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Centers for Children's Environmental Health & Disease Prevention Research

Pesticide Exposure and Children’s Health

Research findings from the NIEHS/EPA Children’s Environmental Health Centers have contributed to policy decisions, particularly related to the regulation of pesticides. Children’s Center investigators research on PON1 demonstrating children’s increased sensitivity to organophosphate pesticides contributed to EPA’s decision to remove chlorpyrifos and diazinon from the retail shelves. This research has also convinced the research community that both the quality as well as the quantity of detoxification protein matters in determining sensitivity of exposure. Investigators at the Children’s Centers found that some newborns may be 26 to 50 times more susceptible to exposure to certain organophosphate pesticides than other newborns, and 65 to 130 times more sensitive than some adults.  These findings are directly related to EPA rulemaking under the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) for organophosphate pesticides.

Children’s Respiratory Health and Proximity to Major Roads

According to a recent study in The Lancet, researchers at the University of Southern California Children’s Center found that children who lived within 500 meters of a freeway, or approximately a third of a mile, since age 10 had substantial deficits in lung function by the age of 18 years, compared to children living at least 1500 meters, or approximately one mile, away.

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Last Reviewed: September 07, 2007