DLH researchers Sandra McBride, Shawn Harris, and Gary Larson co-authored a research article titled “Evaluation of the herbicide glyphosate, (aminomethyl) phosphonic acid, and glyphosate-based formulations for genotoxic activity using in vitro assays.” This April, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) named this paper an Intramural Paper of the Month, earning a spotlight on the Institute’s website.
This research investigated the possible health risks, including cancer, of glyphosate – the most commonly used herbicide in the United States and throughout the world. Chemicals and other substances like glyphosate are routinely tested for genotoxicity because damage to DNA increases the risk of cells becoming cancerous.
The team tested whether human cells are affected by exposure to pure glyphosate, glyphosate-based herbicide formulations, and other herbicides not containing glyphosate. The authors concluded that glyphosate does not appear to pose a hazard to human DNA, even at high concentrations, while the other herbicides negatively affected the cells. These findings are especially impactful due to glyphosate being found in many common household herbicides.