Journal of Organic Systems, 9(2), 2014 ORIGINAL PAPER
Genetically engineered crops, glyphosate and the
deterioration of health in the United States of America
Nancy L. Swanson1, Andre Leu2*, Jon Abrahamson3 and Bradley Wallet4
1 Abacus Enterprises, Lummi Island, WA, USA
2 International Federation of Organic Agricultural Movements, Bonn, Germany
3 Abacus Enterprises, Lummi Island, WA, USA
4 Crustal Imaging Facility, Conoco Phillips School of Geology and Geophysics, University of
Oklahoma, USA
* Corresponding author: andreleu.al@gmail.com
Abstract

A huge increase in the incidence and prevalence of chronic diseases has been reported in the United
States (US) over the last 20 years. Similar increases have been seen globally. The herbicide
glyphosate was introduced in 1974 and its use is accelerating with the advent of herbicide-tolerant
genetically engineered (GE) crops. Evidence is mounting that glyphosate interferes with many
metabolic processes in plants and animals and glyphosate residues have been detected in both.
Glyphosate disrupts the endocrine system and the balance of gut bacteria, it damages DNA and is a
driver of mutations that lead to cancer.

In the present study, US government databases were searched for GE crop data, glyphosate
application data and disease epidemiological data. Correlation analyses were then performed on a
total of 22 diseases in these time-series data sets. The Pearson correlation coefficients are highly
significant (< 10-5) between glyphosate applications and hypertension (R = 0.923), stroke (R = 0.925),
diabetes prevalence (R = 0.971), diabetes incidence (R = 0.935), obesity (R = 0.962), lipoprotein
metabolism disorder (R = 0.973), Alzheimer’s (R = 0.917), senile dementia (R = 0.994), Parkinson's (R
= 0.875), multiple sclerosis (R = 0.828), autism (R = 0.989), inflammatory bowel disease (R = 0.938),
intestinal infections (R = 0.974), end stage renal disease (R = 0.975), acute kidney failure (R = 0.978),
cancers of the thyroid (R = 0.988), liver (R = 0.960), bladder (R = 0.981), pancreas (R = 0.918), kidney
(R = 0.973) and myeloid leukaemia (R = 0.878).

The Pearson correlation coefficients are highly significant (< 10-4) between the percentage of GE corn
and soy planted in the US and hypertension (R = 0.961), stroke (R = 0.983), diabetes prevalence (R =
0.983), diabetes incidence (R = 0.955), obesity (R = 0.962), lipoprotein metabolism disorder (R =
0.955), Alzheimer’s (R = 0.937), Parkinson's (R = 0.952), multiple sclerosis (R = 0.876), hepatitis C (R
= 0.946), end stage renal disease (R = 0.958), acute kidney failure (R = 0.967), cancers of the thyroid
(R = 0.938), liver (R = 0.911), bladder (R = 0.945), pancreas (R = 0.841), kidney (R = 0.940) and
myeloid leukaemia (R = 0.889).
The significance and strength of the correlations show that the effects
of glyphosate and GE crops on human health should be further investigated.
http://www.organic-systems.org/journal/92/JOS_Volume-9_Number-2_Nov_2014-Swanson-et-al.pdf
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