Glyphosate – Safe?? Really???

Benicia man dying of cancer testifies in weed-killer suit against Monsanto

Photo of Bob Egelko

Dewayne Johnson (center), former groundskeeper for the Benicia Unified School District, leaves Department 504 with his wife Araceli Johnson (right) behind attorney Brent Wisner (left) at Superior Court of California during the Monsanto trial on Monday, July 23, 2018 in San Francisco, Calif.

Photo: Lea Suzuki / The Chronicle

A former school groundskeeper, diagnosed with terminal cancer, told a San Francisco jury Monday that he called a Monsanto Co. hotline twice — once before his diagnosis, once after — and asked whether the herbicide he was spraying on the job, the most widely used weed killer in the world, could cause harm to humans.

Both times, Dewayne “Lee” Johnson said, the person at the other end of the line listened to his account of being accidentally doused with the herbicide glyphosate, and said someone would call him back. No one ever did.

“I would never have sprayed the product around school grounds or around people if I thought it would cause them harm,” Johnson told a Superior Court jury hearing his suit against Monsanto. “They deserve better.”

Johnson, 46, of Vallejo, was a groundskeeper and pest-control manager for the Benicia Unified School District from 2012 until May 2016. He was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma in October 2014 and with what his lawyers described as a more aggressive form of the cancer in March 2015.

Even after the latter diagnosis, Johnson said he continued to spray Monsanto’s product, a high-concentration brand of glyphosate called Ranger Pro, until he became convinced that it was dangerous and refused to use it in his final months on the job.

His damage suit, now into its third week, is the first of about 4,000 nationwide to go to trial against Monsanto, now a subsidiary of Bayer. The company markets glyphosate, the world’s leading herbicide, as Roundup, and in higher concentrations, as Ranger Pro. In 2015, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer classified glyphosate as a probable human carcinogen.

Monsanto disputes the assessment, noting that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has never classified glyphosate as a carcinogen or restricted its use. The company’s lawyers also said Johnson’s primary treating physicians have not determined the cause of his cancer.

Earlier Monday, his wife and a physician described Johnson’s deteriorating condition, although he did not appear frail on the witness stand, speaking calmly in a deep, resonant voice. But jurors saw photos of the painful welts and lesions — on his legs, arms, face, and even his eyelids — that have arisen while he undergoes radiation treatment and chemotherapy. Johnson is scheduled for another round of chemotherapy next month and said he would next turn to a bone-marrow transplant.

He has self-published two books and is working on a third — “about people and how they’re judged by their faces” — and hopes he’ll get to finish it. He tries to shield the couple’s two sons, aged 13 and 10, from his bouts of depression and tears, and said that despite a grim prognosis, “I’ll keep fighting till my last breath.”

Araceli Johnson, his wife of 13 years and a nurse practitioner, said she now works 14 hours a day at two jobs to support them. “My world shut down” when her husband told her he had cancer, she told the jury.

Attorney Brent Wisner answers questions from the media at Superior Court of California on Monday, July 23, 2018, in San Francisco, Calif.

Photo: Lea Suzuki / The Chronicle

Johnson started working for the Benicia schools as a delivery driver but then applied to become the district’s first pest-control manager and passed a licensing exam. “I liked the job a lot,” he said, recalling how some students gave him a poster for ridding their school of a skunk.

He said the district told him to use the Ranger Pro form of glyphosate because Roundup wasn’t strong enough to remove all the weeds from hillsides on district-owned property. A supervisor told him the product was safe as long as he wore long-sleeved shirts, pants, shoes and socks.

In addition, Johnson said, he wore a sturdy jacket, rubber gloves, goggles and a face mask while he mixed the herbicide with water in 50-gallon drums and sprayed it 20 to 30 times a year for two to three hours a day, mostly during summer months. But he said he couldn’t fully protect his face from wind-blown spray. And twice, he said, he got drenched with herbicide, once when a spray hose became detached from a truck that was hauling it, and another time when the chemical somehow leaked onto his back. He said he had no access to a shower until much later in the day.

It was after the first exposure, Johnson said, that he started noticing rashes on his skin and called the company hotline.

“I had this uncontrollable situation on my skin, which used to be as perfect as this table,” he said, pointing to the brown witness stand. “It was a very scary, confusing time.”

During cross-examination, Monsanto lawyer Sandra Edwards asked Johnson about his past statement to his doctors that he had first developed a skin rash in the autumn of 2013, before he was accidentally doused with glyphosate. The company has contended that the sequence of events suggests other causes for Johnson’s illness.

“It’s hard to remember all that way back,” said Johnson, whose wife testified that her husband has sometimes suffered memory lapses since his diagnosis. That appeared to be on display early in his testimony Monday, when he said he had stopped working for the school district about five years ago, then was shown a document noting that he had worked there until May 2016.

Jurors also heard from Dr. Ope Ofodile, a dermatologist who coordinated Johnson’s medical treatment at Kaiser Health Care in Vallejo from 2014 through mid-2016. She said she saw him more than 25 times, removed one of his lesions, administered radiation, and wrote a letter in 2015 asking the school board not to expose Johnson to airborne chemicals.

“He was not responding (to treatment). He was heading in the wrong direction,” she said. But “he was very much motivated to get better.”

Bob Egelko is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: begelko@sfchronicle.com

from:    https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/article/Benicia-man-dying-of-cancer-testifies-in-Roundup-13098953.php

Monsanto Pushes to Remove Negative Studies

Study of toxic effects on rats by Roundup

Documents released in US cancer litigation show Monsanto’s desperate attempts to suppress a study that showed adverse effects of Roundup herbicide – and that the editor of the journal that retracted the study had a contractual relationship with the company. Claire Robinson reports

Internal Monsanto documents released by attorneys leading US cancer litigation show that the company launched a concerted campaign to force the retraction of a study that revealed toxic effects of Roundup. The documents also show that the editor of the journal that first published the study entered into a contract with Monsanto in the period shortly before the retraction campaign began.

The study, led by Prof GE Séralini, showed that very low doses of Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide had toxic effects on rats over a long-term period, including serious liver and kidney damage. Additional observations of increased tumour rates in treated rats would need to be confirmed in a larger-scale carcinogenicity study.

