• Learn About Colony Collapse Disorder and How to Protect Bees
  • Learn to Manage Pests Naturally
  • Driving Near Recently Sprayed Fields Exposes People to Pesticides
  • Grow a Lush Garden Organically
  • LIving Near Fields Increases Pesticide Exposure
  • Learn to Keep Insects Out of your Crops
  • Link to SK Organic Resources
  • Learn About Pesticides in Foods
  • SNAP Display at Event
  • Weeds Can Be Managed Without Chemical Pesticides

Nervous System Effects

Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

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also see Children 2,  Organophosphates

Mother and Child Health: Learning Disorders and Prenatal Pesticide Exposure Study Results Released    (Beyond Pesticide, December 20, 2022) A meta-analysis published in Chemosphere finds prenatal pesticide exposure, or pesticide exposure during pregnancy has a positive association with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention deficit/hyperactive disorder (ADHD). Particularly, exposure to chemical classes organophosphate (OP) and pyrethroid (PYR) insecticides, in addition to the mother’s age during pregnancy (≥30 years old), increased the risk factor of ASD. ADHD risk increases among offspring whose mothers encounter organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) during gestation.

Pregnant Mothers Exposed to Insecticides More Likely to Have Children Who Develop ADHD   (Beyond Pesticides, July 11, 2019) '  The pesticides investigated by researchers were breakdown products of the organophosphate chlorpyrifos, and the synthetic pyrethroid class of insecticides. The residue of these chemicals are frequently detected on conventional, industrially farmed food products. Although chlorpyrifos is banned from residential use in the U.S., most household bug sprays such as RAID contain high amounts of synthetic pyrethroids.  Among the 948 pregnant Danish women tested, 90% had some level of chlorpyrifos metabolites (3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinol) detected in their urine, and 94% were positive for the generic pyrethroid metabolite (3-phenoxybenzoic acid). Concentrations of both chlorpyrifos and pyrethroid breakdown products in maternal urine samples above the median detection rate for the study corresponded with a 98% increase in odds of their children having ADHD scores in the 90th percentile, a strong predictor for an ADHD diagnosis.

Pyrethroid Pesticide Use Increases Rates of ADHD in Adolescent Boys in New Study (Beyond Pesticides June 4, 2015). "Boys with detectable urinary 3-PBA, a biomarker of exposure to pyrethroids, are three times as likely to have ADHD compared with those without detectable 3-PBA. Hyperactivity and impulsivity increased by 50 percent for every 10-fold increase in 3-PBA levels in boys". The use of pyrethroids has also "been linked to learning problems, and adverse behavioral and emotional development in children". 

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Urinary Metabolites of Organophosphate Pesticides. Maryse F. Bouchard et al , Pediatrics; originally published online May 17, 2010. Children with more organophosphates marker in their urine (especially dimethyl alkylphosphate (DMAP)) were more likely to be diagnosed as having ADHD. These findings support the hypothesis that organophosphate exposure, at levels common among US children, may contribute to ADHD prevalence.

Autism and Developmental Delays in Children

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see also autismchlorpyrifosorganophosphatesinsecticides and nervous system effects/ADHD, pyrethrins

New Study Links Synthetic Pyrethroids to Neurodevelopmental Problems    (Beyond Pesticides, May 5, 2023) Low level exposure to pyrethroid insecticides found in common pesticide brands like RAID and ORTHO result in neurodevelopmental damage to laboratory animals, reinforcing evidence of harm found in epidemiological studies on human exposure to these chemicals. According to research published in PNAS Nexus, mice exposed to the pyrethroid deltamethrin displayed atypical behavior similar to humans with developmental disorders. “What we are saying is that something in their brain has been altered by this exposure and it’s resulting in the same kinds of behaviors that we see in children with autism.” The study notes that the amount of pesticide provided was “well below the benchmark dose for regulatory guidance.”    SNAP Comment: There are hundreds of pyrethroid inssecticides registered in Canada, many for domestic use like Raid, including 18 deltamethrin formulations.

Mother and Child Health: Learning Disorders and Prenatal Pesticide Exposure Study Results Released    (Beyond Pesticide, December 20, 2022) A meta-analysis published in Chemosphere finds prenatal pesticide exposure, or pesticide exposure during pregnancy has a positive association with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention deficit/hyperactive disorder (ADHD). Particularly, exposure to chemical classes organophosphate (OP) and pyrethroid (PYR) insecticides, in addition to the mother’s age during pregnancy (≥30 years old), increased the risk factor of ASD. ADHD risk increases among offspring whose mothers encounter organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) during gestation.

Insecticide Chlorpyrifos Interacts with Genes to Increase Autism Risk, Research Finds   (Beyond Pesticides, July 20, 2021) 'Chlorpyrifos exposure results in the expression of genetic mutations associated with autism spectrum disorder in a laboratory model, finds research published in Environmental Health Perspectives by scientists at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health....Organoids were exposed to chlorpyrifos at four and eight weeks of development, representing a short term, high exposure scenario. “High-dose, short-term experimental exposures do not reflect the real-life situation, but they give us a starting point to identify genetic variants that might make individuals more susceptible to toxicants,” says Dr. Smirnova.'

