Exposure to Roundup, a popular weed killer that contains the chemical glyphosate, has been linked to an increased risk for non-Hodgkin Lymphoma and other types of cancer. In March 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) published a report stating that glyphosate is “probably carcinogenic to humans.”
What is Roundup?
Roundup is a non-selective herbicide, meaning it will kill most plants. Glyphosate stops the production of a specific enzyme called the “shikimic acid pathway” that is necessary for plants and some microorganisms to grow. Glyphosate was first commercialized by the Monsanto Company in 1974.
Which Products Contain Glyphosate?
Glyphosate is contained in more than 750 products in the U.S. Some of the most popular include:
- Roundup Ultra
- Roundup Pro
- Fallow Master
- Glyphosate herbicide by DuPont
- Silhouette by Cenex/Land O’Lakes
- Rattler by Helena
- MirageR by Platte
- JuryR by Riverside/Terra
- Touchdown by Zeneca
Monsanto’s History of Deception
In 2009, a French court found Monsanto guilty of lying when it claimed that Roundup is “biodegradable,” “environmentally friendly” and “leaves the soil clean.” Environmental groups in France brought the case in 2001 on the basis that glyphosate is classed as “dangerous for the environment” by the European Union (EU). The company was fined 15,000 euros ($22,400).
While Monsanto insists that Roundup is as safe to humans as aspirin, a study published in the journal Entropy in April 2013 found glyphosate residues in sugar, corn, soy and wheat, which “enhance the damaging effects of other food-borne chemical residues and toxins in the environment to disrupt normal body functions and induce disease.”
How Can Roundup Cause Cancer?
Monsanto claims that Roundup is harmless to humans and animals because the chemical’s mechanism of action, the shikimate pathway, is absent in all animals. However, the shikimate pathway is found in bacteria, which is a main reason why Roundup can cause cancer and other life-threatening diseases in humans.
Bacteria outnumber cells in the human body 10-to-1. For every cell in the body, there are at least 10 microbes of various kinds, and all of them have the shikimate pathway, so they will all react to the presence of Roundup.
Worse still, glyphosate seems to do the most damage to beneficial bacteria, allowing pathogens to overgrow and take over. When this occurs, the body attempts to eliminate toxins produced by the pathogens. Chronic inflammation is the result, which places the patient at an increased risk for developing chronic and potentially life-threatening diseases like Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
What is Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma?
According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (also known as non-Hodgkin lymphoma, NHL, or just lymphoma) is a disease that starts in cells called lymphocytes, which are part of the body’s immune system. Lymphocytes are in the lymph nodes and other lymphoid tissues such as the spleen and bone marrow. The main types of lymphomas are Hodgkin lymphoma (also known as Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Hodgkin disease or Hodgkin’s disease) and Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Symptoms of Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma
Non-Hodgkin lymphoma can cause many different symptoms, depending on the stage and where it is in the body. In some cases the disease might not cause any recognizable signs until the tumor grows quite large. When symptoms do present, however, they may include:
- Enlarged lymph nodes
- Swollen abdomen
- Feeling full after only a small amount of food
- Chest pain or pressure
- Shortness of breath or cough
- Weight loss
- Night sweats
- Low red blood cell counts (anemia)
There are a number of different treatments available for patients diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Treatment options depend on the type of lymphoma and its stage (extent), as well as the other prognostic factors. The main types of treatment include:
- Targeted therapy
- Stem cell transplant
Roundup Cancer Studies
When the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently released and then quickly withdrew a document on the cancer risks associated with Roundup, Monsanto framed the move to make it look like its herbicide had been cleared. However, numerous studies have identified a link between glyphosate exposure and several types of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
In the retracted document, EPA initially found insufficient evidence to classify glyphosate as a probable carcinogen (cancer-causing substance), citing research that was unable to find an association between glyphosate exposure and increased rates of NLH. The problem is that there are many forms of the disease, and by trying to link a whole group of cancers to glyphosate exposure, the agency may have missed associations with specific types of lymphoma.
One such study published in the International Journal of Cancer (IJC) in 2008 found that exposure to glyphosate tripled the risk of a subtype of NLH called small lymphocytic lymphoma. Links like these may be missed when the data is pooled together with other kinds of cancer that have different causes. Moreover, there is often a lag time between exposure to a carcinogen and a diagnosis of cancer. The same study also found that a person’s risk of being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma began to increase over 10 years after exposure.
Types of Cancer Linked to Roundup
Our lawyers are accepting potential lawsuits for people who developed the following forms of cancer after using or being exposed to Roundup weed killer:
- Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
- Large Diffuse B-cell
- Follicular Lymphoma
- Cutaneous T-Cell
- Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma
- Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia
- Small Lymphocytic Lymphoma
- Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL)
- Primary Central Nervous System (CNS) Lymphoma
Other Roundup Side Effects
In addition to the forms of cancer listed above, Roundup has been linked to the following side effects:
- Gastrointestinal diseases (inflammatory bowel disease, chronic diarrhea, colitis and Crohn’s disease)
- Cardiovascular disease
- Parkinson’s disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
- And more
California Jury Awards Plaintiff $80 Million Settlement in Roundup Cancer Lawsuit
April 1, 2019 – Monsanto has been ordered to pay an $80 million settlement to a San Francisco man who claims that his development of non-Hodgkin lymphoma was the result of his use of Roundup weed killer, in a rare split-trial which could influence the outcome of thousands more cases.
