October 29, 2010
Atrazine may not need to be regulated any differently than it is now. Recent studies continue to reaffirm EPA’s original decision in 2006 to reregister atrazine, says Tim Pastoor, principal scientist, Syngenta. Pastoor spoke after a Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP) met with the EPA in September to reevaluate the non-cancer effects of the popular corn herbicide. The SAP includes biologists, statisticians, toxicologists and other experts to provide independent scientific advice to the EPA on health and safety issues related to pesticides.
A key point made in the SAP discussions was that epidemiological data show no causal link between atrazine and adverse reproductive health effects, Pastoor says. The SAP’s findings “reaffirmed the strength of the scientific database and safety of atrazine,” he says.
During the EPA meeting, Syngenta presented data on what happens in animal studies when atrazine is administered as a large single dose or distributed over time as it would be in a real-world situation (in drinking water, for example). In Syngenta studies, doses delivered over time showed no effects up to 500 parts per million in the diet, the highest dose given, Pastoor says. This dose is tens of thousands of times higher than the current EPA water standards for atrazine.
“Syngenta and the EPA will continue to evaluate atrazine in an ongoing effort to understand even better what we already know,” Pastoor says.
To see the water quality protection requirements that apply to all products containing atrazine, go to Atrazine best management practices.
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