Chemical pollution ‘responsible for silent pandemic of brain damage’

By | November 13, 2006

Chemical pollution responsible for silent pandemic of brain damage

MILLIONS of children worldwide may have suffered brain damage as a direct result of industrial pollution, scientists said yesterday.

An explosive report from researchers in the United States and Denmark talks of a “silent pandemic” of neurodevelopmental disorders caused by toxic chemicals spilling into the environment.

They include conditions such as autism, attention deficit disorder, mental retardation and cerebral palsy.

The scientists identified 202 industrial chemicals with the potential to damage the human brain, and said they were likely to be the “tip of a very large iceberg”. More than 1,000 chemicals are known to be neurotoxic in animals, and are likely to be harmful to humans.

The researchers made an urgent call to tighten worldwide controls, and for a “precautionary approach” to testing. – more

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