarily on Roundup Ready soy, and Pederson supposes the main problem was the Roundup residue. Based on Pederson’s experience, the Danish government announced a plan to conduct a study on the effects of different soy-based diets on pig health.
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*Retired USDA scientist Don Huber has been a leading figure documenting the severe epidemic of reproductive problems and birth defects among US livestock since Roundup-laced animal feed became the norm. Although there are several possible causes of the epidemic, each is related to Roundup, either as directly caused by it or else associated with it.
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Earth Open Source’s report, “Roundup and birth defects: Is the public being kept in the dark?”, summarizes the proven history of the European system’s conscious knowledge. The US regulatory knowledge has been even more precocious.
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Taken together, the industry studies and regulatory documents on which the current approval of glyphosate rests reveal that:

● Industry (including Monsanto) has known since the 1980s 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 its DG SANCO division published its final review report, laying out the basis for the current approval of glyphosate.

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As always where dealing with the corporate science paradigm and its corrupt system, we must keep in mind that much of the most damning evidence is being kept secret by Monsanto and the US and German governments. These continue to stonewall and refuse to render public much of the information they have, under the rubric of protecting “trade secrets”. But where it comes to science no secret has any right to exist, and to assert or find such a right is prima facie proof of one’s bad faith and malign intent.
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By definition there can be no such thing as “secret science”. You can have science, whose results are part of the public record, or you can have secrecy. In that case reason and common sense must assume that the evidence is devastating to the secret-keeper. This, along with the absolute, systematic refusal of the government and corporations to perform legitimate safety testing on any GMO or pesticide, comprises negative proof that the corporations know or fear the worst. They live in terror of what would become of them and their criminal products if the truth came to light.
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We can regard this as definitively proven and go on from there.
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For further reading:
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http://earthopensource.org/gmomythsandtruths/sample-page/4-health-hazards-roundup-glyphosate/4-1-myth-roundup-safe-herbicide-low-toxicity-animals-humans/
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http://earthopensource.org/wp-content/uploads/RoundupandBirthDefectsv5.pdf
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http://www.i-sis.org.uk/glyphosateCausesBirthDefects.php
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http://www.i-sis.org.uk/Why_Glyphosate_Should_be_Banned.php
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http://www.gmwatch.org/index.php/news/archive/2015-articles/16090-the-case-for-banning-roundup-dr-jeff-ritterman
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http://www.gmeducation.org/food-and-health/p216779-argentina-s-genetically-engineered-hell.html
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May 13, 2014

Andres Carrasco, Scientist for the People

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Argentine molecular biologist Andres Carrasco has died at age 67. Carrasco’s legacy includes his pioneering lab study on the effects of glyphosate on animal health. He and his team demonstrated that glyphosate causes birth defects in amphibians (classic “indicator species” in ecology and biology) and chickens. He theorized that the main mechanism of these effects is retinoic acid oversignaling triggered by the poison. This regular pathway of glyphosate function is just as potent as glyphosate’s inhibition of the EPSPS pathway, which is the “intended” function which makes it a potent herbicide. So glyphosate is an herbicide, and it’s equally a human/animal toxin. The corporate/government system has systematically propagated it as the former, while suppressing the evidence of its concurrent function as the latter. 
 
Carrasco’s lab work corroborated epidemiological surveys which found high levels of birth defects, reproductive failure, and cancer among rural Argentines heavily exposed to the Roundup spraying which is omnipresent on the great soy plantations of the country.
 
Carrasco tirelessly and courageously publicized his findings in the face of the smear campaigns, character assassination, dirty tricks, violent threats, and violence which are typical in the experience of those who question the agricultural poison regime. We must always keep in mind that there’s a smooth continuum from the Internet trolls who try to shout down GMO skeptics to the thugs who physically assault scientists and community activists.
 
Along with his colleagues who conducted the epidemiological research, Carrasco has provided the one-two punch knocking out any claim that Roundup is safe. He and his colleagues have proven that Roundup causes birth defects and reproductive failure, and have provided a strong link between Roundup and cancer.
 
Referring to his work, he’s often been quoted saying, “You can’t block out the sun with one hand.” The hacks of poison-based agriculture and the ignorant conformists who enable them continue to try to do so. They believe that because they temporarily have more brute power, therefore might makes right even where it comes to truth itself. But nature’s truths continue to blaze over and through, diminishing that pathetic hand-wave of lies to nothing. Today we suffer from a temporary bout of insanity which is enabling history’s most vicious evil. Centuries hence, when humanity has rebuilt the soil and enjoys the prosperity of a productive natural agriculture, people will look back at these times and shake their heads in disbelief at how such madness can have been possible. They’ll also celebrate the legacy of those who fought the great evil, refuted the lies, and tried to draw attention to the sun. Andres Carrasco will be remembered as one of the few real scientists of this time, which means someone who always followed where the evidence led, and did so always conscious of the fact that the purpose of science is to serve humanity, not to be a mercenary tool helping to enslave and destroy it.

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