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Séralini Report Claims Toxicity of Certain Pesticides, Cites Roundup

Posted: February 3, 2014

Discredited activist-scientist Gilles-Éric Séralini, who had previously released reports about the widely debated potential toxicity of genetically modified maize, has published another report: "Major pesticides are more toxic to human cells than their declared active principles." 

The lead author's work and advocacy has been widely discredited in numerous outlets.

In the paper, the authors wrote that they tested the toxicity of nine pesticides, comparing active principles and their formulations, on three human cell lines (HepG2, HEK293 and JEG3), and they found "Roundup was by far the most toxic among the herbicides and insecticides tested. Most importantly, eight formulations out of nine were several hundred times more toxic than their active principle," the report said. 

The report noted: "We measured mitochondrial activities, membrane degradations, and caspases 3/7 activities. Glyphosate, isoproturon, fluroxypyr, pirimicarb, imidacloprid, acetamiprid, tebuconazole, epoxiconazole and prochloraz constitute respectively the active principles of the major herbicides, three insecticides and three fungicides. Fungicides were the most toxic from concentrations 300-600 times lower than agricultural dilutions, followed by herbicides, and then insecticides, with very similar profiles in all cell types. The human placental JEG3 cells appeared to be the most sensitive." 

In a final review on Nov. 28, the European Food and Safety Authority (EFSA) issued a statement saying a widely criticized paper by Séralini et al.—which suggested a link between exposure to the substances and increased incidents of tumors in rats—“contains serious defects in its design and methodology, does not meet acceptable scientific standards and there is no need to re-examine previous safety evaluations of genetically modified maize NK603.”