Fact check: Conflicting studies on chlorpyrifos insecticide’s human health impact

This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

When the Environmental Protection Agency decided to not ban chlorpyrifos, an insecticide widely used in agriculture, both the EPA and its critics claimed “sound” or “solid” science supported their positions. Research does suggest chlorpyrifos impacts human health, but that research has some limitations.

Some studies do suggest that chlorpyrifos exposure can lead to developmental issues in children, for example, but they’re correlational studies, meaning they don’t provide causal links. However, research in rodents has found causal links between chlorpyrifos and developmental issues.

SciCHECKsquare eOther studies in human populations have failed to find correlations between chlorpyrifos and development issues in children, but that research may be suffering from what scientists call “confounding variables,” or unrelated factors that may be affecting the study’s results.

Based on the available research, there is evidence to suggest that chlorpyrifos negatively impacts the development of children. But that research does have some limitations, and whether it is sufficient evidence is debatable.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: The Facts on Chlorpyrifos

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