The newly released documents show that throughout the retraction campaign, Monsanto tried to cover its tracks to hide its involvement. Instead Monsanto scientist David Saltmiras admitted to orchestrating a “third party expert” campaign in which scientists who were apparently independent of Monsanto would bombard the editor-in-chief of the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology (FCT), A. Wallace Hayes, with letters demanding that he retract the study.

Use of “third party experts” is a classic public relations tactic perfected by the tobacco industry. It consists of putting industry-friendly messages into the mouths of supposedly “independent” experts, since no one would believe industry attempts to defend its own products. Back in 2012, GMWatch founder Jonathan Matthews exposed the industry links of the supposedly independent scientists who lobbied the journal editor to retract the Séralini paper. Now we have first-hand proof of Monsanto’s direct involvement.

In one document, Saltmiras reviews his own achievements within the company, boasting that he “Successfully facilitated numerous third party expert letters to the editor which were subsequently published, reflecting the numerous significant deficiencies, poor study design, biased reporting and selective statistics employed by Séralini. In addition, coauthored the Monsanto letter to the editor with [Monsanto employees] Dan Goldstein and Bruce Hammond.”

Saltmiras further writes of how “Throughout the late 2012 Séralini rat cancer publication and media campaign, I leveraged my relationship [with] the Editor i[n] Chief of the publishing journal… and was the single point of contact between Monsanto and the Journal.”

Another Monsanto employee, Eric Sachs, writes in an email about his efforts to galvanize scientists in the letter-writing campaign. Sachs refers to Bruce Chassy, a scientist who runs the pro-GMO Academics Review website. Sachs writes: “I talked to Bruce Chassy and he will send his letter to Wally Hayes directly and notify other scientists that have sent letters to do the same. He understands the urgency… I remain adamant that Monsanto must not be put in the position of providing the critical analysis that leads the editors to retract the paper.”

In response to Monsanto’s request, Chassy urged Hayes to retract the Séralini paper: “My intent was to urge you to roll back the clock, retract the paper, and restart the review process.”

Chassy was also the first signatory of a petition demanding the retraction of the Séralini study and the co-author of a Forbes article accusing Séralini of fraud. In neither document does Chassy declare any link with Monsanto. But in 2016 he was exposed as having taken over $57,000 over less than two years from Monsanto to travel, write and speak about GMOs.

Sachs is keen to ensure that Monsanto is not publicly seen as attempting to get the paper retracted, even though that is precisely what it is doing. Sachs writes to Monsanto scientist William Heydens: “There is a difference between defending science and participating in a formal process to retract a publication that challenges the safety of our products. We should not provide ammunition for Séralini, GM critics and the media to charge that Monsanto used its might to get this paper retracted. The information that we provided clearly establishes the deficiencies in the study as reported and makes a strong case that the paper should not have passed peer review.”

Another example of Monsanto trying to cover up its involvement in the retraction campaign emerges from email correspondence between Monsanto employees Daniel Goldstein and Eric Sachs. Goldstein states: “I was uncomfortable even letting shareholders know we are aware of this LTE [GMW: probably “Letter to the Editor”]…. It implies we had something to do with it – otherwise how do we have knowledge of it? I could add ‘Aware of multiple letters to editor including one signed by 25 scientists from 14 countries’ if you both think this is OK.” Sachs responds: “We are ‘connected’ but did not write the letter or encourage anyone to sign it.”

A. Wallace Hayes was paid by Monsanto

The most shocking revelation of the disclosed documents is that the editor of Food and Chemical Toxicology, A. Wallace Hayes, entered into a consulting agreement with Monsanto in the period just before Hayes’s involvement in the retraction of the Séralini study. Clearly Hayes had a conflict of interest between his role as a consultant for Monsanto and his role as editor for a journal that retracted a study determining that glyphosate has toxic effects. The study was published on 19 September 2012; the consulting agreement between Hayes and Monsanto was dated 21 August 2012 and Hayes is contracted to provide his services beginning 7 September 2012.

The documents also reveal that Monsanto paid Hayes $400 per hour for his services and that in return Hayes was expected to “Assist in establishment of an expert network of toxicologists, epidemiologists, and other scientists in South America and participate on the initial meeting held within the region. Preparation and delivery of a seminar addressing relevant regional issues pertaining to glyphosate toxicology is a key deliverable for the inaugural meeting in 2013.”

Hayes should have recused himself from any involvement with the Séralini study from the time he signed this agreement. But he kept quiet. He went on to oversee a second “review” of the study by unnamed persons whose conflicts of interest, if any, were not declared – resulting in his decision to retract the study for the unprecedented reason that some of the results were “inconclusive”.

Hayes told the New York Times’s Danny Hakim in an interview that he had not been under contract with Monsanto at the time of the retraction and was paid only after he left the journal. He added that “Monsanto played no role whatsoever in the decision that was made to retract.” But since it took the journal over a year to retract the study after the months-long second review, which Hayes oversaw, it’s clear that he had an undisclosed conflict of interest from the time he entered into the contract with Monsanto and during the review process. He appears to be misleading the New York Times.

The timing of the contract also begs the question as to whether Monsanto knew the publication of the study was coming. If so, they may have been happy to initiate such a relationship with Hayes at just that time.

A Monsanto internal email confirms the company’s intimate relationship with Hayes. Saltmiras writes about the recently published Séralini study: “Wally Hayes, now FCT Editor in Chief for Vision and Strategy, sent me a courtesy email early this morning. Hopefully the two of us will have a follow up discussion soon to touch on whether FCT Vision and Strategy were front and center for this one passing through the peer review process.”

In other email correspondence between various Monsanto personnel, Daniel Goldstein writes the following with respect to the Séralini study: “Retraction – Both Dan Jenkins (US Government affairs) and Harvey Glick made a strong case for withdrawal of the paper if at all possible, both on the same basis – that publication will elevate the status of the paper, bring other papers in the journal into question, and allow Séralini much more freedom to operate. All of us are aware that the ultimate decision is up to the editor and the journal management, and that we may not have an opportunity for withdrawal in any event, but I felt it was worth reinforcing this request.”