Environmental toxicants and autism spectrum disorders: a systematic review    (D A Rossignol et al, Transl Psychiatry. 2014 Feb; 4(2): e360)  link to full study. I am only reportign the pesticide data here.  re: gestational exposure: "This model identified two peaks of developmental vulnerability, one that extended from 38 days before fertilization to 163 days following fertilization and a second postnatal peak ranging from 346 to 529 days post fertilization."  Exposure to organochlorine pesticides (specifically dicofol and endosulfan) and the organophosphates in general and the insecticide chlorpyrifos in particular were linked to development of autism spectrum disorder. '... re: childhood exposure: the evidence linking pesticide exposure in ASD does not appear as strong during childhood as during the gestational period particularly because there are fewer studies examining this factor during childhood; therefore, additional studies are warranted.'

Prenatal and infant exposure to ambient pesticides and autism spectrum disorder in children: population based case-control study  (Ondine S von Ehrenstein et al, BMJ, 20 March 2019)  11 high use pesticides were selected for examination. Risk of autism spectrum disorder was associated with prenatal exposure to glyphosate, chlorpyrifos, diazinon, malathion, avermectin, and permethrin. For autism spectrum disorder with intellectual disability, estimated odds ratios were higher (by about 30%) for prenatal exposure to glyphosate, chlorpyrifos, diazinon, permethrin, methyl bromide, and myclobutanil; exposure in the first year of life increased the odds for the disorder with comorbid intellectual disability by up to 50% for some pesticide substances. Also see Autism Linked to Wide Range of Commonly Used Pesticides (Beyond Pesticides, March 27, 2019)  for more in depth analaysis.

Aerial Mosquito Spraying Linked to Elevated Autism Rates  (Beyond Pesticides, June 15, 2017) Communities exposed to frequent aerial spraying for mosquito control experience elevated rates of autism diagnoses, according to new research. The study identifies the frequent use of synthetic pyrethroid insecticides, which are linked to neurocognitive and behavioral impacts, among other health effects...The study finds that the zip codes with frequent aerial pyrethroid exposure are 37% more likely to have higher rates of childhood developmental delays and autism spectrum disorder. The researchers acknowledge that the study establishes a correlational, not a causal, link between pyrethroid exposure and autism/developmental disorders, it adds to a growing body of research demonstrating an exposure-effect relationship between the two.

Banned Chemicals Linked to Increased Autism Risk (Beyond Pesticides, August 24, 2016) Researchers at Drexel University report that higher levels of some organochlorine compounds during pregnancy are associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and intellectual disability (ID). The organochlorine compounds under study have long been banned in the U.S., and include pesticides like DDT, underscoring how pervasive and persistent these chemicals are, and their continued impact on human health. The research is reported in the study Polychlorinated Biphenyl and Organochlorine Pesticide Concentrations in Maternal Mid-Pregnancy Serum Samples: Association with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Intellectual Disability, 

Autism risk higher near pesticide-treated fields, study says Exposure of pregnant women to organophosphates and also for the first time to pyrethroids linked to autism risk. The study also reported an increased risk of developmental delays, but not autism, in kids whose moms lived near fields where carbamates, including methomyl and Sevin, were applied. Good review of autism risks to put those in perspective. June 23, 2014 

Autism Explained: Synergistic Poisoning from Aluminum and Glyphosate - Stephanie Seneff. Video (2 hours 8 minutes) May 28, 2014

Brain Damage

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Childhoods lost: disabilities and seizures blight India's endosulfan victims (The Guardian, 15 February 2017)  Likely over 5000 children affected. Endosulfan is an acutely toxic organochlorine insecticide. SNAP Comment: Well, this is not only a Kerala. India problem. where it was aerially sprayed on the cashew crop. 14 Endosulfan formulations were historically registered in Canada and two, THIONEX EC (ENDOSULFAN) COMMERCIAL INSECTICIDE and THIONEX 50W WSP WETTABLE POWDER INSECTICIDE were still legally sold until the end of 2016. This means they may still be in use because the Pesticide Act and regulations control sales, not use. I am sure there have been health effects but, until recently, the PMRA did not collect them or consider them in pesticide registration. The system currently set up only requires manufacturers (not MDs) to disclose pesticide health effects. To report a pesticide 'incident' or check go to adverse effects reporting 

Study Reveals: Organophosphate Pesticides Cause Lasting Damage to Brain and Nervous System (Beyond Pesticides, December 10, 2012)   Low-level exposure had significant detrimental effect on working memory and information processing

Pesticides may damage brain     (October 24, 2008. sources: Globe and MailPANNA) Children are especially at risk. Pesticides that could be damaging included organophosphates (OPs), carbamatespyrethroidsethylenebisdithiocarbamates and chlorophenoxy herbicides (such as 2,4-Dmecoprop and dicamba commonly used on lawns)

 Pesticide Exposure Damages Nervous System, Brain and gastro-intestinal tract .(July 2006)

