The most commonly used herbicide globally, Roundup, contains glyphosate, a chemical which has been linked to cancer, especially non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Japan’s Chiba University now finds exposure to glyphosate can also contribute to development of Parkinson’s disease (PD), a progressive and neurodegenerative brain disease impacting motor function that affects 1 million Americans.
The study found that glyphosate exacerbates neurotoxicity by worsening the ability of local neurons to produce and transport dopamine effectively—the neurotransmitter primarily responsible for mediating motor function. Chronic pesticide exposure—through farming, occupational use, well water, or residential applications—is linked to elevated levels of PD. The herbicide paraquat and pesticide rotenone are also linked.
Last September, 16 organizations called on the EPA to remove glyphosate completely and replace it with non-toxic, organic approaches. Eating organic food, avoiding glyphosate use in gardens and on lawns, watching water quality, and encouraging garden centers, golf courses, and school districts to use safer alternatives are actions people can take to lessen the threat.
Source: Beyond Pesticides, Science Direct
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