Monsanto got its way, though the paper was subsequently republished by another journal with higher principles – and, presumably, with an editorial board that wasn’t under contract with Monsanto.

Why Monsanto had to kill the Séralini study

It’s obvious that it was in Monsanto’s interests to kill the Séralini study. The immediate reason was that it reported harmful effects from low doses of Roundup and a GM maize engineered to tolerate it. But the wider reason that emerges from the documents is that to admit that the study had any validity whatsoever would be to open the doors for regulators and others to demand other long-term studies on GM crops and their associated pesticides.

A related danger for Monsanto, pointed out by Goldstein, is that “a third party may procure funding to verify Séralini’s claims, either through a government agency or the anti-GMO/antl-pesticide financiers”.

The documents show that Monsanto held a number of international teleconferences to discuss how to pre-empt such hugely threatening developments.

Summing up the points from the teleconferences, Daniel Goldstein writes that “unfortunately”, three “potential issues regarding long term studies have now come up and will need some consideration and probably a white paper of some type (either internal or external)”. These are potential demands for
•    2 year rat/long-term cancer (and possibly reproductive toxicity) on GM crops
•    2 year/chronic studies on pesticide formulations, in addition to the studies on the active ingredient alone that are currently demanded by regulators, and
•    2 year rat/chronic studies of pesticide formulations on the GM crop.

In reply to the first point, Goldstein writes that the Séralini study “found nothing other than the usual variation in SD [Sprague-Dawley] rats, and as such there is no reason to question the recent EFSA guidance that such studies were not needed for substantially equivalent crops”. GMWatch readers will not be surprised to see Monsanto gaining support from EFSA in its opposition to carrying out long-term studies on GMOs.

In answer to the second point, Goldstein reiterates that the Séralini study “actually finds nothing – so there is no need to draw any conclusions from it – but the theoretical issue has been placed on the table. We need to be prepared with a well considered response.”

In answer to the third point, Goldstein ignores the radical nature of genetic engineering and argues pragmatically, if not scientifically, “This approach would suggest that the same issue arises for conventional crops and that every individual formulation would need a chronic study over every crop (at a minimum) and probably every variety of crop (since we know they have more genetic variation than GM vs conventional congener) and raises the possibility of an almost limitless number of tests.” But he adds, “We also need a coherent argument for this issue.”

EU regulators side with Monsanto

To the public’s detriment, some regulatory bodies have backed Monsanto rather than the public interest and have backed off the notion that long-term studies should be required for GM crops. In fact, the EU is considering doing awaywith even the short 90-day animal feeding studies currently required under European GMO legislation. This will be based in part on the results of the EU-funded GRACE animal feeding project, which has come under fire for the industry links of some of the scientists involved and for its alleged manipulation of findings of adverse effects on rats fed Monsanto’s GM MON810 maize.

Apology required

A. Wallace Hayes is no longer the editor-in-chief of FCT but is named as an “emeritus editor”. Likewise, Richard E. Goodman, a former Monsanto employee who was parachuted onto the journal’s editorial board shortly after the publication of the Séralini study, is no longer at the journal.

But although they are sidelined or gone, their legacy lives on in the form of a gap in the history of the journal where Séralini’s paper belongs.

Now that Monsanto’s involvement in the retraction of the Séralini paper is out in the open, FCT and Hayes should do the decent thing and issue a formal apology to Prof Séralini and his team. FCT cannot and should not reinstate the paper, because it is now published by another journal. But it needs to draw a line under this shameful episode, admit that it handled it badly, and declare its support for scientific independence and objectivity.

from:    http://gmwatch.org/en/news/latest-news/17764-uncovered-monsanto-campaign-to-get-seralini-study-retracted

Monsanto’s Debunking Dept.

Monsanto Scientist Lets a Massive Secret Slip

by PAUL FASSA

Monsanto RoundupThere’s nothing better than seeing those who work for the devil get their feet caught in their mouths. There have been two events recently that make one cheer for our side as Monsanto embarks on challenging the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) analysis of Roundup as a carcinogenic that was published in the March 2015 journal The Lancet Oncology.

Monsanto’s vice president of global regulatory affairs Philip Miller asserted the following:
“We question the quality of the assessment. The WHO has something to explain.” In other words, we think we have the clout to make sure the WHO discredits this finding as “unscientific”.

After all, Monsanto has managed to keep their false PR front up for a couple of decades while getting scientists who question Monsanto’s science discredited, their publications removed, and even fired from long term academic positions. Nasty bunch they are.

Interesting that Monsanto challenges independent studies while not producing their own funded research studies for scrutiny. A lot of scientists are on the dole with Monsanto. But it appears Monsanto’s bad karma may be catching up with them.

Monsanto’s Discredit Bureau

Daily Koss posted an article by occupystephanie  where she attended a talk to agricultural students by Dr. William “Bill” Moar, whose mission it is to assure everyone of Monsanto products safety. Here’s what she revealed:

One student asked what Monsanto was doing to counter the “bad science” around their work. Dr. Moar, perhaps forgetting that this was a public event, then revealed that Monsanto indeed had “an entire department” (waving his arm for emphasis) dedicated to “debunking” science which disagreed with theirs. As far as I know this is the first time that a Monsanto functionary has publically admitted that they have such an entity which brings their immense political and financial weight to bear on scientists who dare to publish against them. The Discredit Bureau will not be found on their official website.

The challenge for Monsanto’s Discredit Bureau is steep in attacking the unimpeachably respected Lancet and the international scientific bodies of WHO and IARC. However, they have no choice but to attack since the stakes are so very high for them. Glyphosate is their hallmark product upon which the majority of their profits are based. Make no mistake, this is extremely bad news for Monsanto.

Monsanto holds up the sheer abundance of their own well-funded studies citing the safety of Glyphosate, done over only the past twenty years which is a short period of time in scientific inquiry particularly when dissenting research is actively suppressed.  They also hold up the findings of regulatory bodies, particularly in the United States where the revolving door between agrochemical corporations and government spins at high speed.

 

Controversial Funny Interview That Went Viral; Another Blow to Monsanto’s Image

The clip comes from a French documentary soon to be released where Dr. Patrick Moore is being interviewed about Monsanto’s Golden Rice. The interviewer throws a curve at Moore about Roundup’s safety and Moore quips that it’s so safe you could drink it without harm. What happens next is a hoot!