Brain Inflammation

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Inhaled Pollutants May Inflame More Than the Lungs (2010)  

(By Janet Raloff, Science News, Web edition: May 7, 2010, Print edition: May 22, 2010; Vol.177 #11 (p. 16)) 

Scientists have known that air pollution can impair airways and blood vessels. The emerging surprise is what it might do to the brain. Increasingly, studies have been highlighting inflammation-provoking nanopollutants as a potential source of nerve cell damage. PAULE's NOTE: Research into Multiple Chemical Sensitivities has long indicated that pollutants crossed the blood-brain barrier. It has also shown through SPECT and other brain scans that areas of the brain can shut down upon exposure to substances one is sensitive to, In other words, blood circulation to the brain would be shut down or reduced for hours at a time. Research in nano-particles has recently shown that they are small enough to enter cells. In the meantime, other research indicated that it's not only the size of a particle that is important but also what it is. Pesticide applications often produce very small particles in the nano-particle range. Nothing surprising for those of us who have MCS and have been following the research. I am however horrified to see these measurable effects widespread to all children exposed to polluted air. Full article:  http://www.sciencenews.org/view/feature/id/58906/title/Destination_brain. Information accessible to paid subscribers only.Try accessing a library. 


Epilepsy and Seizures

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Pesticide Exposure Increases the Risk of All Seizure Disorders, Especially Epilepsy    (Beyond Pesticides, May 11, 2023) A study published in NeuroToxicology finds occupational (work-related), chronic exposure to pesticides increases risk factors of epilepsy, a neurological disorder causing unprovoked, reoccurring seizures. Mounting evidence over the past years shows that chronic exposure to sublethal (low) levels of pesticides can cause neurotoxic effects or exacerbate preexisting chemical damage to the nervous system.

Parkinson's Disease

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see also Exposure to Pesticides linked to ALS (Beyond Pesticides, May 16, 2016), pesticides in food, Loss of Smell , Low Doseglyphosatedigestive tract

Pesticides Not Only Linked to Parkinson’s Disease Development, But Accelerating Disease Symptoms  (Beyond Pesticides, January 12, 2023) Exposure to certain pesticides among individuals diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease (PD) can increase the risk of symptom progression. According to a study published in Science of the Total Environmentnearly 20 percent of pesticides associated with the onset of PD also increase the risk of faster decline in motor and non-motor function.   Using a geographic information system (GIS) tool to gather information on ambient exposure to pesticides in residences and workplaces via California Pesticide Use Report records and land use records. The researchers examine the association between 53 pesticides with links to PD onset to determine PD symptom progression for five years and 2.7 years (respectively) for two patients.   Of the pesticides with links to PD onset, ten or ~18.8 percent (i.e., copper sulfate pentahydrate, 2-methyl-4-chlorophenoxyacetic acid MCPA dimethylamine salt, tribufos, sodium cacodylate, methamidophos, ethephon, propargite, bromoxynil octanoate, monosodium methanearsonate MSMA, and dicamba) have associations with faster symptom progression.  SNAP comment:  dicamba is used in most lawn care herbicide formulations. There are currently 83 copper sulfate, 95 MCPA4 ethephon,107 dicamba,and 0 tribufossodium cacodylate, methamidophos, propargite, bromoxynil octanoate, monosodium methanearsonate MSMA products registered in Canada although some have been historically registered. 

Common Fungicide Again Linked to Parkinson’s Disease with Molecular Disruption  (Beyond Pesticides, June 30, 2022) A study by Zhongnan University and Shandong University in China finds that the broad-spectrum fungicide maneb increases Parkinson’s disease (PD) risk and development through alterations in protein and metabolite pathways, resulting in neurotoxicity.    Even more concerning is that some personal protection equipment (PPE) may not adequately protect workers from chemical exposure during application. However, nonoccupational (residential) pesticide exposure, such as proximity to pesticide-treated areas, also presents a risk for PD development.

Neurotoxic Pesticides Disrupt Gut Function Linked to Parkinson’s Disease Development  (Beyond Pesticides, May 26, 2022) 'A study published in The International Journal of Biochemistry & Cell Biology finds environmental exposure to neurotoxic pesticides increases Parkinson’s Disease (PD) risk through gastrointestinal (GI) disruption.  ...this study suggests environmental pesticide exposure disrupts GI cells responsible for supporting the autonomic nervous system. Enteric glial cells (EGCs) are GI cells that play a critical role in the functional changes that accompany GI dysfunction, as this dysfunction is one of the earliest symptoms indicating the onset of PD.  While only 10 to 15 percent of PD incidents are genetic, PD is quickly becoming the fastest-growing brain disease due to nongenetic factors...The pesticides implicated in the study include rotenone and tebufenpyrad. Both pesticides induce cell death via mitochondrial dysfunction among neurotransmitters that release, activate, or involve dopamine, also known as dopaminergic cell damage. ' SNAP Comment: There are currently 4 rotenone and 0 tebufenpyrad pesticides registered by the PMRA.

