A New Study About Roundup and Cancer Doesn’t Say What You Probably Think It Does

RoundupJamesCopelandDreamstimeJames Copeland/DreamstimeCalifornia school groundskeeper Dewayne Johnson was awarded $286 million in damages last August in his lawsuit alleging that his use of the popular weedkiller glyphosate (sold as Roundup by Monsanto, now a division of A.G. Bayer) had caused him to fall ill with Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). A judge later cut the award to only $78 million. The company reportedly faces 9,300 other plaintiffs alleging that the herbicide caused their illnesses.

“Glyphosate has a more than 40-year history of safe use. Over those four decades, researchers have conducted more than 800 scientific studies and reviews that support the safe use of glyphosate,” asserted a statement from the company after the trial. “The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Joint FAO/WHO Meeting on Pesticide Residues (JMPR) both recently reaffirmed glyphosate does not cause cancer. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other regulatory authorities in Europe, Canada, Japan, Australia, Korea, and elsewhere routinely review all approved pesticide products and have consistently reaffirmed that glyphosate does not cause cancer.”

Who should you believe?

On its face, a new study published last week finding that exposure to glyphosate does increase the risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) in humans by 41 percent seems like a gift to the plaintiffs and their attorneys and a confirmation of their claims. The researchers obtained their result by conducting a meta-analysis of previous studies. This finding stands in contrast with the results of the 2017 Agricultural Health Study (AHS) in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, which found “no association was apparent between glyphosate and any solid tumors or lymphoid malignancies overall, including NHL and its subtypes.” (The AHS has been monitoring the health of thousands of pesticide applicators for a couple of decades now.)

Forty-one percent sounds pretty bad, but let’s put in context. About 20 new cases of NHL are diagnosed per 100,000 men and women each year. Assuming that

You can read the rest of this article at: https://reason.com/blog/2019/02/21/roundup-ready-cancer