Landmark Roundup Trial Ends in $289 Million Award to Plaintiff
August 13, 2018 – Monsanto took a massive hit last week following a California jury’s decision to award a former groundskeeper just shy of $290 million in a landmark case alleging the company’s Roundup weed killer causes cancer. The jurors ruled that Roundup and Ranger Pro products presented a “substantial danger” to the now 46-year-old Dewayne “Lee” Johnson, who developed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma after using the spray for more than 2 years as a groundskeeper in San Francisco.
France to Phase Out Glyphosate Over 5 Years
October 6, 2017 – French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has announced that France will phase out glyphosate over the next 5 years until the herbicide is banned outright in 2022. Most French farmers have reacted in favor of the proposal, with Christiane Lambert, head of France’s largest farm union, FNSEA, saying it meant the government was “starting to understand that a full ban would be impossible to apply in France.”
Roundup Labels to Carry Cancer Warning in California
June 27, 2017 – Glyphosate will be added to California’s list of known human carcinogens effective July 7, according to the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA). The designation of glyphosate under Proposition 65 will proceed following an unsuccessful attempt by Monsanto to block the listing in trial court and after requests for stay were denied by a state appellate court and California’s Supreme Court.
Monsanto Sued for ‘Misleading’ Labeling of Roundup
April 13, 2017 – A lawsuit has been filed against Monsanto by a pair of nonprofit organizations who claim the company is misleading the public by claiming that Roundup targets an enzyme found in plants, but not in people or pets. The complaint was filed jointly by Beyond Pesticides and Organic Consumers Association (OCA) on behalf of the general public in Washington D.C. under the District of Columbia’s Consumer Protection Procedures Act.
Study Links Glyphosate to Autism
March 8, 2017 – A new study (PDF) looked at elevated levels of glyphosate in a set of triplets, two of whom had autism. After the children’s diet was changed to include organic foods only, their glyphosate levels dropped sharply and their functioning improved significantly. In addition to linking glyphosate with autism, the study demonstrated a potential mechanism by which the herbicide may cause brain damage, as people are exposed to high amounts of glyphosate when they eat genetically modified foods which are engineered to resist it.
Judge Says Roundup Labels May Carry Cancer Warning in California
January 30, 2017 – Fresno County Superior Court Judge Kristi Kapetan has ruled that state health officials can require Monsanto to include a cancer warning on Roundup labels. If California carries out the proposal, it would be the first state in the U.S. to require such strict labeling for the widely-used herbicide. Judge Kapetan still must issue a formal decision, which she said would come soon.
Roundup Linked to Liver Disease, Study Finds
January 10, 2017 – Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup weed killer, causes non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in laboratory rats at very low doses, according to a study published Monday in Scientific Reports. The study is unique in that it is the first to show a causative link between the consumption of Roundup and a serious disease, according to the researchers.
Roundup lawsuits have been consolidated into a multidistrict litigation (MDL No. 2741) for pretrial handling before U.S. District Judge Vince Chhabria in the Northern District of California. The complaints allege that Roundup caused farmers, landscapers, golf course and agricultural workers to face an increased risk for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and other types of cancer.
1974 – First commercialized
Glyphosate first commercialized by Monsanto.
1976 – FDA inspects Industrial Bio-Test Industries
FDA inspects Industrial Bio-Test Industries (IBT) and raises questions about the validity of the lab’s toxicity tests of glyphosate. EPA subsequently found the research to be invalid and identified “routine
1983 – Top executives convicted
Three top IBT executives are convicted of fraud.
1985 – EPA classification
EPA classifies glyphosate as “possibly carcinogenic to humans.”
1991 – EPA changes classification
EPA changes glyphosate classification to “evidence of non-carcinogenicity in humans” but warns that the reclassification does not mean that the chemical cannot cause cancer.
1991 – Monsanto hires second independent lab
Monsanto hires a second independent lab, Craven Laboratories, to test the toxicity of glyphosate. Later that year, the owner and several employees are convicted of falsifying pesticide and herbicide studies.
1995 – Glyphosate fact sheet released
EPA releases a glyphosate fact sheet which states that exposure to glyphosate can cause congestion of the lungs, rapid breathing, kidney damage and reproductive side effects.
1996 – Monsanto introduces seeds
Monsanto introduces “Roundup Ready” seeds that are resistant to glyphosate.
1996 – Lawsuit filed against Monsanto
New York Attorney General files a lawsuit against Monsanto for false and misleading advertising for claims that Roundup is “safer than table salt” and “practically non-toxic.”
2009 – Court rules that Monsanto lied
French court rules that Monsanto lied when it called Roundup “biodegradable” and “environmentally friendly”
2013 – Entropy report published
Report published in Entropy finds glyphosate residues in sugar, corn, soy and wheat.
FREE Confidential Case Review
If you or a loved one was diagnosed with any of the forms of Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma listed above after using or being exposed to Roundup weed killer, you may be eligible to obtain compensation by filing a lawsuit and we can help. Contact our lawyers today for a free confidential case evaluation by filling out the form below or calling toll free 24/hrs a day by dialing (866) 588-0600.
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