Pesticides and Parkinson’s Disease: The Toxic Effects of Pesticides on the Brain   (Beyond Pesticides, December 16, 2021) 'A study by Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China, finds Parkinson’s Disease (PD) risk increases with elevated levels of organochlorine (OCP) and organophosphate (OP) pesticides in blood. Among patients with PD, specific organochlorine compounds have greater associations with cognitive impairments, including depression and brain function. Research finds exposure to chemical toxicants, like pesticides, can cause neurotoxic effects or exacerbate preexisting chemical damage to the nervous system.  Of the organochlorinesα-HCH and propanil concentrations have the greatest association with PD risk through increasing reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels and decreasing mitochondrial membrane function in SH-SY5Y cells. However, only propanil induced accumulation of α-synuclein, a predominant protein in the brain tissue of PD patients.'   SNAP Comment: Propanil was historically used in Canada (oneof the 7 labels says that registration ended in 2000). Hexachlorocyclohexane ( HCH) was apparently not registered. Many organochlorines persist in the environment.

Vineyard Pesticides Linked to Parkinson’s    (Beyond Pesticides, June 30, 2021) 'Vineyard farmers who spend more money on pesticide use are more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease, according to research published by French scientists in the journal Environmental Research. With Parkinson’s disease on the rise around the world, and emerging evidence growing for a Parkinson’s pandemic, it is critically important to suss out the factors at play... Parkinson’s disease incidence is 16% higher. No connections were found for other cropping systems...  Although vineyards account for only 3% of French land, 20% of pesticides purchased are for vineyards. Among the pesticides used, 80% are fungicides.'

Implications for Human Health: Chronic Inhalation of Paraquat in Low-Doses Disrupts Sense of Smell  SNAP Comment: As of 9 March 3021, the PMRA still lists 3  paraquat labels as being registered in Canada. The commercial product is Gramoxone 200 SL        (Beyond Pesticides, February 18, 2021) 'New research published in the journal Toxicological Sciences finds extended inhalation of the common herbicide paraquat causes male mice to lose some sense of smell, even at low doses. This study highlights the significance of understanding how specific chemical exposure routes can influence disease development. Olfactory (relating to the sense of smell) impairment is a precursory feature of Parkinson’s disease (PD), and studies connect paraquat poisoning to PD risk.'

Pesticide Exposure Increases the Risk of Developing Gene-Specific and Sporadic Parkinson’s Disease Incidences(Beyond Pesticides, November 5, 2020) Research at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) finds that pesticide exposure increases the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease (PD), regardless of whether disease onset is idiopathic (spontaneous) or genetic (GBA genetic risk variant). Although the exact etiology of PD remains unknown, epidemiological and toxicological research repeatedly identifies exposure to pesticides, as well as specific gene-pesticide interactions, as significant adverse risk factors that contribute to PD. Furthermore, this study, “Gene Variants May Affect PD Risk After Pesticide Exposure,” suggests that environmental triggers like occupational exposure to pesticides can prompt PD in individuals with or without the genetic precursor.

Glyphosate in Roundup Linked to Parkinson’s Disease (Beyond Pesticides, May 15, 2020) The ubiquity of glyphosate use in agriculture — which leaves residues of the toxic chemical in food — may mean that exposures to it represent a significant risk factor for the disease. Glyphosate is already implicated or proved in the development of numerous health anomalies, including cancer.  They found that exposures to glyphosate in adult mice intensified a type of neurotoxicity associated with PD. The abstract for the research paper, titled “Glyphosate exposure exacerbates the dopaminergic neurotoxicity in the mouse brain after repeated administration of MTPT,” is available online; once published, the paper will be available through Science Direct.   The researchers found that the exposures to glyphosate exacerbated the reduction of DAT (dopamine transporter) immunoreactivity in the striatum, and the reduction of TH (tyrosine hydroxylase) positive cells in the SNr after MPTP administration. Translation: the exposure to glyphosate appears both to worsen the ability of local neurons (in the SNr and striatum) to produce and transport dopamine effectively, and to intensify the neurotoxicity of other extrinsic chemicals (in this case, MPTP).

Despite Damning Scientific Evidence, EPA Dismisses Link Between Parkinson’s and Exposure to the Herbicide Paraquat  (Beyond Pesticides, October 17, 2019)    'In response to this growing body of literature, EPA conducted an epidemiological evaluation of published studies on the link between paraquat and Parkinson’s. But, in a similar manner to how the agency conducted its epidemiological evaluation of pyrethroidsEPA made broad statements dismissing scientific evidence as insufficient...  On the link between paraquat and Parkinson’s, “The data is overwhelming” said Samuel M. Goldman, MD, an epidemiologist in the San Francisco Veterans Affairs health system to the New York Times. “I’m not a farmer, I don’t need to kill weeds, but I have to believe there are less dangerous options out there.”   An EPA environmental review conducted as part of the reregistration process found evidence of significant reproductive harm to small mammals, and determined that songbirds may be exposed to levels well beyond lethal concentrations known to cause death. Threats to mammals and songbirds are particularly concerning in light of significant declines in these animal groups.'   SNAP Comment: There are still 3 paraquat products registered by Syngenta in Canada, including one commercial product, Gramoxone, re-registered in 2018 until 2013.

