Published: Sat, July 14, 2018
Health Care | By Cedric Leonard

Lawsuits alleging Roundup caused cancer can move forward

Lawsuits alleging Roundup caused cancer can move forward

A trial is underway this week in California as witnesses will begin to testify in the first case alleging that Monsanto's Roundup weed killer causes cancer.

U.S. District Judge Vince Chhabria said Tuesday that plaintiffs could present expert testimony linking the product to the cancer, the Associated Press reported.

The company had told Chhabria in March that none of the plaintiffs' specialists fulfilled scientific or legal requirements for admissibility and urged the judge to dismiss the cases.

Lawsuits by more than 400 farmers, landscapers and consumers who claim Roundup caused them to develop non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma, a type of blood cell cancer, have been combined before Chhabria.

"Moving forward, we will continue to defend these lawsuits with robust evidence that proves there is absolutely no connection between glyphosate and cancer", Monsanto Vice President Scott Partridge said in a statement.

But he said a sensible jury could conclude, based on the results of four experts he allowed, that glyphosate can cause cancer in humans.

Many government regulators have rejected a link between the active ingredient in Roundup - glyphosate - and cancer.

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Former groundskeepers Dewayne Lee Johnson filed the lawsuit in 2016 after he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Monsanto brought in its own expert, Lorelei Mucci, a cancer epidemiologist at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, who praised the 2017 study and reached the opposite conclusion from Ritz.

Claims against Monsanto received a boost in 2015, when the International Agency for Research on Cancer - part of the World Health Organization - announced that two pesticides, including glyphosate, are "probably carcinogenic to humans".

St. Louis-based Monsanto developed glyphosate in the 1970s, and the weed killer is now sold in more than 160 countries.

The weed-killer contains glyphosate, a chemical that the US Environmental Protection Agency ruled was not carcinogenic in September.

Roundup, made by USA giant Monsanto, is sprayed on gardens and parks and is used by farmers producing food crops. The agency noted that scientific studies from other countries concluded the same. Homeowners, meanwhile, used Monsanto Roundup on their lawns and gardens.

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