Glufosinate hampers brain development
January 2006

The glufosinate herbicide, used in large quantities on Bayer's GM herbicide-resistant crops, has been found to have adverse effects on the brain.

Yoichiro Kuroda, the principal investigator in a project titled the Effects of Endocrine Disrupters on the Developing Brain, under the government's CREST (Core Research for Evolutional Science and Technology) program, glufosinate can hamper the development and activity of the brain .

Glufosinate is widely used in the US as a super herbicide for herbicide-resistant genetically modified crops. Kuroda found that it works like a "mock neurotransmitter" that has an aggressive effect on brains. If an embryo or a baby is exposed to the chemical, it can affect behavior, as it disturbs gene functions that regulate the developing brain, he said. Earlier research on the main ingredient of this GMO compatible herbicide found that it significantly increased aggressiveness in female rates born to mothers which had been exposed to high doses of glufosinate.

"The chemical industry has not been considering this kind of risk on the developing human brain, which is a fragile, fine chemical machine," Kuroda commented.