New Developments in the Link Between Parkinson’s and Pesticides  (Beyond Pesticides, December 20, 2018)  'Lectin, which is often found in healthy foods like raw vegetables, eggs, and dairy, combined with paraquat in the gut and triggered the formation of a misfolded protein called alpha-synuclein, a foreign agent that likely plays a role in the development of Parkinson’s. Alpha-synuclein travels from the gut to the brain via the vagus nerve.  Any herbicide implicated in the development of a disease, which is expected to double in diagnosis over the next 20 years, raises serious questions about compliance with safety standards. A large body of scientific studies strongly implicates this chemical in the development of Parkinson’s disease. Earlier this year, research published in the journal Cell Reports implicated paraquat for its ability to create senescent cells that cause inflammation in the brain.'

Parkinson's linked to gut bacteria  (Robert Ferris, CNBC, 1 December 2016) The scientists published their findings Thursday in the journal Cell. 'The germ-free mice were still overproducing alpha-synuclein, but their brain cells were not accumulating the protein. The germ-free mice showed fewer symptoms and performed better on a series of motor skills tests meant to model the kinds of tests given to human patients.' More experiments determined that what gut flora produces affects the development of Parkinson's. SNAP Comments: Several pesticides and other toxins have been linked to Parkinson's in the past. Now we also know from research that some pesticides, including glyphosate, affect the health of gut bacteria, usually suppressing good flora and promoting bad. The effects of a pesticide on gut flora are not required tests for pesticide registration. Of course use of antibiotics and what one eats is also important, but remember that people eating conventional food ingest several pesticides on a daily basis. Evidence is accumulating that gut flora is extremely important to the maintenance of health and the development of many diseases. I sincerely hope that more pesticide and toxins regularly found in our environment start being tested for their effect on gut flora. That research would provide a mechanism of action.

Pesticides and Parkinson's: Further Proof of a Link  Jan. 3, 2013. UCLA researchers have discovered a link between Parkinson's and the pesticide benomyl, whose toxicological effects still linger some 10 years after the chemical was banned by the U.S. EPA and Canada...A new pathway was discovered. The pesticide prevents an enzyme called ALDH (aldehyde dehydrogenase) from keeping a lid on DOPAL, a toxin that naturally occurs in the brain. Benomyl was widely used in the U.S. for three decades until toxicological evidence revealed it could potentially lead to liver tumors, brain malformations, reproductive effects and carcinogenesis. It was banned from the US in 2001 and at the end of 2003 in Canada.

Agent Orange Tied to Parkinson’s in Vietnam Vets (July 2009)

Occupational Use of 2,4-D, Permethrin Triple the Risk of Parkinson’s Disease   (Beyond Pesticides, Sept.16,2009)

Gene Variants and Pesticide Exposure Increase Risk of Parkinson’s Disease   (Beyond Pesticides, January 11, 2010) The findings show that study participants with two copies of gene variant have a significantly increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease when exposed to certain organophosphate pesticides used in agriculture...Individuals with the variant MM PONI1-55 genotype that are exposed to organophosphates exhibit more than twice the risk of Parkinson’s disease compared to carriers of wildtype or heterozygous genotype and no exposure. ( diazinon, chlorpyrifos)

New evidence linking pesticides, genes & Parkinson's (PanUps,  May 14, 2009) "Exposure to commonly used agricultural pesticides may increase the risk of developing Parkinson's disease, particularly among people who have certain gene types," reports Environmental Health News. Summarizing the new research, EHN notes: "The degenerative nerve disease can develop when dopamine levels in the brain are lower than normal. Without pesticide exposures, susceptible gene variants alone were not sufficient to increase risk. The increased risk to Parkinson's required both susceptible genes and pesticide exposure." The full article (PDF) is available from Environmental Health Perspectives.

Residential Exposure to Agricultural Pesticides Increases Risk to Parkinson’s Disease. (Beyond Pesticides, March 16, 2009) Posted in California, Maneb, Paraquat, Parkinson's :exposure to both pesticides within 500 meters of an individual’s home increases the risk of developing Parkinson’s by 75 percent. For individuals 60 years of age or younger at the time of diagnosis, there is a more than four-fold increase in risk of the disease when exposed to a combination of maneb and paraquat

Gene-Pesticide Interactions Linked to Parkinson’s Disease (Beyond Pesticides, March 2, 2009) Posted in Maneb, Paraquat, Parkinson's

Pesticides may be blamed for rise of Parkinson's in Manitoba: Study

Pesticides Trigger Parkinson Disease by Kagan Owens(Pesticides and You. Vol 28, no 1, Spring 2008. Beyond Pesticides, p.14) Many types of insectides are toxic to the nervous system.The better-known classes such as the oganochlorines (OCs e.g. endosulfan), organophosphates (OPs: e.g.malathionchlorpyrifos), the carbamates (e.g. carbofuran), synthetic pyrethroids (e.g. permethrinresmethrin). some herbicides such as 2.4-D are also toxic to the nervous system. This article has a list of specific pesticides linked to Parkinson Disease.

