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Birth defects linked to pesticides.

Winchester PD, Huskins J, Ying J. Agrichemicals in surface water and birth defects in the United States. Acta Paediatrica, 2009; 98(4): 664-9.

Birth defect rates in the US were highest for women conceiving in the spring and summer, a period that correlated with increased levels of pesticides in surface water across the US, say researchers. Studying all 30.1 million US births from 1996 to 2002, researchers found a strong association between an increased number of birth defects in children of women whose last menstrual period occurred in April, May, June or July and elevated levels of nitrates, atrazine and other pesticides in surface water in the same months. Many of these chemicals--including the herbicide atrazine that is banned in Europe but permitted in the US--are suspected to be harmful to the developing embryo, this is the first study to link their increased seasonal concentration in surface water with the peak in birth defects in infants conceived in the same months.
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Publication:Community Practitioner
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:May 1, 2009
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