Title: Geneticist charts effects of nuclear disasters
Author: Sally Pearsall Ericson
Date: July 16, 2012, 7:15 AM
According to the British medical journal Lancet (www.thelancet.com) of April 24, 2010, the results of Wertelecki’s child development investigations have re-ignited a controversy among international agencies and scientists concerning the impact of internalized radiation through contaminated food on birth defects.
At a recent scientific colloquium at the University of South Alabama, Wertelecki pointed out two main lessons learned from the Chernobyl and the Fukushima-Daiichi disasters:
“It is not the scale of a nuclear accident itself that makes a human disaster it is the response by officials afterward and the public panic produced. The public should not be treated as idiots and told only the ‘good half’ of the story, as is often done by official agencies. People have the right to know, the need to believe those who are in charge.”
Wertelecki’s investigations in Ukraine show elevated population rates of certain types of birth defects, mostly of the brain and spinal cord
One mushroom eaten in affected areas may deliver as much radiation as hundreds of chest x-rays, he concluded.
This accumulation is most worrisome for pregnant women. Radiation is an agent that can not only cause birth defects, but alter the human genome with long-term effects on future generations, he stated.
Wertelecki is the former chairman of the Medical Genetics Department at the University of South Alabama from 1974 until 2010, and continues his work along with child development research teams from California, SUNY, Indiana and Emory Universities
Published: July 16th, 2012 at 1:36 pm ET