Really good interview from 2013 - Smith interviewing Seneff on Glyphosate

Autism, Alzheimer’s, Tryptophan/Serotonin (Aggression, school shootings), Parkinson’s, Monsanto’s Roundup, additional ingredients that help get the Glyphosate into the plants cells and human cells, their short term studies, Seralini’s studies, MS/Leaky Gut (myelin sheath), Bowel Inflammation (IBS)/Anorexia, Heart Disease and Diabetes (cholesterol sulphate), Obesity

At 28:00:

“One thing that I find very fascinating is that serotonin, low serotonin is very definitely correlated with violent behavior and I think Glyphosate may be a contributor to all the epidemic we have in school shootings...people have such low serotonin that they become irrationally violent...”

It was "supposed" to be harmless to humans and animals—the perfect weed killer. Now a groundbreaking article just published in the journal Entropy points to Monsanto's Roundup herbicide, and more specifically its active ingredient glyphosate, as devastating—possibly "the most important factor in the development of multiple chronic diseases and conditions that have become prevalent in Westernized societies.”

That's right. The herbicide sprayed on most of the world's genetically engineered crops—and which gets soaked into the food portion—is now linked to "autism ... gastrointestinal issues such as inflammatory bowel disease, chronic diarrhea, colitis and Crohn's disease, obesity, cardiovascular disease, depression, cancer, cachexia, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, and ALS, among others."

Enjoy this videotaped guided tour of Jeffrey Smith interviewing co-author Stephanie Seneff, PhD, a Senior Research Scientist at MIT.

Monsanto's Glyphosate Found in California Wines, Even Wines Made With Organic Grapes

Remember, dandelions are the bee’s first food. Let them grow.

Seneff: “Finally people are starting to notice the collapse of the insects. I am one of those who are old enough to remember the messy windshields, and I have been alarmed for a long time at the absence of bugs in the local environment where I live. I suspect glyphosate is a major player in this collapse.”

People Finally Noticing Insect Collapse

Actually, we do. Not only do insects form the base of the food chain for larger, cuter wildlife, they also pollinate plants that feed us, help digest waste matter and turn it back into soil, and perform numerous other ecosystem services. Plunging populations of insect predators mean that isolated outbreaks of destructive insects will be harder to control. An insect collapse is also the canary in our coal mine – an indicator that sooner or later, we’re in for trouble of our own. Further, and this may be the hardest to accept, not everything in nature is about us.

So what can we do about this? One action people can take on their own is to create more insect habitat in their own backyards. The National Wildlife Federation developed a program to help people support insects and wildlife by planting more nectar-bearing flowers, creating shelter, and providing water.

Chicago Tribune Exposé: EPA Cooked the Books to OK Dow's Dangerous Weed Killer - 2015

That's right: Even though Dow's own study found that higher doses of 2,4-D are hazardous, EPA scientists decided it's OK to expose Americans to 41 times more of the poison than the company's research said is safe.

Major journal sounds alarm over global mass poisoning

Almost every human being is now contaminated in a worldwide flood of industrial chemicals and pollutants – most of which have never been tested for safety – a leading scientific journal has warned.

Regulation and legal protection for today’s citizens from chemical poisons can no longer assure our health and safety, according to a hard-hitting report in the journal PLOS Biology, titled “Challenges in Environmental Health: Closing the Gap between Evidence and Regulations”.

The report describes a chemical oversight system corrupted from its outset in the 1970s when 60,000 chemicals were registered for use in the US, mostly without being safety tested. Many of these chemicals were subsequently adopted as ‘safe’ around the world.

Over the years, public health protection has stagnated – despite mounting scientific evidence that many chemicals are damaging whole classes of organisms, say report editors Liza Gross and Linda Birnbaum.

“We still have safety data on just a fraction of the 85,000-plus chemicals now approved for use in commerce. We know from field, wildlife, and epidemiology studies that exposures to environmental chemicals are ubiquitous,” the researchers say. (European estimates put the number of proposed new chemicals worldwide at over 145,000.)

“Hazardous chemicals enter the environment from the factories where they're made and added to a dizzying array of consumer products - including mattresses, computers, cookware, and plastic baby cups to name a few – and from landfills overflowing with our cast-offs,” Gross and Birnbaum say.

“They drift into homes from nearby agricultural fields and taint our drinking water and food. Today, hundreds of industrial chemicals contaminate the blood and urine of nearly every person tested, in the US and beyond.

“Evidence has emerged that chemicals in widespread use can cause cancer and other chronic diseases, damage reproductive systems, and harm developing brains at low levels of exposure once believed to be harmless. Such exposures pose unique risks to children at critical windows of development - risks that existing regulations fail to consider.”

The report underlines a recent finding by The Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health which concluded nine million deaths (or 16% of the total) every year worldwide are due to diseases caused by the human chemical environment – 15 times the number killed in wars.

The PLOS report explores eight dimensions of the emerging chemical crisis. Key points include:

“Countless chemicals were entered into commercial use without toxicological information. Few chemicals of the many identified as potential public health threats were regulated or banned,” Sheldon Krimsky of Tufts University states in a strong critique of policy failures.

