Regulatory update #159

11 October 2012

Is there a link between paraquat and Parkinson’s Disease?

Recently there has been media coverage suggesting a link between the herbicide paraquat and Parkinson’s Disease (PD). Parkinson’s Disease is a degenerative disease of the central nervous system that is more common in the elderly.

According to national support group Parkinson’s Australia (external site), age is, in fact, almost the only definite risk factor currently known with no firm evidence of other environmental or genetic risk factors playing a role. While this remains the orthodox view, there is a hypothesis that exposure to farm chemicals, such as paraquat, may be a factor in promoting Parkinson’s Disease in some people.

While both epidemiological and laboratory research continues, the findings to date have not provided any clear evidence linking paraquat with Parkinson’s Disease.

Paraquat is currently under review. Information obtained from the review process will be assessed to determine if the science has changed and whether, in turn, the APVMA’s regulatory position on paraquat needs to be strengthened.

Maximum Residue Limits (MRL) tables for October 2012

 The Maximum Residue Limits Standard tables for agricultural and veterinary chemicals in food and animal feedstuff have been updated for October 2012.

Approved active constituents updated on 2 October 2012

The record of approved active constituents was updated on 2 October 2012.

Reminder—open for public consultation

The APVMA is currently seeking comment on:


Advice Summaries published since last issue are listed below. For a complete list and further information, please refer to the Advice Summaries content on our website.

  • Fluxapyroxad
  • Moxitak SE LV Low Volume Drench For Sheep
  • Ecopar Forte Herbicide
  • Penthiopyrad
  • Dupont Fontelis Fungicide
  • Exodus Pour-On For Cattle

Application Summaries are updated weekly. For a complete list, please refer to the Application Summaries content on our website.

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