The controversy whirls around who Patrick Moore actually is. Monsanto says he’s not a lobbyist. Monsanto mouthpiece Forbes jumps all over that fact and introduces that factoid that he’s from Greenpeace. tumblr_inline_n51vbny9lt1qgfflu

Greenpeace claims he’s simply a PR whore for whomever will pay, and after his short stint with Greenpeace Canada years ago he went into representing various industries that Greenpeace was opposing while claiming to be an environmentalist.

From Greenpeace International’s site: “Media outlets often either state or imply that Mr. Moore still represents Greenpeace, or fail to mention that he is a paid lobbyist and not an independent source.” The Greenpeace site lists Moore’s resume’ representing polluting industries after a brief stint with Greenpeace of Canada years ago.

mark-lynas-400

He is most likely a shill who is covertly supported by Monsanto, just as former Greenpeacer Mark Lynas, an author and “environmental climate change activist”  has become an international spokesman for Monsanto and the biotech industry after doing a bit of GMO bashing prior to his conversion.

Nothing confuses those uncertain about GMOs  more than outspoken shills, paid covertly, who claim to be environmentalists now preaching how they “see the science” of GMOs for saving the world from any future food crisis without polluting the environment.

from:    http://www.realfarmacy.com/monsanto-scientist-lets-massive-secret-slip/

Monsanto Questions WHO on Cancer Link

Monsanto Asks World Health Organization to ‘Retract’ Cancer Link

Will the WHO make the change?
monsanto_lab_tech_735_350
Anthony Gucciardi
by Anthony Gucciardi
Posted on March 25, 2015

Just days after the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer released a report publicly declaring the well-known link between Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide and cancer, the GMO leviathan is already calling on the entire agency to issue a ‘retraction.’

Recently, Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide – the most widely used and best-selling herbicide in the U.S. and one of the world’s most popular weed-killers – has been labeled a probable carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. Now Monsanto is fighting that assessment.

As reported by The Lancet:

“In March, 2015, 17 experts from 11 countries met at the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC; Lyon, France) to assess the carcinogenicity of the organophosphate pesticides tetrachlorvinphos, parathion, malathion, diazinon, and glyphosate (table). These assessments will be published as volume 112 of the IARC Monographs.”

Instead of deciding to make the product safer, or even delving into the realm of the conclusion from the scientists that Roundup is ‘probably carcinogenic (cancer-causing) to humans,’ Monsanto instead stated that they ‘question’ the assessment.

“We question the quality of the assessment,”the vice president of global regulatory affairs for Monsanto, Philip Miller, stated in an interview.  “The WHO has something to explain.”

I think Monsanto has something to explain. And so do many scientific experts around the globe.

“There are a number of independent, published manuscripts that clearly indicate that glyphosate … can promote cancer and tumor growth,” said Dave Schubert, from the cellular neurobiology laboratory at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, California. “It should be banned.”

Numerous past studies have proposed what most of us have already surmised, that glyphosate – the main ingredient in Monsanto’s RoundUp – is utterly killing us. What’s more – it is causing damage in much smaller servings than the agriculture industry is dishing out in its common GMO and pesticide spraying practices.

With the already existing plethora of research pointing towards Roundup’s dangers, as well as this most recent assessment from the WHO, I think we have reason enough to find a better way to stop weeds.

Photo credit: Noah Berger, Bloomberg

Roundup Threat to Coral Reefs

Roundup ‘Weed Killer’ Threatens Coral Reefs, Persists In Seawater

Thursday, January 30th 2014 at 11:15 am

Written By:

Sayer Ji, Founder

Roundup 'Weed Killer' Threatens Coral Reefs, Persists In Seawater

The coral reefs are dying and the seas are increasingly depleted of sea life. Could Roundup ‘weed killer’ be partially to blame?

A highly concerning new study published in the journal Marine Pollution Bulletin indicates that the world’s most popular herbicide glyphosate (aka Roundup), used primarily in GM agriculture, is particularly resistant to biodegradation in coral reef collected sea water, and could therefore be a major contributor to the decline of marine coral reef systems such as the Great Barrier Reef.

The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s biggest single structure made by living organisms, and is so massive it is visible from outer space.[i] Sadly, according to a study published in 2012 by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the reef has lost more than half its coral cover since 1985,[ii] which is believed to be caused by a combination of factors, including climate change induced acidification of the ocean, outbreaks of predator species and extensive pollution. Despite the established role of agrichemicals in harming sea life, glyphosate has yet to be included in marine monitoring programs for its impacts on the reef — this despite being used at a rate of 30,000,000 lbs annually in Australia.

In the new study titled, “Glyphosate persistence in seawater,” Australian marine researchers describe “increasing concern over the global loss of corals and seagrass and this has been particularly well documented for the World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef (GBR),” pointing out that extensive agriculture activities impact water quality around reefs and seagrass beds, especially during the summer wet season from November to March, when rain-induced flooding delivers “runoff containing excess sediments, nutrients, and pesticides,” and with satellite imagery reveals their associated plumes travel up to 50 km offshore as far as the midshelf coral reefs.

In order to ascertain the potential impact of glyphosate, they quantified its biodegradation using “simulation” flask tests with native bacterial populations and coastal seawater from the Great Barrier Reef. They discovered that, “the half-life for glyphosate at 25°C in low-light was 47 days, extending to 267 days in the dark at 25°C and 315 days in the dark at 31°C, which is the longest persistence reported for this herbicide.”

When compared to previously reported half-life estimates for glyphosate biodegradation in soil and fresh waters, the sea water estimates are dramatically higher. Previous soil and water data described glyphosate’s biodegration half-life to be as rapid as 5 days for field soil and 49 days for bog and natural water.*  If the new sea water flask experiments accurately reflect real world conditions, glyphosate’s maximal 315 day half life in sea water would add up to 63 fold increased persistence to the chemical’s toxicological profile. The researchers also pointed out that flooding events which would bring glyphosate to sea would involve co-occurrence of massive quantities of sediment to which glyphosate readily binds, which would further prevent glyphosate’s biodegradation, potentially greatly enhancing its persistence and toxic effects.

