Levels of the herbicide Roundup in human urine have increased dramatically among California residents in the past two decades, a new study reports.
Roundup (glyphosate) is used to protect genetically modified corn and soy crops from weeds and also is used on wheat and oats, said the study’s lead author, Paul Mills. He is a professor of family medicine and public health at the University of California, San Diego.
Urine collected from 100 Californians between 1993 and 2016 show that glyphosate levels have gone up with the advent of genetically modified crops, Mills said.
In the early samples, “there were very low levels — they were only detectable in 12 out of 100 people,” Mills said. “Then over the next 22 years, we found about a 1,000 percent increase in the levels found in the 100 people, on average.”
However, the study does not show that exposure to glyphosate directly caused any health problems in these people, noted Dr. Nima Majlesi, director of medical toxicology at Staten Island University Hospital in New York City.
“I think these studies have a huge flaw in that they really haven’t shown any adverse outcomes in human beings,” Majlesi said. “All you’re seeing is numbers.”
[Editor’s note: Read the full study (behind paywall)]
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