Contrary to what some chemists claim, many substances become more poisonous at low doses than at high ones. For some toxins there is no safe dose level and “we will need to achieve near-zero exposures to protect public health,” says Bruce Lanphear of Canada’s Simon Fraser University.

Children face the highest risks from chemical poisons, while scientists are still working are working to determine the full range of chemicals we carry in our bodies and their effects on our health, say Joseph Braun and Kimberley Grey.
Several articles document the failure of government to keep hazardous chemicals from polluting our food, air, and drinking water. Maricel Maffini and colleagues describe the failure of regulators to account for health risks associated with the thousands of chemicals introduced into the food system by the US Congress and other governments since 1958.

The PLOS report concludes there is a need for more research and a much tougher approach to regulation – but these will not be enough. Citizens themselves will have to force governments to take stronger action to protect human health, it finds.

National ban on glyphosate in Austria within reach

The Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) and the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ), the two parties that are about to form the new government of Austria, have announced that they want a national ban on glyphosate.

The future Austrian Chancellor, Sebastian Kurz, has said that he wants to phase out glyphosate at a national level. Kurz says Austria now "has to clarify the legal requirements, and wants to orient itself to France and Italy", whose leaders have also both said they want to ban it.

The Golden Ticket: Farmers Go Organic In Quest To Make Money Again

"Some of (this corn) is sold at $8.80, some of it’s sold at $9," Thalken says. That’s almost triple the current price for conventional corn.

Playing God: Are we prepared to use gene drive technology?

For Patrick Tranel, a weed scientist at the University of Illinois, the technical reality of gene drive is forcing policy makers to answer a profound question: is it ethical to extinguish a species, even a pest that spreads disease?

“There are very few organisms in the world that we have enough understanding that we would want to (drive it) to extinction,” he said.

“I don’t want to play God, at that level, to decide that this species has absolutely no value to Earth.”

There’s also the secondary impact of that extinction. What would the loss of an insect species mean to bats and birds that feed on that insect?

How does the loss of that insect, or a reduced population, affect the entire ecosystem?

GM genes are still getting into native Mexican maize

GM genes are still getting into native Mexican maize varieties, a new study has found. This is in spite of the fact that the cultivation of GM maize is banned in Mexico, which is the genetic centre of origin for the crop. The study also identifies the crucial factors that decide whether or not GMO contamination occurs: the social organization and seed management systems of local communities.

GM Watch

Hold the plum pudding: US food sampling shows troubling pesticide residues - Known toxics are ending up on our plates

Sometimes the truth about our food is not very appetizing.

As many gather this holiday season for shared family meals, it is likely that they'll be serving up small doses of pesticides with each plate passed, including a prevalent type shown to be harmful to children and reproductive health.

New data released recently by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) shows a rise in the occurrence of pesticide residues detected in thousands of samples of commonly consumed foods. Documents obtained from the agency through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests also show the government is bracing for more, with the use of at least one controversial weed killing chemical – the herbicide known as 2,4-D - expected to triple in the next year.

And buried deep within the FDA's latest annual pesticide residue report is data showing that a controversial insecticide called chlorpyrifos, which is marketed by Dow Chemical and is banned from household use due to known dangers, was the fourth-most prevalent pesticide found in foods out of 207 pesticides detected.

The Environmental Protection Agency sets legal limits, referred to as "maximum residue limits" (MRLs) for pesticide residues on foods. The FDA and USDA routinely assure consumers that if residues are below the established MRLs, they are both legal and safe. But many scientists and medical professionals disagree, saying regulatory methods are outdated and too dependent on input from the chemical industry players selling the pesticides.

Herbicides linked to antibiotic resistance

New Zealand researchers have found that the active ingredients in commonly-used weed killers like Round-up and Kamba can cause bacteria to become less susceptible to antibiotics. The study builds upon research published in 2015 that found three common herbicides caused E.coli and Salmonella to become less sensitive to antibiotics. The new research investigated which ingredients were responsible and found it was the active ingredients, not the extra additives, to blame. The researchers suggest regulators should consider these impacts when considering whether such products are safe to use.

Updated Ag Health Study of Glyphosate and Cancer by Jennifer Sass, Senior Scientist

In any event, epidemiological evidence was never the centerpiece of IARC’s decision regarding glyphosate. Because IARC determined that the epidemiologic evidence was “limited” and largely uninformative, IARC’s conclusion that glyphosate “probably” causes cancer (Group 2A) was based on “sufficient evidence” in experimental animals, and supported by evidence that glyphosate triggered known mechanisms for cancer in laboratory studies and exposed people (see IARC Monograph, p. 78). In fact, the evidence from experimental animals is even stronger now, thanks to recent revelations of additional tumors analyzed by Dr. Christopher Portier and presented publicly in his recent testimony to the European Parliament.

IARC’s assessments are rigorous, lengthy, and systematic. They involve not only looking at the conclusions of a study, but also the study design, methods, and statistical analysis. Each study is reviewed by multiple experts in the appropriate scientific discipline, including epidemiologists, toxicologists, geneticists, and statisticians. Almost 100 scientists from 25 countries have written to support the IARC evaluation of glyphosate. Importantly, those scientists, like IARC, are funded by the public purse—they work for the public interest. They are our scientists, and IARC is our public health institute.