Parkinson's Disease (Beyond Pesticides

Parkinson' s p. 2

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see also filed  Industry Shenanigans p.2, paraquat

High Frequency of Household Pesticide Exposure Can Double the Risk of Parkinson’s Disease Among the General Population    (Beyond Pesticides, July 11, 2023) A study published in Parkinsonism & Related Disorders finds high exposure to household pesticides increases the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease (PD) two-fold. 

New Study Spotlights Ten Pesticides Implicated in Development of Parkinson’s     (Beyond Pesticides, May 23 2023) New research is zeroing in on the role of 10 commonly used pesticides in the development of Parkinson’s. Published in the journal Nature Communications.  From a comprehensive pesticide-wide association study, 53 of 288 pesticides screened were found to be linked to Parkinson’s. Scientists then took these 53 pesticides and conducted live-cell imaging screening.    Through this process, researchers homed in on 10 pesticides “directly toxic” to these neurons, as the study indicates.  Those pesticides included: copper sulfate, copper sulfate pentahydrate, dicofol, diquat dibromide, endosulfan, endothall, folpet, naled, propargite, and trufluralinThe most toxic of the ten was propargite, an organosulphite insecticide already associated with cancer and reproductive impacts. Diquat dibromide, naled, and folpet also recorded significant toxicity to neurons.  SNAP Comments: There are currently 83 copper sulfate, 79 copper sulfate pentahydrate, 0 dicofol, 0 diquat dibromide (although 31 diquat),0 endosulfan (16 historically),1 endothall, 9 folpet, 2 naled, 0 propargite (2 historically), and 27 trifluralin products registered in Canada.

Revealed: The secret push to bury a weedkiller’s link to Parkinson’s disease        Internal documents from chemical giant Syngenta reveal tactics to sponsor sympathetic scientific papers and mislead regulators about unfavorable research   (by Carey Gillam, The Guardian, 2 June 2023)  'Those documents showed that Syngenta was aware decades ago of evidence that exposure to paraquat could impair the central nervous system, triggering tremors and other symptoms in experimental animals similar to those suffered by people with Parkinson’s.   They also showed that Syngenta worked covertly to keep a highly regarded scientist studying causes of Parkinson’s from sitting on an advisory panel for the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the chief US regulator for paraquat and other pesticides.    The new documents have emerged at a sensitive time for Syngenta. In less than six months, the Swiss chemical giant faces a first-ever trial in litigation brought by US farmers and others who allege the company’s paraquat weedkiller causes Parkinson’s.'

also see Childrenchildren/organophosphates, fact sheets/chlorpyrifosglyphosate, organophosphatesneonicotinoids 2   Health/overview/links, nervous system effects

Alzheimer's Disease (Beyond Pesticides)

also see exposure to pesticidescancer/ links, respiratoryhuman rights

MS and ALS under auto-immune diseases

Lower IQ in children

Motor Neuron Disease  Exposure to Pesticides linked to ALS (Beyond Pesticides, May 16, 2016) 


Work-Related Pesticide Exposure Puts Farmers at Risk of Cognitive (Intellectual) Harm     (Beyond Pesticides, January 4, 2024) A review published in the Journal of Neurosciences in Rural Practice finds an association between farmers’ pesticide exposure and cognitive impairment. Specifically, farmers suffer from attention deficit, lack of information processing, non-comprehension of verbal cues, slow processing speed, memory loss, sluggishness, speech difficulties, and impaired motor function. Additionally, the risk of adverse effects from exposure increases with time spent around pesticides, like in other occupational (work-related) settings.

Association between urinary glyphosate levels and serum neurofilament light chain in a representative sample of US adults: NHANES 2013-2014    ( An-Ming Yang  et al, J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol. 2023 Sep 6).This is the first research to suggest an association between glyphosate exposure and biomarkers indicative of neurological damage in general U.S. adults. 

Prenatal Pesticide Exposure Threatens Children’s Language Development at 18 Months after Birth, Study Finds    (Beyond Pesticides, March 9, 2023) A study published in Environmental Research finds exposure to organophosphate (OP) compounds during pregnancy, or prenatal OP exposure can cause shortfalls in language development abilities at 18 months, stifling preschool-age language expression. Additionally, a timely and co-occurring study published in Environmental International confirms similar results, highlighting that chlorpyrifos (an organophosphate) impedes neurological and psychological development, including language communication and all motor skills of offspring at 12 and 18 months old.   SNAP Comment:  There are still 21 chlorpyrifos pesticides registered in Canada as of 22 March 2023. Chlorpyrifos was commonly used in yards and gardens for decades until banned for this use, and still brodcasted for mosquito control until recently by Winnipeg, and then Edmonton which only recently quit using it. Several other organophosphates are also still registered. 

filed under children/organophosphates, organophosphateschlorpyrifos and nervous system effects

