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March 27, 1996

'Provocative' Report Issued on Use of Pesticides

JAMA. 1996;275(12):899-900. doi:10.1001/jama.1996.03530360009004

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


THE WORLD Resources Institute has just issued a report warning that exposure to pesticides poses serious risks to the public health, specifically by depressing the immune system. These risks are not being adequately addressed, it says, and they warrant efforts to reduce exposure and expand research into the ways that pesticides affect the immune system.

Although the report, Pesticides and the Immune System: the Public Health Risks, draws on new data regarding worldwide pesticide use and the effects of exposure to it on wildlife and cites epidemiologic studies in human populations, the central focus is on the effects of pesticides on the immune system.

The World Resources Institute, in Washington, DC, is an independent think tank that examines globally significant environmental problems. Although the group has conducted studies on sustainable agriculture and addressed some pesticide issues, this is the first report on a new program it recently began on health