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May 24/31, 2000

Arsenic Contamination of Museum Artifacts Repatriated to a Native American Tribe

Author Affiliations

Phil B.FontanarosaMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorStephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Contributing EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 2000;283(20):2658-2659. doi:10.1001/jama.283.20.2653

To the Editor: The 1990 Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA)1 provides for the inventory and return of human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, and objects of cultural patrimony to Native Americans, Alaskan Natives, and Native Hawaiians. Many objects, such as full head masks, have already been returned. However, concerns have arisen about risk of exposure to museum-applied pesticides (eg, arsenic, mercury, organophosphates, carbamates, organochlorines, and volatiles).