IARC is doing its job of adhering to scientific excellence and public health protection. People who care about protecting public health and the environment should watch out for well-funded attempts by Monsanto to undermine IARC and its findings, and treat with caution reports of new studies that allegedly discredit its findings or purport to render them irrelevant. Chances are those claims are based on a misunderstanding or misrepresentation of the science.

Some scientists who had contributed to the Monographs Volume 112 Working Group informed IARC they had been approached by interested parties (including lawyers representing Monsanto; see footnote for further details) and asked to release private emails as well as draft scientific documents related to their work on the Monographs. In light of the interests at stake, including ongoing lawsuits in the USA against Monsanto, the scientists felt uncomfortable releasing these materials, and some felt that they were being intimidated. Knowing that the relevant Monograph had already been published and that the Monographs Preamble indicates the need for experts to be free of pressure of all kinds to perform their work in an impartial way, they asked IARC for advice as to whether they should release preliminary and deliberative drafts and related communications.

Playground contamination study in South-Tyrol

Moms Across the World: “Children who live near orchards and frequently sprayed fields are vulnerable to pesticides that can travel over distances (are volatile). Sprays don't just fall down to the ground.”

'The relationship between contamination found and distance to the nearest orchard or vineyard shows that the phenomenon of drift not only occurs within the range of a few metres: All contaminated playgrounds were located more than 15 metres from the nearest cultivated land, with 10 of them more than 50 m away, and 4 of these in turn more than 100 m away.'

Violating the Sacred: GMO Chestnuts for the Holidays?

Is our meddling risking further damage to already fragile ecosystems that have since compensated for the loss of the American chestnut tree?

...Young American chestnuts remain scattered throughout the forests of the east, though few make it to maturity. These are the ones that researchers from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY/ESF) will be cross pollinating (contaminating) with their genetically engineered (GE) version.

Deregulation of the GE American Chestnut

William Powell, lead American chestnut scientist at SUNY/ESF recently announced his team is almost ready to apply for Federal deregulation to allow them to distribute their GE trees, free of charge, in hopes they will be planted in great numbers. Some of these GE trees, modified with a wheat gene, will be planted near surviving disease resistant non-GMO American chestnut trees. The goal is for the GE tree to cross pollinate with the others and create the next generations of disease-resistant offspring.

Powell and his team hope that the government agencies charged with reviewing their research results will modify the process to make it much easier to obtain permission to release novel GMOs like their GE chestnut. And with government agencies now managed by anti-regulation leadership coming directly from industry boardrooms and research facilities, chances are good that requirements for scientific review or public input will greatly diminish- at our peril.

New FSSAI labelling norms to make it mandatory to label GMO products - India

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), the country’s apex food regulator, has decided to make it mandatory for food business operators (FBOs) to declare whether their food products contain any ingredient that is a genetically-modified organism (GMO).

These Are Not Your Father’s GMOs

A new wave of gene-edited crops are dodging regulators, and they’re about to reach stores.

Opponents say they’re ready to fight for rules, regulations, and labels. “Our position has never changed. This is just a form of genetic engineering, so the same things should happen—there should be required safety assessments,” says Michael Hansen, a staff scientist at the Consumers Union, a lobby group attached to Consumer Reports magazine. “I can’t see this being resolved anytime soon.”

Bt Crops and their Ecosystems

All of the recent reports on Bt reflect the fact that like all GMOs, these crops are experimental and we are still learning about their impacts. This is one of the many reasons the Non-GMO Project exists. We believe that all shoppers deserve to know what is in their food so that they can make informed purchasing decisions. When you purchase Non-GMO Project Verified products, you are telling the retailers and brands you support that GMO transparency is important to you. The Non-GMO Project butterfly also tells you that the product you are purchasing has met North America’s most rigorous standard for GMO avoidance. Remember to Look for the Butterfly when you shop!!

Effect of canola oil consumption on memory, synapse and neuropathology in the triple transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease - December 2017

Abstract: In recent years consumption of canola oil has increased due to lower cost compared with olive oil and the perception that it shares its health benefits. However, no data are available on the effect of canola oil intake on Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathogenesis. Herein, we investigated the effect of chronic daily consumption of canola oil on the phenotype of a mouse model of AD that develops both plaques and tangles (3xTg). To this end mice received either regular chow or a chow diet supplemented with canola oil for 6 months. At this time point we found that chronic exposure to the canola-rich diet resulted in a significant increase in body weight and impairments in their working memory together with decrease levels of post-synaptic density protein-95, a marker of synaptic integrity, and an increase in the ratio of insoluble Aβ 42/40. No significant changes were observed in tau phosphorylation and neuroinflammation. Taken together, our findings do not support a beneficial effect of chronic canola oil consumption on two important aspects of AD pathophysiology which includes memory impairments as well as synaptic integrity. While more studies are needed, our data do not justify the current trend aimed at replacing olive oil with canola oil.
Arty turns 11 this summer.