Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Mercury Contamination Worsening, Adding to Our Damaged Genome


: Poisoned Planet: Doubling of Ocean Mercury Levels Threatens Global Health UN report exposes toxic legacy of coal, gold, and a world bent on extraction- Beth Brogan, staff writer http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/01/10-1

[Excerpted] The world's rivers, lakes, and oceans are suffering the severe consequences of modern industrial mercury pollution, according to a new UN report, which also warns the health of the entire planet and its inhabitants face a perilous future if serious action is not soon taken.

Hundreds of tons of mercury from sources such as coal-fired power plants, gold mining and other industrial processes have seaped into the world's water systems over the past century, dramatically increasing health and environmental risks for people all over the world, according to the Global Mercury Assessment 2013 released Thursday by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).....

REPORT AVAILABLE HERE http://www.unep.org/newscentre/Default.aspx?DocumentID=2702&ArticleID=9366

Majia here: Mercury, lead, arsenic, uranium, plutonium, and other chemicals are genotoxic. That means they can either
1. Destroy DNA
2. Alter transcription processes whereby DNA produces proteins

Genotoxic substances have devastating effects on developing beings whose cells are dividing rapidly.

Furthermore, the damage may not stop at the developing being who is directly impacted. Detrimental effects can span generations if reproductive DNA is affected.

We are destroying our genetic heritage and the long term result could be our extinction if reproduction becomes across time severely compromised by the bio-accumulating genetic mosaicism.

We may slip past the point of return without notice given the demands and challenges of studying toxigenomic effects across generations.

For example, the long term genetic and health effects of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki are still not understood, despite being studied more extensively than most disasters. A study of South Korean survivors is going to try and look at whether their offspring suffered more diseases:

NHK: Hereditary effects of radiation to be studied http://www3.nhk.or.jp/daily/english/20120808_23.html
[Excerpted] Children born to South Korean survivors of the 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki will take part in a new study. It will investigate whether their illnesses are linked to their parents' exposure to radiation....
...Professor Emeritus Nomura says the hereditary effects of radiation exposure have already been proven in animal experiments. He says he will work with South Korea to lead to more understanding.

Experts at the Japan-US organization Radiation Effects Research Foundation in Hiroshima say the genetic impact of the 1945 atomic bombings has not yet been determined....
Majia here: Previously efforts have been made to study the long term reproductive health of veterans subject to atomic fallout. Paul Langley chronicles this (example here)

There is more research on the health effects of Hiroshima than probably any other nuclear event (Chernobyl is being studied extensively but not enough time has elapsed to adequately track generational effects in humans)

And although knowledge is still incomplete, research has found that the range of diseases caused is wide and effects can span generations.

See for example: Kotaro Ozasa, Yukiko Shimizu, Akihiko Suyama, Fumiyoshi Kasagi, Midori Soda, Eric J. Grant, Ritsu Sakata, Hiromi Sugiyama and Kazunori Kodama. Studies of the Mortality of Atomic Bomb Survivors, Report 14, 1950–2003: An Overview of Cancer and Noncancer Diseases. Radiation Research 177, 229–243 (2012),  p. 229

The bombs dropped in Hiroshima and Nagasaki were far smaller than bombs dropped later in atmospheric testing.

The bombs dropped in Hiroshima and Nagasaki produced far less radiation than what has been produced by the reactor and spent fuel pool fires at Fukushima Daiichi.

I cannot imagine how contaminated Japan has become, and the US and Canadian west coast.


RELEVANT POSTS

Oct 26, 2012
How Much Fukushima Fuel is IN the Ocean? Majia here: I am quite concerned about a recent comment made by the founder of Japan's Skilled Veterans Corps, a group of retired skilled professionals who are committed to .
 
May 23, 2012
The following report offers a discussion of germ line mosaicism that accords with the 1956 report I looked at yesterday: Genetics Committee Report Concerning Effects of Radioactivity on Heredity. ANNEX UNSCAR REPORT: ...
 
Jul 02, 2012
Somatic or Genetic Effects? A somatic effect is roughly defined as a visible change in bodily characteristics or processes. A tumor would be indicative of a somatic change, as would be changes in white blood cell counts. A genetic effect is defined by a mutation in DNA or a mutation in the progeny of an ... http://majiasblog.blogspot.com/2012/05/mutations-germ-line-mosaicism.html · http://majiasblog.blogspot.com/2012/06/run-when-you-hear-no-immediate-danger.html ...
 
May 23, 2012
The report's authors were stars in the field of genetics and included President of the National Academy of Sciences Dr Detlev Bronk; Dr. A. Geoffrey Norman, Chairman of the Committee of the Effects of Atomic Radiation on Agriculture and Food Supplies; Dr. Henry Wexler, Chairman of the Committee on Metrological Aspects of Atomic Radiation; Dr. Shields Warren, .... Mutations: Germ Line Mosaicism · BURDENING THE SPECIES WITH GENETIC MUTATIONS: WE A..
 
Sep 08, 2012
They noted that the recessive mutations would eventually cause major health issues and even infertility http://majiasblog.blogspot.com/2012/05/burdening-species-with-genetic.html. What extent of damage have we already inflicted upon our genome and its epigenetic operations? How does .... Is Fukushima an ELE · http://majiasblog.blogspot.com/2012/05/mutations-germ-line-mosaicism.html · http://majiasblog.blogspot.com/2012/07/somatic-or-genetic-effects.html ...
 
Dec 23, 2012
As I pointed out in another thread several physicists and I worked out how much ceasium137 is contained in spent fuel at Fukushima. We took into account average burn up of the fuel and decay since the fuel was removed ...
 

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