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SFU professor sounds alarm on danger of toxins to children’s brain development

Dr. Bruce Lanphear.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Okanagan College
March 31, 2017 - 11:52 AM

KELOWNA - Can the pesticides on your lawn and flame-resistant baby clothing cause ADHD and autism in children?

According to environmental-health expert Dr. Bruce Lanphear, even exceedingly low-level exposures to toxic chemicals can contribute to premature births, intellectual disabilities and behavioural problems.

Lanphear will reveal key aspects of the research supporting the link between widespread exposures to toxic chemicals and childhood disorders in a public talk at Okanagan College.

The presentation will take place in the lecture theatre of the College’s Vernon campus on Thursday, April 6 at 7:30 p.m. Lanphear’s talk, entitled “Little Things Matter: The Impact of Toxic Chemicals on the Developing Brain,” is part of the Science in Society Speaker Series.

Lanphear will explain how harmful chemicals, such as lead, tobacco, pesticides and flame retardants, impact brain development and will share insight into preventable brain-based disorders in the early development of children.

He will also discuss the pandemic of consumption - the largely preventable, worldwide epidemic of chronic disease and disability in society due to widespread exposures to industrial pollutants, toxic chemicals and excess consumption.

“The impact of toxic chemicals is usually subtle for an individual child, but it can be substantial at the population level,” asserts Lanphear. “Too little has been done to protect children from these ubiquitous, but insidious, toxins.”

Lanphear, MD, MPH, is a clinician scientist at the Child & Family Research Institute, BC Children’s Hospital and professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University. His primary goal is to help quantify and ultimately prevent disease and disability due to exposures to environmental contaminants and pollutants.

Admission to the lecture is $7 in advance or $10 at the door. For advanced tickets call the Okanagan Science Centre at 250-545-3644. To subscribe or obtain more information visit okanagansisss.wordpress.com.

Presented jointly by Okanagan College and the Okanagan Science Centre, the Science in Society Speaker Series is sponsored by the Vernon Lodge and Conference Centre, Starbucks Coffee, Save on Foods, and the Vernon Morning Star.


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