toxic exposure, weed killer

Widely Used Industrial Weed Killer Paraquat Linked to Parkinson’s Disease

Beasley Allen Law Firm is now investigating cases of Parkinson’s disease in people exposed to the weed killer paraquat, known by the brand name Gramoxone, and others. Paraquat is one of the most popular herbicides for weed and grass control.

In 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) restricted the use of paraquat to licensed applicators to minimize ingestion and exposure risk based on studies in animal models that showed paraquat exposure was linked to Parkinson’s disease. Thirty-two countries around the world have already banned the herbicide due to its high toxicity.  

The National Institute of Health’s National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the Parkinson’s Institute and Clinical Center (PICC) in Sunnyvale, California recently conducted studies on paraquat exposure. They have found that people exposed to paraquat developed Parkinson’s disease up to 2.5 times more often than non-users. The primary routes of paraquat exposure are during the preparation, application, and post-application of the weed killer.  

Caroline Tanner, M.D., Ph.D., clinical research director for the PICC and lead author of that study, writes:

“These findings … may have important implications for the treatment and ultimately the prevention of Parkinson’s disease.” 

Attorneys have filed more than a dozen lawsuits across the U.S. filed against Syngenta, makers of Gramoxone, and Chevron Corporation. Chevron held the rights to sell paraquat in the 1960s under an agreement with a company that Syngenta eventually purchased. 

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