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Organophosphates: Enzyme Paraoxynase Research Proposal

Volume 576: debated on Sunday 18 February 1996

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asked Her Majesty's Government:Whether they are aware of the research

The effect of the human serum paraoxynase polymorphism is reversed with diazoxon soman and sarin by Holly G. Davies et al and published in Nature Genetics, Volume 14, November 1996; and, if so, whether they are prepared to fund research into the evaluation of enzyme paraoxynase (PONI) status of farmers and Gulf War veterans who believe their ill health is caused by exposure to organophosphates.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health
(Baroness Cumberlege)

We are aware of this research. Currently, the Government have no plans to fund research specifically into the evaluation of enzyme paraoxynase (PONI) status of farmers and Gulf War veterans. However, we are currently funding a number of research projects, including an epidemiological study costing approximately £0.5 million which is being undertaken at the Institute of Occupational Medicine in Edinburgh to investigate the effects of organophosphate sheep dips on sheep farmers and sheep farm workers; and, as recently announced, two studies on Gulf War-related health matters costing some £1.3 million.