A Natick chemist whose research has linked fluoridated water to elevated levels of lead in children's blood is trying to convince state lawmakers to defeat a proposal that would mandate fluoridation of most public water supplies.
About 30 lawmakers are trying to require adding fluoride to water supplies that serve at least 5,000 people. Dental groups and many public health agencies, including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, promote fluoridating tap water because they say it prevents tooth decay.
But some researchers have concluded that fluoridated water is harmful to children's health, including Natick chemist Myron Coplan and Roger Masters, president of the Foundation for Neuroscience and Society at Dartmouth College and the college's Nelson A. Rockefeller Professor of Government Emeritus.
Coplan and Masters linked fluoridated water to elevated lead levels in the blood of children ages 0 to 6 in research published in the December 2000 issue of the journal Neurotoxicology.
Coplan, 83, retired in 1987 and has been collaborating with Masters for eight years in an ongoing study of environmental toxins and their effect on children's health and behavior.
This week, the two researchers warned that elevated blood lead levels in children cause cognitive impairment and suppressed impulse control in written testimony submitted to the Legislature's Joint Committee on Public Health, which has scheduled a public hearing on the fluoride proposal for today. "Evidence published in peer-reviewed journals indicates that chronic ingestion of (fluoride)-treated water is a cause of elevated blood lead in children," Coplan and Masters wrote in their testimony. "Independent, new research has provided an explanation for the elevated blood lead. Unexpected amounts of lead are extracted from brass plumbing fixtures by water in which (a type of fluoride known as fluosilicic acid) is combined with chlorine or chloramine disinfectants."
Originally posted by cybertroy
Is Flouride in water a "good idea" that isn't really a good idea, or is it something more sinister?
EWG recognizes the value of fluoride to dentistry, yet a substantial and growing body of peer-reviewed science strongly suggests that adding fluoride to tap water is not the safest way to achieve the dental health benefits of fluoridation. Over the past ten years a large body of peer-reviewed science has raised concerns that fluoride may present unreasonable health risks, particularly among children, at levels routinely added to tap water in American cities. This strong body of science has taken concerns about the health hazards of fluoride from the fringe to the mainstream of the scientific establishment. ewly obtained documents show that the chairman of the Department of Oral Health Policy and Epidemiology at Harvard told federal officials unequivocally that there was no relationship between fluoride and bone cancer, but a grant-funded publication he cites found exactly the opposite.
The Queensland government has outraged local councils by offering to take control of the state's water supplies from them to implement statewide fluoridation.
The government made the offer as part of a plan to fix the state's health system and bring children's dental care in line with other states.
Premier Peter Beattie has costed the plan at about $6 million.
The Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) described the estimate as "a sick joke". It said it would cost 10 times that amount, and the state opposition called it "woefully inadequate".
Mr Beattie said the state government was more than willing to implement water infrastructure and take over water reticulation.
"If the councils are concerned about introducing it (fluoridation) and the costs, then I say to the councils hand your water over to us and we'll do it," he said.
PREMIER Peter Beattie is facing a revolt from some of Queensland's most powerful councils over who will pay for the introduction of fluoride into the state's water supplies to combat a rising public dental bill and the nation's worst rate of tooth decay.
Health Minister Stephen Robertson yesterday moved to play down attacks from councils that the move would impose a heavy financial burden, arguing fluoridation could be achieved for an annual cost of less than $2 a person.
Announcing his support this week for fluoridation, Mr Beattie said his Government would cover the capital cost of councils fluoridating water supplies for communities with more than 5000 people.
But cabinet's decision not to fund the continuing cost of water fluoridation - estimated at more than $3million a year - has infuriated councils.
Local Government Association of Queensland executive director Greg Hallam accused Mr Beattie yesterday of short-changing councils to the tune of $56.5million over the next 30 years.
A MASSIVE study of more than 250,000 children revealed almost 70 per cent of kids living in non-fluoridated areas had more dental decay.
The study is the second within a week to highlight the impact of fluoridation on children's dental health.
"The study shows that water fluoridation significantly reduces the occurrence of dental decay in school children," said Jason Armfield, a researcher at the Australian Centre for Population Oral health at the University of Adelaide.
"The results present a powerful case for the extension of water fluoridation to those parts of NSW currently without fluoridation."
Fluoridation was introduced in Australia more than 50 years ago. However, only 70 per cent of Australia's population has access to fluoridated water.
The State Government's six million dollar offer to councils to fluoridate water supplies has been roundly criticised as inadequate by Wide Bay councils.
The proposal gives Queensland councils five years to get financial help with the cost of introducing fluoride to the drinking water supplies of communities with more than 5,000 people.
Maryborough Mayor Barb Hovard is unimpressed with the snap decision.
“I'm not happy about having this decision dumped on us overnight, just to get more cookie points for the Premier,” Cr Hovard says.
“Obviously it will save mega-bucks for the health department, so I do understand where they’re coming from.”
Hervey Bay deputy mayor, Mick Kruger, says 6 million dollars won't go nearly far enough.
Originally posted by Mayet
Why is everyone in my home state apathetic ... why will they just LET this happen.....
Vaccine against tooth decay successful in animal tests: researchers
Portuguese scientists said they had developed an experimental vaccine against tooth decay which was successful in laboratory tests on rats and could pave the way for a version that works for humans.
"What we found is that the animals which were vaccinated with this protein developed much smaller lesions than the control group which had not been vaccinated," said Paula Ferreira, one of three Oporto University researchers who worked on the vaccine.
"There is still a long road to travel (for a human version). Before that experimental models which are closer to man need to be tested, namely in monkeys, and for that financing is needed," she told Lisbon-based TSF radio.
Rats were used to test the experimental vaccine because the type of tooth decay they develop is similar to that which occurs in humans, she added.
The three scientists have already patented the vaccine in Portugal and are working on doing so in the United States where they are also seeking funding to further their research, Ferreira said.
Tooth decay, or cavities, is one of the most common health complaints in the world. It is caused when acids produced by bacteria that are normally present in the mouth eat away at a tooth.
Researchers in various countries have sought to develop a vaccine which would eliminate the bacteria that creates this acid from the mouth in order to prevent tooth decay from forming.
Originally posted by loam
I say the various municipalities should discontinue their fluoridation programs and apply the taxpayer's money to further this type of research. No?
Originally posted by soficrow
Why not a good old-fashioned bacteriophage?
Originally posted by loam
Seriously, though, would they be any safer than a vaccine?