Despite previous assurances by both the manufacturer (Monsanto) and regulatory bodies that glyphosate is safe to the environment and highly biodegradable, an increasingly alarming body of experimental data on glyphosate’s toxicity indicates that the chemical is extremely toxic, exhibiting potentially carcinogenic endocrine disrupting activity in the parts-per-trillion concentration range, as well as a laundry list of multiple modes of toxicity to animal life.  For direct access to the biomedical data on glyphoste’s toxicological profile, view our section on the topic: Glyphosate Toxicity.

*Note: accumulating evidence reveals that these original estimates are inaccurate and that glyphosate’s persistence in the soil, groundwater, and even air, is a far greater problem than officially acknowledged.


[i] Sarah Belfield (8 February 2002). “Great Barrier Reef: no buried treasure”

[ii] Eilperin, Juliet. “Great Barrier Reef has lost half its corals since 1985, new study says”. The Washington Post. Retrieved 1 October 2012.

from:    http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/roundup-weed-killer-threatens-coral-reefs-persists-seawater

Roundup as a Contraceptive?

Again, do your research:

Is It Time To Acknowledge Roundup Herbicide As A Contraceptive?

herbacide-contraceptive31st July 2013

By Sayer Ji

Contributing Writer for Wake Up World

How much longer will we deny the growing body of research linking Roundup to infertility before calling this chemical a contraceptive?

Following closely on the heels of the EPA’s decision to allow Roundup herbicide residues in your food at concentrations a million times higher than shown carcinogenic, a concerning new study published in the journal Free Radical Medicine & Biology implicates the herbicide, and its main ingredient glyphosate, in male infertility, at concentration ranges well within the EPA’s “safe level” for food.[1]

Performed by Brazilian researchers, the study found acute Roundup exposure at low doses (36ppm, 0.036g/L) for 30 minutes induced cell death in Sertoli cells in prepubertal rat testis.  Sertoli cells are known as “mother” or “nurse” cells within the testicles, as they are responsible for maintaining the health of sperm cells, and are required for normal male sexual development.

Roundup herbicide exposure was found to induce oxidative stress and to activate multiple-stress response pathways within affected cells, and was associated with an increase in intracellular calcium (Ca2+) concentration leading to Ca2+ overload, and cell death.

Thirty minute incubation tests with glyphosate alone (36 ppm) also increased Ca2+ uptake, and both Roundup and glyphosate were observe to downregulate reduced glutathione levels. As glutathione is an antioxidant (electron donor) found within every cell in the human body, protecting it against oxidative stress, as well as maintaining a wide range of biochemical reactions such as DNA and protein synthesis and repair, amino acid transport, prostaglandin synthesis, amino acid and enzyme activation, a dysregulation of glutathione can result in a wide range of adverse effects.

The researchers noted

Glyphosate has been described as an endocrine disruptor affecting the male reproductive system; however, the molecular basis of its toxicity remains to be clarified. We could propose that Roundup® toxicity, implicating in Ca2+ overload, cell signaling misregulation, stress response of the endoplasmic reticulum and/or depleted antioxidant defenses could contribute to Sertoli cell disruption of spermatogenesis that could impact male fertility.

This study adds to a growing body of research implicating Roundup herbicide in male infertility:

  • A 2007 study published in the journal Reproductive Toxicology found that Roundup herbicide altered the structure of the testis and epididymal region (part of the tubular spermatic duct system), as well as the serum levels of testosterone and estradiol, in male ducks, leading the researchers to conclude that Roundup “…may cause disorder in the morphophysiology of the male genital system of animals.”[2]
  • A 2010 male rat study published in the Archives of Toxicology revealed prepubertal exposure to commercial formulation of the herbicide glyphosate alters testosterone levels and testicular morphology, leading researchers to describe the herbicide as “a potent endocrine disruptor.”[3]
  • A 2011 male rat study published in the Archives of Toxicology revealed maternal exposure to glyphosate disturbed the masculinization process and promoted behavioral changes and histological and endocrine problems in reproductive parameters.[4]
  • A 2011 study published in the journal Toxicology In Vitro found a glyphosate-based herbicide induced necrosis and apoptosis in mature rat testicular cells in vitro, and testosterone decrease at lower levels.[i] In the study, Roundup and glyphosate at concentrations as low as 1 part per million produced a testosterone decrease in sperm cells by 35%.
  • A more recent 2013 study in male rats published in the journal Ecotoxicology and Reproductive Safety found glyphosate (in combination with another pesticide) provoked severe oxidative stress in male testes, resulting in inhibited testosterone production and disrupted gonadotropin levels.[5]

Given the growing body of research clearly revealing Roundup’s toxicity to the germline of animal species, the argument can be made that this chemical has contraceptive properties and therefore genocidal consequences. By directly affecting the biologically immortal cells within the testes, whose DNA contains over 3 billion years worth of information essential for there being a future for our species as a whole, Roundup should be considered an instrument of mass destruction. At the very least, the precautionary principle should be applied, and any chemical that signals the potential to disrupt or destroy our species’ germline cells, should be banned unless the manufacturer can prove beyond a reasonable doubt its safety to exposed populations.

For additional research on the wide spectrum of adverse health effects now linked to glyphosate-based herbicide formulations such as Roundup, view our research articles on GMOs, as well as view and download our free biomedical PDF on glyphosate/Roundup research.

Article Resources

from:    http://wakeup-world.com/2013/07/31/is-it-time-to-acknowledge-roundup-herbicide-as-a-contraceptive/

EPA Raises Levels of Glyphosate in Food

EPA to American People: ‘Let Them Eat Monsanto’s Roundup Ready Cake’

EPA30th July 2013

By Sayer Ji

Contributing Writer for Wake Up World

The EPA, whose mission is to “to protect human health and the environment,” has approved Monsanto’s request to allow levels of glyphosate (Roundup) contamination in your food up to a million times higher than have been found carcinogenic.

If you haven’t already heard, it’s now official. Monsanto’s request to have the EPA raise allowable levels of its herbicide glyphosate in food you may soon be eating has been approved [see Final Rule]. Public commenting is also now closed, not that it was anything but a formality to begin with.

