News

Vanessa Fitsanakis, Ph.D.

NEOMED Researcher in The New Food Economy

Toxicologist Vanessa Fitsanakis, Ph.D., who studies the potential relationship between herbicides and Parkinson’s disease, is quoted in an article that considers who gets to determine the safety of a chemical such as glyphosphate—the active ingredient in the weed killer Roundup. The article, titled “We’re Asking the Wrong Questions about Glyphosphate,’’ appears in the publication The New Food Economy.

“Fitsanakis is not particularly concerned about our exposure to glyphosate through food. The amount that we could be ingesting through food is smaller than we think, she explains. The vast majority of glyphosate-based herbicides are sprayed on soy, cotton, and corn, crops we generally don’t eat directly. Instead, Fitsanakis’ main concern is the health of farmworkers, who are directly exposed to Roundup whey they apply it,” writes author Katarina Zimmer.

“’I want to let people know, if you want to use your [herbicides], I’m okay with that,” [Fitsanakis] says, “but you need to be a lot more diligent in making sure that they’re applied correctly, and you have the proper personal protective equipment on, because I think there’s real reason to be concerned.’”

The New Food Economy is a non-profit newsroom that writes about the economics, politics and culture of food.

Dr. Fitsanakis is vice chair of pharmaceutical sciences and associate professor of pharmaceutical sciences at NEOMED. Learn more about Dr. Fitsanakis and the research in neurodegenerative disease and aging at NEOMED.