Thursday, December 03, 2009

Bug spray link to penis defect

Note the rubric below. Also note that approximately 30% of the U.S. population applies DEET as protection against West Nile Virus and other mosquito-borne viruses. With such a high usage-rate, one would think that there would be an epidemic of the problems described below if DEET were the cause. There are various alternatives to DEET but they are not as long-lasting in their effects. Getting West Nile and related viruses can however be quite long-lasting in its effects so avoidance of DEET could have REALLY serious effects

PREGNANT women may wish to avoid insect repellent after a study found a link to an increasingly common birth defect, experts say. European researchers have found an association between mums who used the repellent in the earliest phase of pregnancy and an increased rate of hypospadias in the penises of their male children.

This is where the opening of the penis is in the wrong place - usually back from the tip and on the underside - and it often requires corrective surgery. It affects one to two boys in every 500 births, and University of NSW Professor of Toxicology and Occupational Health Chris Winder said the incidence was increasing.

"This particular defect of the male urethra is quite common, and has been linked to environmental sources as well as genetic problems," he said. "Here is more evidence that pregnant mothers, or mothers planning pregnancy, should limit their exposure to chemicals such as insect repellents." Prof Winder warned that while the research found an association between repellent use and the defect, it fell short of confirming it as a cause.

Researchers quizzed mums of 471 babies with hypospadias, and another 490 randomly selected babies, about their lifestyles and chemical exposures during pregnancy. They found that use of repellents during the first three months of pregnancy was associated with an 81 per cent increased risk of hypospadias. The most common active ingredient in repellents was N,N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide - otherwise known as DEET.


Will a glass of red wine keep tooth decay at bay?

This is a very preliminary study. Laboratory glassware is a long way from a human mouth

For those who value their super-bright smile, it has always been the drink to avoid. But red wine could actually be good for your teeth, scientists have claimed. They have found it contains chemicals that could ward off decay by stopping harmful bacteria from sticking to teeth. The findings, due to be published in the journal Food Chemistry, suggest a daily glass of red could help to keep teeth healthy and reduce the need for fillings.

In contrast, a recent study showed white wine could damage dental health because its high acid content erodes the enamel that coats the surface of a tooth.

Red wine, when drunk in moderation, is already thought to have a protective effect against heart disease and some forms of cancer. But in recent years, scientists have also been investigating whether it could help to prevent dental decay. Last year, a team of U.S. researchers discovered that chemicals found in large quantities in the discarded seeds and skins of grapes pressed to make wine blocked the ability of corrosive bacteria to bind with tooth enamel.

The most damaging bacteria, called streptococcus mutans, live in the mouth and feed on sugar in the diet. Once it sticks to the enamel, the organism triggers a process called demineralisation, where acid starts to punch holes in the teeth. In the latest study, researchers at Pavia University in Italy exposed the bacteria to a small amount of red wine that had all its alcohol content removed. This was so they could clarify if it was the alcohol, or something else in wine, that had a beneficial effect. The results showed harmful organisms were unable to cling to teeth or saliva once exposed to red wine.

The scientists said the active ingredient was a group of compounds called proanthocyanidins, chemicals rich in antioxidants that are found mainly in grape skins. However, the researchers are investigating whether the compounds can be extracted and used as a form of treatment on their own, as some wines contain sugars and acids that can also be corrosive to teeth....

However, the consumption of too much alcohol is linked to high blood pressure, liver problems and infertility.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

LOL - All these studies showing Wine can be "good" for you and yet they never mention that plain Grape juice should yield the same benefit sans the alcohol.