A commonly used fungicide regulated by the EPA and sprayed on numerous crops from apples to lettuce, kiwi to snap beans, and even golf course grass, is causing a horrible condition known as hypospadias – an abnormal condition in males in which the urethra opens on the under surface of the penis. This has also been called cleft penis. This dicarboximide fungicide is a known endocrine disruptor and yet it is still used prominently by Big Agriculture.
Recently, the Institute for the Study and Treatment of Hypospadias, Department of Urology, University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine found that:
“The fungicide vinclozolin (V) was found to inhibit sexual differentiation in male rats in an antiandrogenic manner. In the present study, V was administered to pregnant rats (p.o.) at 0, 100, or 200 mg/kg/day in corn oil during the period of sex differentiation (Gestational Day 14 to Postnatal Day 3) to examine the demasculinizing effect of this fungicide more closely.”
While some have argued that soy compounds (often known to mimic estrogen in the body) are the cause of this demasculinization, others argue that it is the vinclozolin use that is causing the birth defect. Hypospadias is a growing concern in countries like Norway, Denmark, Japan, the Netherlands, and of course the US. Embryonic exposure to the fungicide vinclozolin based virilization of females and alteration of progesterone receptor expressionin vivo in an experiment with mice. Even the EPA has admitted that the fungicide causes delayed puberty and kidney stones in human beings. BASF, a German company also known to research and distribute GMO food crops, has petitioned the US Department of Agriculture to continue use of this fungicide though evidence points to its detrimental effect on our reproductive health.
The list of nasty and crazy effects of pesticides just keeps growing.
Within the EPA’s own report it states:
“Vinclozin generally has been shown to have low acute oral/dermal/inhalation toxicity. Vinclozin is not an irritant to the eye/skin but can act as a skin sensitizer. The principal toxic effects induced by vinclozin and or its metabolites are related to its antiandrogenic activity. Androgens are the principal make steroid hormones, such as testosterone, which stimulate the development and maintenance of the male reproductive system and secondary sex characteristics. Studies show that vinclozin may have minimal antiandrogenic activity at relevant doses. . .”
In a single year, millions of pounds of vinclozin are used just in landscape maintenance, let alone on our food crops. Just what ‘relevant doses’ are BASF and other Big Ag companies trying to give us? More importantly, if this fungicide is known to cause defects in the male reproductive system, why is it being used en masse in our food supply creation?
Christina Sarich is a humanitarian and freelance writer helping you to Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and See the Big Picture. Her blog is Yoga for the New World. Her latest book is Pharma Sutra: Healing the Body And Mind Through the Art of Yoga.