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Glyphosate and Cancer: The Scientific Evidence Rebuttal

A HEAL report released today Scientific evidence showing that glyphosate is carcinogenic has so far been rejected in an EU scientific assessment.. Yet it is this assessment that will form the basis of negotiations on its re-authorization in the EU. [1]. Serious scientific errors and distortions in the interpretation of European and international scientific standards highlighted in this report also call into question the validity of the assessment and its primary conclusions.

The HEAL Network warns that failure to recognize the carcinogenic potential of substances will be a step backwards in Europe’s fight against cancer.

As European institutions and member states begin the process of re-evaluating glyphosate for possible renewal, the Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) 11 animal studies provided by manufacturers in 2019 as part of the substance’s reauthorization application file were closely examined. With the help of two renowned experts, HEAL found statistically significant tumor incidence, clearly confirming the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classification of glyphosate as a “probable carcinogen”. [2].

Professor Christopher Portier, an independent expert in the design, analysis and interpretation of environmental health data, with a specialty in carcinogenicity, said: ” Malignant lymphomas, kidney and liver tumors, keratoacanthomas of the skin… Glyphosate fuels cancer and the list goes on. In ten of the eleven animal studies that were part of the glyphosate reauthorization dossier, we found that animals developed tumors. No matter how you look at it, there is substantial evidence of carcinogenicity and that evidence meets the criteria for classifying glyphosate as a substance suspected of having carcinogenic potential in humans. »

According to EU pesticide legislation [3]Substances that meet the criteria for classification as suspected human health carcinogens (category 1B in the EU) should be withdrawn from the EU market.

Nevertheless, the Glyphosate Assessment Panel (AGG) and the Risk Assessment Committee (RAC) of the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) have publicly stated that there is insufficient evidence compared to glyphosate. Causes cancer [4]. All indications of scientific inconsistency raised by HEAL with independent scientists and other civil society groups during the ECHA-RAC negotiations have so far been thoroughly dismissed. [5].

Dr. Peter Clausing, toxicologist and co-author of the report, said: ” Animals exposed to glyphosate developed tumors An effect considered evidence of carcinogenicity by international and European guidelines, with a significantly higher incidence than their unexposed control group. Yet EU risk assessors rejected all findings about tumors in their analysis, concluding that they all occurred by chance and none of them were actually linked to drug exposure. Glyphosate. »

Dr Angeliki Lissimachau, senior science policy officer at HEAL and co-author of the report, said: “ Scientific evidence shows that glyphosate can cause cancer And so continue to be dangerous to human health – but the EU’s assessment continues to be based primarily on the industry’s own arguments, leading to harmful chemicals such as glyphosate being marketed as safe. EU institutions and member states can no longer rely on these ineffective scientific assessments to make their decisions. The EU’s mission to defeat cancer starts here and now with a ban on glyphosate. »

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which is in charge of peer review of the risk assessment of glyphosate, announced a significant delay in publishing its conclusions. [5]. This means that the current approval of glyphosate will inevitably be extended for another year, leaving vulnerable groups at risk of exposure to the harmful pesticide. Based on the opinions of ECHA and EFSA, the European Commission and EU Member States will decide on the 15-year license renewal application for glyphosate.

As a reminder, Generations Future also published a report on the genotoxicity of glyphosate. This work conducted by our scientists proves that Numerous studies prove that glyphosate causes genotoxic and mutagenic effects and these have been ignored by the authorities. The same is true of mechanistic studies demonstrating the oxidative stress effects of glyphosate. However, the repetition of these positive studies and the conclusions of internationally recognized research organizations should have given a warning signal to the authorities to re-evaluate the reliability of the studies provided by the manufacturers and to request additional studies, especially in experiments that allow the cells being studied to be modified. or germ cell examination, required for classification in Category 1. Instead, the authority merely reiterated the arguments already outlined by the German authorities in charge of drafting the renewal dossier in 2016, arguments taken mainly from files submitted by manufacturers. This biased assessment of genotoxicity greatly affects the assessment of carcinogenicity of glyphosate. Read our report.

1 – The HEAL report can be downloaded here: to-cancer-2022.pdf

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