Here is the original registration application, lest detractors claim it was not Monsanto behind this bold move to legalize what an increasingly educated public considers a form of institutionalized mass poisoning:

1. EPA Registration Numbers: 524-421, 524-475, and 524-537. Docket ID Number:EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0132. Applicant: Monsanto Company, 1300 I Street NW., Suite 450 East, Washington, DC 20005. Active ingredient: Glyphosate. Product Type:Herbicide. Proposed Uses: Add wiper applicator use over the top to carrot and sweet potato, add preharvest use to oilseed crop group 20, add the use Teff (forage and hay), and conversion of the following old crop groups to the following new crop groups: Vegetable, bulb, group 3 to vegetable, bulb, group 3-07; vegetable, fruiting, group 8 to vegetable, fruiting, group 8-10; fruit, citrus, group 10 to fruit, citrus, group 10-10; fruit, pome, group 11 to fruit, pome, group 11-10; and berry group 13 to berry and small fruit, group 13-07. Contact: Erik Kraft, (703) 308-9358, email address: kraft.erik@epa.gov. [emphasis added]

Notice above, the proposal includes “Add wiper applicator use over the top to carrot and sweet potato,” revealing that one reason why Monsanto wants tolerances on glyphosate raised is because this chemical will be applied directly not just to Roundup Ready plants but to non-GMO crops as well, virtually guaranteeing that unless you eat 100% USDA organic concentrations of grave concern will end up in your food and body.

How grave? The Food Poisoning Bulletin describes the new tolerances as follows:

Under the new regulation, forage and hay teff can contain up to 100 ppm (100,000 ppb) glyphosate; oilseed crops can contain up to 40 ppm (40,000 ppb) glyphosate, and root crops such as potatoes and beets can contain 6000 ppb glyphosate. Fruits can have concentrations from 200 ppb to 500 ppb glyphosate. These numbers are magnitudes higher than the levels some scientists believe are carcinogenic.[emphasis added]

Indeed, only last month, a new study found that glyphosate has ‘xenoestrogen‘ properties and stimulated breast cancer proliferation in the parts per trillion range – that would be six orders of magnitude lower levels than presently receiving the EPA’s Monsanto-friendly stamp of approval. So how does the EPA address the potential for carcinogenicity in section 3 of their Exposure Assessment? They state their position as follows:

EPA has concluded that glyphosate does not pose a cancer risk to humans. Therefore, a dietary exposure assessment for the purpose of assessing cancer risk is unnecessary.

According to this ruthless logic, since the EPA designates itself a higher authority than the independent scientific evidence clearly signaling glyphosate’s carcinogenicity (view the toxicological data yourself here), it requires no safety testing. Let the exposed populations eat Roundup Ready cake and fester in an epidemic of cancers, as it turns a self-blinded eye to the problem.

The EPA has just made such a mockery of its own mission statement, which is “to protect human health and the environment,” that one wonders why they have not already declared themselves a wholly owned subsidiary of Monsanto.

The obvious reason why Monsanto and its ‘EPA cheerleading division’ successfully raised the tolerances of glyphosate in your food, is because the contamination is getting so bad they had no other choice. Either limits are raised, or Monsanto breaks the law (by contaminating our food and poisoning us beyond the “acceptable level of harm” already determined by the EPA) and the EPA is shown to be completely impotent to enforce anything resembling its mission statement.

But despite Monsanto’s latest apparent success, a growing grassroots movement comprised of millions of concerned citizens is defiantly expressing their own form of “glyphosate-resistance,” armed with a growing body of published toxicological data linking the glyphosate herbicide to over 30 health problems. This movement is mirrored poetically by the “super weeds” emerging throughout the Roundup Ready monocultured farmland of the world. In both cases, the center of real power is shifting away from Monsanto back to the people who are realizing that unless they retake back control over their food, they will be coerced and poisoned into a form of biological slavery the likes of which this world has never seen before, and if it manifests fully, will likely never recover from.

Learn more at our research page on GMOs: Health Guide: GMO Research

from:     http://wakeup-world.com/2013/07/30/epa-to-american-people-let-them-eat-monsantos-roundup-ready-cake/

Your Tax Dollar – Selling Monsanto Abroad

Taxpayer Dollars Are Helping Monsanto Sell Seeds Abroad

—By

| Sat May. 18, 2013 3:00 AM PDT
Then-US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton in Kenya, 2009. USAID Photo Gallery

Nearly two decades after their mid-’90s debut in US farm fields, GMO seeds are looking less and less promising. Do the industry’s products ramp up crop yields? The Union of Concerned Scientists looked at that question in detail for a 2009 study. Short answer: marginally, if at all. Do they lead to reduced pesticide use? No; in fact, the opposite.

And why would they, when the handful of companies that dominate GMO seeds—Monsanto, DuPont, Syngenta, Dow—are also among the globe’s largest pesticide makers? Monsanto’s Roundup Ready seeds have given rise to an upsurge of herbicide-resistant superweeds and a torrent of herbicides, while insects are showing resistance to its pesticide-containing Bt crops and causing farmers to boost insecticide use. What about wonder crops that would be genetically engineered to withstand drought or require less nitrogen fertilizer? So far, they haven’t panned out—and there’s little evidence they ever will.

Yet despite all of these problems, the US State Department has been essentially acting as of de facto global-marketing arm of the ag-biotech industry, complete with figures as high-ranking as former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton mouthing industry talking points as if they were gospel, a new Food & Water Watch analysis of internal documents finds.

The FWW report is based on an analysis of diplomatic cables, written between 2005 and 2009 and released in the big Wikileaks document dump of 2010. FWW sums it up: “a concerted strategy to promote agricultural biotechnology overseas, compel countries to import biotech crops and foods that they do not want, and lobby foreign governments—especially in the developing world—to adopt policies to pave the way to cultivate biotech crops.”

