5&5 – News and Science Highlights from December 2010

January 25, 2011 at 6:02 pm | Posted in News and Science Bulletins | Leave a comment


Farmers Wage Organic Battle Against Pests and Weeds: A thought-provoking NYT article about the growing understanding among organic farmers of ways to harness natural systems as part of what is called integrated pest management.

The Long REACH of Chemical Information: A very helpful overview of the significance of the most recent REACH milestone: as of 1 Dec 2010, companies operating in the EU cannot make or import high-volume, or certain high-hazard, chemicals unless they have been “registered”.

UK says it will ignore medical advice on pesticide-spraying: The Ecologist reports that the public will not have to be notified when crops, fields or parks are being sprayed with pesticides, despite warnings from the British Medical Association.

The Bad Daddy Factor: Over the last half-century, few researchers even considered the possibility that men played a role in prenatal health. Now a critical mass of research demonstrates that environmental exposures – from paints to pesticides – can cause men to father children with all sorts of abnormalities.

Denmark to ban parabens in children’s products: Denmark will shortly introduce draft national legislation proposing a ban on the use of propyl and butyl parabens in cosmetic and personal care products intended for use by children under three.


Long-term exposure to pesticides may be linked to dementia: The results of this study suggest long-term cognitive effects of chronic exposure to pesticides and is the first to provide prospective data on the natural history of neurological disorders associated with pesticide exposure.

Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: A Focused Overview for Children’s Environmental Health Researchers: Review concluding that there are substantial behavioural, neuroanatomical and neurochemical differences between children diagnosed with ADHD and non-ADHD controls, analysis of which may help to identify possible environmental risk factors for ADHD.

Perinatal Exposure to Environmentally Relevant Levels of Bisphenol-A Decreases Fertility and Fecundity in CD-1 Mice: A study showing that perinatal exposure to BPA leads to a dose-dependent decline in the reproductive capacity of female mice. The effects are comparable to those seen in mice exposed to diethylstilbestrol, suggesting the possibility that early BPA exposure may also impact reproductive capacity in women.

Correspondence: PBDEs and Thyroid Hormones during Pregnancy: A critique of recent research suggesting that exposure to PBDE flame retardants alters thyroid hormone levels during pregnancy. The researchers offered a vigorous defence of their findings.

Exposure to Polyfluoroalkyl Chemicals and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder in U.S. Children 12–15 Years of Age: Study in which the authors report that serum levels of four PFCs were positively associated with ADHD, and recommend additional studies to confirm these associations.

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