[ RadSafe ] uranium smoke is a teratogen

ROY HERREN royherren2005 at yahoo.com
Fri May 23 00:14:16 CDT 2008

    I recently sent the following paragraph in an article to Radsafe.
Analysis of millions of US births shows association between birth defects and preterm birth
MAY 21, 2008, WHITE PLAINS, NY – Babies born preterm were more than twice as likely to have major birth defects as full-term infants, according to a new analysis of nearly 7 million U.S. live births published online this week in the Springer journal Maternal and Child Health Journal. 
Preterm birth, live birth before 37 completed weeks gestation, is a growing national health crisis, according to the March of Dimes. More than a half million babies are born too soon each year, and the rate continues to rise. Birth defects and preterm birth are the leading causes of infant death. 
About 8 percent of babies born preterm had a birth defect, according to the research by a team of investigators from the March of Dimes, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and several other major institutions.

   Steve, a reasonable question to both you and most certainly to James/Ben is, do you think that the author(s) of the article about birth defects in Basra accounted for and corrected for the incidence of birth defects caused by preterm births?  If they didn't correct for this seemingly significant percentage of birth defects, is it possible that their already low numbers are in fact inflated?  Is there any chance that living in a war torn region, such as Basra, with the constant stress of violence and poor nutrition (a side from the folic acid issue) could cause an increase in preterm births and therefore an increase in birth defects?  If there was in fact an increase in birth defects isn't it more likely that the cause was from a more common human condition than from something exotic?
   James/Ben are you asserting that only your postulated teratogenic effects of uranium could possible account for any increase in birth defects in Basra?  Can you admit to the possibility that there are somethings that one can't know?  In other words, if "you" can't prove the actual number of birth defects caused in Basra from lack of folic acid, and "you" can't prove the actual number of birth defects caused in Basra by preterm births, then "you" can't prove the actual number of birth defects caused in Basra by any of the other myriad possibilities much less uranium!  In short, even if your hunch about uranium were correct (which I am not saying that it is), you can't prove your hunch based on the numbers.  Therefore, the "truth" about your hunch in unknowable.
   James/Ben: We live in a world of many needs and you obviously have much to offer.  I admire your tenacity, but even those with great patience grow weary of never ending quests for the impossible.   Your efforts would be better spent by focusing on the possible!  

 Roy Herren 

----- Original Message ----
From: Steven Dapra <sjd at swcp.com>
To: radsafe at radlab.nl
Sent: Thursday, May 22, 2008 6:49:49 PM
Subject: Re: [ RadSafe ] uranium smoke is a teratogen

May 22

        I don't think I posted this to RADSAFE so here it is.  My 
apologies if it is a duplicate posting.

Steven Dapra

May 20

        I would like to contribute some comments on this message.  They 
will be interspersed, and prefaced with SD.

(From James Salsman/Ben Fore, replying to Dan McCarn.)


If you want to rule uranium out, isn't in your interest to call on your 
colleagues, associates, and the scientific community at large to
quantify the precise amount of reproductive damage uranyl exposure does to 
many different kinds of mammals at many different dosages?

If not, why not?

SD's comments:

        Doing this quantification would be difficult, extremely expensive, 
and would probably serve no purpose.  In addition, the results would 
probably be inconclusive.

Please review the data in this paper from the Medical Journal of Basra 

SD's comments:

        This paper shows an increase in birth defects from 1990 to 
1998.  The Abstract ends by saying, "The above findings indicate clearly 
that there must be an exposure to a teratogenic factor prior to 1995 most 
probably radiation emitted from weapons used in the aggression against 
Iraq."  All the authors did was count birth defects, and even though the 
data are probably correct, they present no evidence to substantiate their 
assertion about the cause of the defects being exposure to radiation.

        In each year the number of birth defects is less than one percent 
of the number of births.  Birth defects can be expected in three percent of 
births, so the defect rate in this study is well below the number of 
defects that would be expected to occur.  The highest percent of defects 
occurred in 1998, when there were 10186 births, and 79 defects.  This is 
0.8 percent (rounded to the nearest tenth).  In its Methodology section, 
the authors even acknowledge that there was a "relatively small number of 
cases".  The study was conducted in only one city (Basra).

        In the Discussion, the authors write, "The fact that radioactivity 
of samples obtained from plants, soil and water in Basrah exceeded the 
natural background level, makes the hypothesis that the increased incidence 
of congenital anomalies due to such radiation more tenable."  This is so 
silly it defies description.  The authors conveniently omit any radiation 
levels.  And --- of course --- they drag in Chernobyl.>>>>>

Do you maintain that foliate deficiency and the use of phosphate fertilizer 
or both could result in such a sharp increase in less than
a decade? The vast majority listed were not related to neural tube closure 
defects, which foliate deficiency causes.

Wouldn't it be in everyone's interest to know exactly what uranyl exposure 
does, and in what amounts at different doses?>>>>>

SD's comments:

        Since the study is worthless, there is no need to comment on 

-----  END  -----

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