The report brims with examples of the US government promoting the biotech industry abroad. Here are a few:

The State Department encouraged embassies to bring visitors—especially reporters—to the United States, which has “proven to be effective ways of dispelling concerns about biotech [crops].” The State Department organized or sponsored 28 junkets from 17 countries between 2005 and 2009. In 2008, when the US embassy was trying to prevent Poland from adopting a ban on biotech livestock feed, the State Department brought a delegation of high-level Polish government agriculture officials to meet with the USDA in Washington, tour Michigan State University and visit the Chicago Board of Trade. The USDA sponsored a trip for El Salvador’s Minister of Agriculture and Livestock to visit Pioneer Hi-Bred’s Iowa facilities and to meet with USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack that was expected to “pay rich dividends by helping [the Minister] clearly advocate policy positions in our mutual bilateral interests.”

The State Department hotly pushed GMOs in low-income African nations—in the face of popular opposition.

Another example: this 2009 cable, referenced in the FWW report, shows a State Department functionary casually requesting US taxpayer funds to  to combat a popular effort to require labeling of GMO foods in Hong Kong—and boasting about successfully having done so in the past. Why focus on the GMO policy of a quasi-independent city? Hong Kong’s  rejection of a mandatory labeling policy “could have influential spillover effects in the region, including Taiwan, mainland China and Southeast Asia,” the functionary writes, adding that her consulate had “intentionally designed [anti-labeling] programs other embassies and consulates” could use.

The report also shows how the State Department hotly pushed GMOs in low-income African nations—in the face of popular opposition. In a 2009 cable, FWW shows, the US embassy in Nigeria bragged that “U.S. government support in drafting [pro-biotech] legislation as well as sensitizing key stakeholders through a public outreach program” helped pass and industry-friendly law. Working with USAID—an independent US government agency that operates under the State Department’s authority—the State Department pushed similar efforts in Kenya and Ghana, FWW shows.

Yet, as FWW points out, in so aggressively pushing biotech solutions abroad, State is bucking against the global consensus of ag-development experts as expressed by the 2009 International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD), a three-year project, convened by the World Bank and the United Nations and completed in 2008, to assess what forms of agriculture would best meet the world’s needs in a time of rapid climate change. The IAASTD took such a skeptical view of deregulated biotech as a panacea for the globe’s food challenges that Croplife America, the industry’s main industry lobbying group, saw fit to denounce it. The US government backed up the biotech lobby on this one—just three of the 61 governments that participated refused to sign the IAASTD: the Bush II-led United States, Canada, and Australia.

So why why are our corps of diplomats behaving as if they answered to Monsanto’s shareholders with regard to ag policy? My guess is GMO seed technology, dominated by Monsanto, as well as our towering crops corn and soy crops (which are at this point almost completely from GM seeds) are two of the few areas of global trade wherein the US still generates a trade surplus. The website of the State Department’s Biotechnology and Textile Trade Policy Division puts it like this:

In 2013, the United States is forecasted to export $145 billion in agricultural products, which is $9.2 billion above fiscal 2012 exports, and have a trade surplus of $30 billion in our agricultural sector.

I guess US presidents, Democratic and Republican alike, are bent on preserving and expanding that surplus. President Obama altered much about US foreign policy when he took over for President Bush in 2009; but he doesn’t seem to have changed a thing when it comes to pushing biotech on the global stage. And the impulse is not confined to the State Department. Back in 2009, when Obama needed to appoint someone to lead agriculture negotiations at the US Trade Office, he went straight to the ag-biotech industry, tapping the vice president for science and regulatory affairs at CropLife America, Islam A. Siddiqui, who still holds that post today.

Meanwhile, the State Department operates an Office of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Textile Trade Affairs, which exists in part to “maintain open markets for U.S. products derived from modern biotechnology” and “promote acceptance of this promising technology.” The office’s biotechnology page is larded with language that reads like boilerplate from Monsanto promo material: “Agricultural biotechnology helps farmers increase yields, enabling them to produce more food per acre while reducing the need for chemicals, pesticides, water, and tilling. This provides benefits to the environment as well as to the health and livelihood of farmers.”

 

from:    http://www.motherjones.com/tom-philpott/2013/05/us-state-department-global-marketing-arm-gmo-seed-industry

Dr. Mercola on Cancer Causing Foods

New Evidence Against These Cancer-Causing Foods – And the Massive Cover-Up Effort

June 09 2012

Story at-a-glance

  • The World According to Monsanto explains how the biotech giant threatens to destroy the agricultural biodiversity that has served mankind for thousands of years
  • Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s broad-spectrum herbicide Roundup, has been deemed a major health hazard to the environment, and to animal- and human health. A French research team that has studied Roundup extensively has concluded it is toxic to human cells, and likely carcinogenic to humans
  • A recent safety review, which determined that “the available literature shows no solid evidence linking glyphosate exposure to adverse developmental or reproductive effects,” was in fact funded by Monsanto itself
Here is the link for the video:  “The World According to Monsanto”:    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Rml_k005tsU

By Dr. Mercola

The World According to Monsanto is an absolutely brilliant documentary  that should be on the required viewing list of virtually everyone on the planet.  While it’s already a few years old, the information it contains will remain current until we stop allowing genetically engineered crops to be planted altogether.

The film explains how the biotech giant Monsanto threatens to destroy the agricultural biodiversity that has served mankind for thousands of years.  I must warn you though; it may bring tears to your eyes as you learn how they have decimated so many lives and part of the environment through their morally bankrupt behavior.

A Hostile Takeover of Our Food Supply

For millennia, farmers have saved seeds from season to season. Genetically engineered seeds have completely altered the agricultural landscape, as these seeds are patented, which means farmers must purchase new seed for each planting season and are not allowed to share or save any of the seed.

Doing so equates to patent infringement, and Monsanto has become notorious for tracking down and prosecuting farmers who end up with patented crops in their fields without having paid the prerequisite fees—even when their conventional or organic crops are contaminated by unwanted genetically engineered (GE) seed spread by wind or pollinating insects from neighboring farms that grow GE crops.

To do this, Monsanto relies on a shadowy army of private investigators and agents who secretly videotape and photograph farmers, store owners, and co-ops. They infiltrate community meetings, and gather information from informants about farming activities. Some Monsanto agents pretend to be surveyors. Others confront farmers on their land and try to pressure them to sign papers giving Monsanto access to their private records. Farmers call them the “seed police” and use words such as “Gestapo” and “Mafia” to describe their tactics.