Neonicotinoid Insecticides Adversely Affect Nervous System Health, According to Study   (Beyond Pesticides, January 19, 2023) Chinese study. 'Research published in Environmental Health Perspectives finds the presence of nine various neonicotinoids (neonics) and six neonic metabolites within human cerebrospinal fluid (CSF).   Researchers collected CSF samples from patients experiencing similar symptoms with a different disease/clinical diagnosis (i.e., “mostly viral encephalitis, encephalitis other than viral encephalitis, leukemia, cerebral hemorrhage, cerebral laceration, urinary tract infection, respiratory failure, pulmonary tuberculosis, and posterior circulation ischemia”).  Ninety-nine percent of the 314 CSF samples contain at least one neonic. Of the 314 CSF samples, nine percent (28) have a single neonic compound, 84 percent (265) have between 2 and 6, and six percent (19) have between 7 and 10 neonic compounds. Nine of these neonics in CSF samples are nitenpyram (NIT), thiamethoxam, imidacloprid, acetamiprid (ACE), thiacloprid, clothianidin, flonicamid, imidaclothiz, and sulfoxaflor. Additionally, six neonic metabolites are present in CSF: N-desmethyl-thiamethoxam, olefin-imidacloprid, 5-hydroxy-imidacloprid, N-desmethyl-acetamiprid (N-dm-ACE), thiacloprid-amide, and 6-chloronicotinic acid.

Pesticides plague Californians of color, new study shows (Shannon Kelleher, The New Lede, 15 Sept. 2022)   'Ventura County (California) is known for its year-round production of roughly $2 billion worth of fruits and vegetables that feed people throughout the US and more than 70 other countries. Strawberries are the top crop, but workers also produce peppers, tomatoes, blueberries, avocados, and more.   The study found that 17.1 million pounds of pesticides, or an average of 5.7 million pounds per year, were sprayed in Ventura County from 2016 to 2018. The pesticides used included more than 60 types known to be carcinogenic and 74 types linked to endocrine disruption. Another 85 pesticides used in the county were linked to developmental and reproductive toxicity.     Notably, the study found that township sections where people of color were the majority had not just the most pesticide use, but also the most toxic pesticide use. More than half of the population in these areas was Latino or Hispanic. In contrast, areas that were relatively free of pesticides were overwhelmingly white communities.  “The strongest association we have seen between pesticide exposure during pregnancy and effects on children’s brains are with cognition, so like IQ and attention, ADHD,” said Gunier. “We have also looked at respiratory health, like asthma and lung function. For that, we actually see stronger associations with exposure during their childhood.”   As Harari began researching risk factors for advanced thyroid cancer at UCLA, she noticed that a lot of her referrals were coming from Bakersfield in Kern County– one of the top agricultural counties in the U.S. In a recent case-control study using thyroid cancer cases from the California Cancer Registry, Harari and colleagues found that 10 of the 29 pesticides they analyzed were associated with thyroid cancer.'

Glyphosate Weed Killer Crosses Blood-Brain Barrier, Linked to Alzheimer’s and Other Neurodegenerative Diseases   (Beyond Pesticides, August 4, 2022) An Arizona State University (ASU) study. 'The results confirm that glyphosate infiltrates brain tissue, elevating TNFα levels and soluble Aβ, causing cell death among exposed cortical neurons. The novel one-step glyphosate extraction method provides the first evidence of dose-dependent glyphosate accumulation in the brain. Moreover, the extraction method finds a small amount of AMPA in brain tissue, indicating glyphosate is also breaking down in the body. Therefore, glyphosate exposure has implications for neurodegenerative diseases like AD, resulting from elevated protein levels and expression.'

MicrocephalyCommon Mosquito Pesticide Exacerbates Health Issues Associated with Zika Virus   (Beyond Pesticides, September 28, 2021) 'A widely used mosquito pesticide may exacerbate the effect of the Zika virus on fetal brain development, according to research published by an international team of scientists in the journal Environmental PollutionPyriproxyfen, an insect growth regulator often used as a mosquito larvicide, is registered for use in hundreds of commonly used pesticide products.' Through tadpole studies and  studies of stem cells created from mouse brains, researchers determined that not only was pyriproxyfen toxic to brain cells, but that it also modified cells to increase production of Musaschi-1 protein, which the Zika virus employs in order to transmit the virus to other cells in an individual’s body.   SNAP Comment: As of 18 October 2021, a PMRA label search indicates that pyriproxyfen is not nor has it been registered in Canada.

Pesticide Exposure Triggers Headaches and Other Cognitive Issues Among Youth in Farms Areas (Beyond Pesticides, November 25, 2020) The study demonstrates that there is a relationship between pesticide exposure from various farm-related and leisure activities and headaches and neurocognitive functioning (i.e., autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), lower intelligence (IQ), and harmful social behavior and behavioral regulation) in children and adolescents. The results demonstrate a link between headache severity and pesticide exposure-related farm activities as all activities increase the severity score. Neurocognitive results show an overall negative association with pesticide exposure-related activities, lowering multitasking skills, with direct fieldwork contributing to lower spatial memory, and impaired associated learning. Individuals who eat crops grown with chemical-intensive practices have slower motor-visual functioning and processing.    Considering the etiology (cause) of many brain and neurological disorders are unknown, research like this is significant for understanding how pesticide exposure promotes disease development, especially among vulnerable populations.

