To: IUTOX and the International Congress of Toxicology
Ms. Shawn Lamb
Executive Director, International Union of Toxicology (IUTOX)
Chair, Scientific Program Committee
International Congress of Toxicology
Dear Ms. Lamb and Dr. Cyr,
On July 20, Dr. Jack Thrasher, Toxicologist, filed a letter of complaint, via the IUTOX fraud and ethics violation report site. It was regarding your organizations allowing an unscientific presentation be given at the IUTOX XI International Congress of Toxicology in Montreal - Risk from Inhaled Mycotoxins from Mold-Infested Produce. The experimenters tossed lemons in a waste basket and concluded absence of human illness from indoor mold toxin exposure. This letter is being sent to you in support of Dr. Thrashers request for investigation. Dr. Thrasher wrote:
Sent: Friday, July 20, 2007 10:13 PM
Subject: Water Damaged Buildings
Dear Sir or Madam,
I am writing out of scientific concern with the hope of drawing your attention to a very serious matter with far reaching ramifications; one that is proliferating erroneous scientific information to a diverse spectrum of science. At your recent meeting the following subject matter was introduced by the authors as follows:
IUTOX ICT Montreal, Canada (July 15-19, 2007)
Bruce Kelman, PhD, DABT, FATS, and Clara Chan, MS, will present the poster Risk from Inhaled Mycotoxins from Mold-Infested Produce (Abstract #PT6.105) at the International Union of Toxicology (IUTOX) XIth International Congress of Toxicology on July 17, 2007 in Montreal, Canada. The lab that they cite as the second author,Indoor Environmental Hygiene Laboratories, is also Veritox.
Key spin sentence, meant to confuse:
'Despite the findings of learned bodies, there continue to be concerns throughout North America and Northern Europe about mycotoxins from mold spores in indoor environments.' What are the learned bodies to which these authors refer The only publications, which are position papers, available on this subject are written by these authors alone and/or individuals associated with them. Their fallacious argument has been published in ACOEM, AAAAI and ACMT.
The authors of this abstract continue to ignore the overall complexity of the indoor water-damaged environment, which contains a host of mold and bacteria (gram negative and positive) genera, mycotoxins, endotoxins, 1-3-beta-Dglucans, antigens, MVOCs among others. In addition, spores are not the only particulates. Gorny and Brasel have clearly demonstrated that fine particulates less than the size of spores are also present. This fine particulate matter contains mycotoxins and other toxic materials. They are inhaled deep into the alveoli where simple diffusion takes place. I believe it is incumbent upon your August Body to make sure that the correct information is conveyed to the world toxicologists. After all, even the IOM report, Damp Indoor Spaces, refutes whatthese authors are attempting to convey. In addition, they never mention the bacteria of the genera of Streptomyces and Nocardiopsis that also produce toxins that, according to the work of Hirvonen's group in Finland and Pestka group at MSU, act synergistically with mycotoxins (macrocyclic trichothecenes at least) to cause inflammatory conditions both in vivo and in vitro. Let us look at the true science of the issue, not a poorly designed bench study that uses citrus fruit contaminated with Penicillium. The design does not adequately address the complexity of the environment created by water intrusion resulting in subsequent microbial (bacteria and molds) contamination. Finally the papers by Lewis on Aspergillus species isolated from tertiary cancer patients and from cases of aspergillosis demonstrate that gliotoxin is produced in vivo and in vitro.
If I had more space I would gladly continue. As proof of the information I am
conveying to you, ask the authors of this paper to site even one research paper that concludes it is not plausible humans experience symptoms of toxicity from exposure to mycotoxins within the indoor environment. For your perusal, I have attached a recent article on the subject from the Wall Street Journal. I would like to submit for your review and for possible publication through IUTOX a draft of the complexity of the indoor environment resulting from water intrusion. It is not in its final state. If you are interested I would like the opportunity to bring the literature citation up to date.
Jack D. Thrasher, Ph.D.
As Dr. Thrasher pointed out, because of the complexity of the matter, it is a non-sequitur to drop lemons into a wastebasket and conclude anything of relevance regarding the existence or absence of human illness from exposure to microbial toxins found within water damaged buildings. It is not the consensus of learned bodies that exposure to these microbial toxins has been scientifically established not to cause human illness. For IUTOX to promote such a concept is to promote a false concept misinforming the toxicologists of the world and thereby potentially harming the lives of millions.
In agreement with Dr. Thrasher, the laws of Canada established by Health Canada, Residential indoor air quality guidelines for moulds, enacted March 12, 2007 and pursuant to the subsection 55(3) of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999, states:
Mould growth can influence air quality because both spores and mycelial fragments are dispersed into the air and can be inhaled. Their penetration into the bronchial tree depends on their size. The smaller particles penetrate deeper into the lungs.
Three features of mould biochemistry are of special interest in terms of human health: Mould cell walls contain (1->3)-ÃÃ¯Â¿Â½-D-glucan, a compound with inflammatory properties; Mould spores and mycelial fragments contain allergens; and The spores of some species contain low molecular weight chemicals that are cytotoxic or have other toxic properties (e.g. satratoxins and atranones produced by Stachybotrys chartarum).
...the large number of mould species and strains growing in buildings and the large inter-individual variability in human response to mould exposure preclude the derivation of exposure limits.
In support of Dr. Thrashers request of investigation and in accordance with the laws of Canada, the undersigned names also request an investigation by your fraud and the ethics violations committee as to how this presentation was allowed into your conference.
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