For nearly all of its history the United States Patent and Trademark Office refused to grant patents on seeds, viewing them as life-forms with too many variables to be patented.

But in 1980 the U.S. Supreme Court allowed for seed patents in a five-to-four decision, laying the groundwork for a handful of corporations to begin taking control of the world’s food supply. Since the 1980s, Monsanto has become the world leader in genetic engineering and modification of seeds; many, if not most of which are “Roundup Ready,” meaning they can withstand otherwise lethal doses of the herbicide Roundup, also created and sold by Monsanto.

Most Commonly Used Herbicide Found to be Carcinogenic

As if the health hazards of genetically altered food crops weren’t bad enough, glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, has also been deemed a major health hazard both to the environment, and to animal- and human health. It is toxic to human cells, and according to a French research team, it is also carcinogenic. The team has studied the herbicide extensively, and published at least five articles on glysphosate’s potential for wide-ranging environmental and human harmi. Their research shows that glyphosate:

  • Causes cell cycle dysregulation, which is a hallmark of tumor cells and human cancers
  • Inhibits DNA synthesis in certain parts of the cell cycle—the process by which cells reproduce that underlies the growth and development of all living organisms
  • Impedes the hatchings of sea urchins. (Sea urchins were used because they constitute an appropriate model for the identification of undesirable cellular and molecular targets of pollutants.) The delay was found to be dose dependent on the concentration of Roundup. The surfactant polyoxyethylene amine (POEA), another major component of Roundup, was also found to be highly toxic to the embryos when tested alone, and could therefore be a contributing factor

Monsanto-Funded Research Finds “No Evidence” of Harm from Roundup

It doesn’t matter that the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health recently published “research” to the contraryii, the French team says―the world needs to know the truth about who did that “safety-finding” research.  It was funded by none other than Monsanto itself! Is it any wonder they came to the conclusion that:

“[T]he available literature shows no solid evidence linking glyphosate exposure to adverse developmental or reproductive effects at environmentally realistic exposure concentrations.” 

The new Monsanto-funded safety research actually used the French team’s original research to debunk the evidence that Roundup could have human or environmental safety issues. And that didn’t sit well with the French team, which was so angered they wrote a detailed response to Monsanto’s article, accusing the researchers of minimalizing the French group’s work and publishing misleading information.

One of the Monsanto-backed team’s major flaws was their total disregard for the scientific context within which their glysphosate research was performed―namely, the DNA-damaging and carcinogenic potential of the chemical.

Furthermore:

“The second flaw was the claim that their results were “not environmentally relevant” (repeated 5 times in the article), despite the fact that the French researchers were able to demonstrate toxicity in 100% of the individual cells at short exposure time below the usage concentration (20 mM) of the herbicide in present agricultural applications. They elaborated on this point further:

“Therefore, regarding the considerable amount of glyphosate-based product sprayed worldwide, the concentration of Roundup in every single micro droplet is far above the threshold concentration that would activate the cell cycle checkpoint. (2) The effects we demonstrate were obtained by a short exposure time (minutes) of the cells to glyphosate-based products, and nothing excludes that prolonged exposure to lower doses may also have effects.

Since glyphosate is commonly found present in drinking water in many countries, low doses with long exposure by ingestion are a fact. The consequences of this permanent long term exposure remain to be further investigated but cannot just be ignored,” GreenMedInfo.com reportsiii:

Monsanto Guilty of Falsely Advertising Roundup as Safe

 for more, go to:    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/06/09/monsanto-roundup-found-to-be-carcinogenic.aspx?e_cid=20120609_DNL_art_1

Destructive Effect of Roundup on Human DNA

Study: Roundup diluted by 99.8 percent still destroys human DNA

Thursday, February 23, 2012 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer, Natural News

Roundup(NaturalNews) A new study published in the journal Archives of Toxicology proves once again that there really is no safe level of exposure to Monsanto’s Roundup (glyphosate) herbicide formula for genetically-modified organisms (GMOs). According to the new findings, Roundup, which is applied by the tens of thousands of tons a year all around the world, is still toxic to human DNA even when diluted to a mere 0.02 percent of the dilution amount at which it is currently applied to GM food crops.Numerous studies have already identified the fact that Roundup causes DNA damage, not to mention endocrine disruption and cancer. But this new study, which originates out of the Medical University of Vienna, is one of the first to illustrate Roundup’s toxicity at such drastically diluted levels, which is a direct contradiction of the agri-giant’s talking points about the supposed safety of Roundup.

“Comparisons with results of earlier studies with lymphocytes and cells from internal organs indicate that epithelial cells are more susceptible to the cytotoxic effects and DNA-damaging properties of the herbicide and its formulation,” wrote the authors in their abstract.

“Since we found genotoxic (DNA damaging) effects after short exposure to concentrations that correspond to a 450-fold dilution of spraying used in agriculture, our findings indicate that inhalation may cause DNA damage in exposed individuals.”

Interestingly, it is not so much just the glyphosate ingredient in Roundup that is extremely poisonous, as much as it is this chemical’s amplified toxicity in the presence of other additives in the formula. Polyoxyethyleneamine, for instance, a surfactant that facilitates glyphosate’s absorption into cells, has been found to significantly increase Roundup’s synergistic toxicity in humans.

Despite Monsanto’s claims to the contrary, Roundup is clearly an exceptionally toxic chemical that has no legitimate place in agriculture. According to data compiled by GreenMedInfo.com, Roundup is linked to causing Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma, imbalanced hormones in children, DNA damage, low testosterone, endocrine disruption, liver cancer, meningitis, infertility, skin cancer, kidney damage, and even uranium poisoning (http://www.greenmedinfo.com/toxic-ingredient/glyphosate).

Environmentally, Roundup is a pervasive threat to air, water, and particularly groundwater and drinking supplies, as studies have shown that it does not effectively biodegrade after being sprayed. Back in the fall, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) released data showing that air and water all across America’s “bread belt,” where much of our nation’s food is grown, is highly contaminated with glyphosate (http://www.naturalnews.com/033699_Roundup_pollution.html).

Sources for this article include:

http://www.greenmedinfo.com

from:    http://www.naturalnews.com/035050_Roundup_Monsanto_DNA.html