Pollution affects children’s brains
7 June 2007
BRUSSELS – At the age of three, children with high lead concentrations in their blood have an IQ up to 17 points lower than their peers with normal blood counts.
This has been scientifically demonstrated for the first time in a recent study among 200 Flemish children, the Gazet van Antwerpen and Het Belang van Limburg report.
“The study shows that air pollution from cars and industry not only has an impact on physical health, but also on mental development,” says Dr. Nik van Larebeke, a specialist in cancer prevention at the University of Ghent.
“An almost linear link emerged between the concentration of lead in the umbilical cord blood and intelligence at a later age,” Larebeke says. “It also emerged that children with a higher concentration of PCBs start to crawl and walk later. The boys also showed less typically male behaviour during play. It is high time that the government take measures to protect citizens, even before birth, from this kind of pollution.”
[Copyright Expatica News 2007]
Subject: Belgian news