How does Dursban Work?
Dursban works by interrupting the electrochemical process between the nerves of the muscles in the body. Acetylcholine is a type of chemical called a neurotransmitter that is produced by the body and is used to "fire" neurons. Acetylcholine is inhibited by an enzyme called cholinesterase. When Dursban enters the body, it alters cholinesterase which prevents acetylcholine from being inactivated. As the acetylcholine builds up in the body, the muscles become over-stimulated and can ultimately lead to convulsions, paralysis and death. (Source)
In general, birth defects associated with the central nervous system are very rare (2-4 per 1000 births). Specific birth defects associated with the eye, lip, and heart are even more rare. Birth defects have been linked to Dursban exposure during the first trimester of pregnancy in several health studies1.
Canadian Advocates Against Pesticides
Symptoms of Poisoning (Source)
- Slurred Speech
- Muscle Contractions
- Tremors of the Tongue or Eye Lids
- Impaired Memory
1. Sherman, J. D. (1996). Chloropyrifos (Dursban) - Associated Birth Defects: Reported of Four Cases. Archives of Environmental Health, Vol. 51 No. 1, 5-7.