Environmental Chemicals Are Stealing IQ Points from American Children and Costing Trillions to the U.S. Economy  (Beyond Pesticides, January 16, 2020)    ' “Although people argue against costly regulations, unrestricted use of these chemicals is far more expensive in the long run, with American children bearing the largest burden,” says senior study author Leonardo Trasande, MD, MPP in a press release....Despite modest declines in organophosphate pesticide use over the study period, the impacts of organophosate exposure appear roughly on par with lead exposure. Pesticides were estimated to result in over 26 million lost IQ points and over 110,000 cases of intellectual disability, totaling roughly $735 billion in economic costs.'

Brain Function Damage from Exposure to Organophosphate Pesticides, including Chlorpyrifos, Documented with Imaging  (Beyond Pesticides, August 30, 2019)   'The subject adolescents — estimated to have relatively high levels of prenatal exposure to organophosphates — showed aberrant brain activity in executive function, attention, social cognition, and language comprehension, compared to their peers.'   'Associate adjunct professor of epidemiology at UC Berkeley and lead author of the new study, Sharon Sagiv, PhD, said, “These results are compelling, because they support what we have seen with our neuropsychological testing, which is that organophosphates impact the brain.”'

Brain and Behavioral Effects of Early Exposures to Neurotoxicants  (University of California Television (UCTV), Aug 11, 2015)  There is also a significant link to meaningful tremors and learning deficits. This presentation addresses the impact of prenatal exposure to a common neurotoxicant on brain structure and neuropsychological function in an inner-city cohort of minority children. The toxic chemical, an organophosphate insecticide (chlorpyrifos), has been banned for indoor residential use in the U.S. since 2001, but continues to have widespread application for agricultural purposes. Possible moncholinergic mechanisms involve disruption of neural cell development and neurotransmitter systems, including the formation and activity of synapses in different brain regions. This presentation examines the evidence for long-term effects of prenatal chlorpyrifos exposure on neuropsychological profiles and brain morphology as measured by MRI. Series: "MIND Institute Lecture Series on Neurodevelopmental Disorders" Health and Medicine Professional Medical Education Show ID: 29838

Mothers with High Exposure to DDT More Likely to Have Children with Autism, Study Finds  (Beyond Pesticides, August 22, 2018)   Women tested for DDE and PCBs. "Though this study links autism to long-banned DDT, it raises significant concerns about legacy contamination from this chemical, which remains ubiquitous in the environment and in human bodies."

Mothers with High Exposure to DDT More Likely to Have Children with Autism, Study Finds  (Beyond Pesticides, August 22, 2018) 

women tested for DDE and PCBs "Though this study links autism to long-banned DDT, it raises significant concerns about legacy contamination from this chemical, which remains ubiquitous in the environment and in human bodies."

How the pesticide believed to be killing the bees could be affecting humans (By Nicole Mortillaro Science and Weather Reporter  Global News April 20, 2016) filed under health /links

Neonicotinoid pesticides blamed for bee deaths could affect humans, EU agency says (Alex Ballingall News, Dec 20 2013)  An agency-sponsored study suggested two neonicotinoids, acetamiprid and imidacloprid, might affect a developing human nervous system — that of a fetus or young child — in a way similar to nicotine exposure. The study identifies potential affects on memory, learning ability and motor use, leading the agency to propose lowering the levels of human exposure to the chemicals considered acceptable. 

New Research Confirms Neurotoxicity of Pesticide Synergist PBO (Beyond Pesticides, June 15, 2012) As with many so-called “inert” ingredients, pesticide products often contain five to ten times more PBO than the active ingredient in the formulation. PBO is listed among the top 10 chemicals detected in indoor dust, often a significant route of exposure to children...“We were concerned when our study confirmed that PBO disrupted neurological development pathways – especially given the widespread use of this chemical in American homes,” said Wei Chen, PhD,...

link to SNAP's page on pyrethrins and pyrethroids

Gulf war research indicated that mixing a drug to protect against nerve toxin, DEET for mosquito repellent and pyrethorids sprayed for sand flies in the tents compounded the toxicity many times and caused severe effects  at levels way below what each caused on its own.

Neurotoxicity Resulting from Coexposure to Pyridostigmine Bromide, DEET, and Permethrin: Implications of Gulf War Chemical Exposures. (Mohamed B. Abou-Donia. Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health. Volume 48, Issue 1, 1996. pages 35-56)

Acute Oral Toxicity Study of Pyridostigmine Bromide, Permethrin, and DEET in the Laboratory Rat.(Wilfred C. McCain Robyn Lee Mark et al.Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health. Volume 50, Issue 2, 1997. pp pages 113-124)

Combined Exposure to Deet (N,N-Diethyl-m-Toluamide) and Permethrin: Pharmacokinetics and Toxicological Effects. (Aqel W. Abu-Qarea & Mohamed B. Abou-Donia.Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part B: Critical Reviews.Volume 6, Issue 1, 2003. pages 41-53).