Pesticide ‘leads to risk years later’

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A PESTICIDE which relatives may have been exposed to years ago could lead to a person being struck by a number of diseases today.

Washington State University (WSU) researchers say ancestral exposure to the pesticide methoxychlor may lead to kidney disease in adults, ovarian disease and obesity in future generations.

Michael Skinner, WSU professor and founder of its Centre for Reproductive Biology, said: “What your great-grandmother was exposed to during pregnancy, like the pesticide methoxychlor, may promote a dramatic increase in your susceptibility to develop disease, and you will pass this on to your grandchildren in the absence of any continued exposures.”

Methoxychlor-also known as Chemform, Methoxo, Metox or Moxie-was introduced in 1948 and widely used during the 1970s as a safer replacement for DDT.