In 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) determined glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup® herbicide, is "probably carcinogenic to humans." Patients diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and related cancers filed lawsuits against Monsanto Company, the makers of Roundup®. According to lawsuits, Monsanto knew or should have known Roundup® may increase the risk of lymphoma. Roundup® lawyers can help these people determine if they are eligible for compensation.
People diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and other cancers after using Roundup® weed killer are filing lawsuits against Monsanto Company, the herbicide’s manufacturer. According to court documents filed by Roundup® lawyers, Monsanto failed to warn about the cancer risk.
Since the mid-1970s, Americans used Roundup® on commercial farms, home lawns, parks, forests and roadsides to keep weeds from growing. Monsanto aggressively marketed its product as safe and easy to use. According to Monsanto’s marketing, Roundup® is “less toxic than table salt” and “practically non-toxic.”
Roundup® made Monsanto $4.8 billion in 2015.
Unfortunately, many Americans did not know they were exposing themselves to a probable carcinogen. In 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO)’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) determined glyphosate was a Group 2A agent. This means the agency found evidence to link glyphosate to cancer, and it is “probably carcinogenic to humans.”
Lawsuits filed against Monsanto claim the company knew glyphosate could cause cancer before the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved it for use in the 70s.
Cancers in Roundup® lawsuits include:
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL)
- Diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL)
- Follicular lymphoma
- Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)
- Small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL)
- Hairy cell leukemia (HCL)
- Mantle cell lymphoma
- Burkitt lymphoma
- Skin lymphoma
- Marginal zone B-cell lymphomas
- Other cancers
People diagnosed with cancer after using Roundup® file lawsuits to receive compensation for physical, emotional and financial damages — including those caused by wrongful death. Roundup® lawyers help patients and their families find out if they are eligible for compensation from Monsanto Company.
Does Roundup® Cause Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma?
In 2015, the World Health Organization’s special investigative unit — the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) — classified glyphosate as a Group 2A agent. These agents are “probably carcinogenic to humans.” Specifically, the studies found a link between glyphosate and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a rare cancer.
IARC researchers from 11 countries met to review scientific evidence from independent, publically available studies. Their goal was to provide public health organizations around the world with enough evidence to take action. According to the IARC, their data is “reviewed by the world’s leading experts without vested interests.”
The final published monograph with more than 250 references found cancer in mice and rats as well as DNA damage. Human studies found DNA damage in residents of communities where workers sprayed glyphosate.
Researchers also found a link between glyphosate and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in farmers and other workers exposed to the herbicide. In case-control studies in Sweden, Canada and the U.S., IARC found more than 2,500 cases of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
“For the herbicide glyphosate, there was limited evidence of carcinogenicity in humans for non-Hodgkin lymphoma,” the IARC said in its monograph. “The evidence in humans is from studies of exposures, mostly agricultural, in the USA, Canada, and Sweden published since 2001. In addition, there is convincing evidence that glyphosate also can cause cancer in laboratory animals” and “there is sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity in experimental animals.”
Following the IARC’s findings, California added it to its known carcinogens list.
EPA Linked Glyphosate to Cancer in Animals
For decades researchers suspected glyphosate could cause cancer. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxicology Branch classified glyphosate as a “category C oncogene” in 1985.
A group of eight EPA researchers and doctors reviewed animal studies in which mice developed kidney tumors after glyphosate exposure. They also found significant fetal toxicity which led to the death of pregnant animals.
Monsanto rebutted the study and lobbied for the EPA to reverse its determination. This led to the EPA reversing its ruling in 1991. After the IARC released its findings, the EPA said it would reevaluate glyphosate again.
Who is At Risk of Roundup® Cancer?
Anyone who used Roundup® may be at risk of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma or related cancer. People who developed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma used the herbicide for years on commercial farms, city parks and roads. But, some home gardeners filed lawsuits after developing cancer after using Roundup® just once a week for several months.
People at increased risk of Roundup® exposure include:
- Independent and commercial farmers
- Turf managers
- City and county workers
- Park and recreation workers
- Migrant workers
- Agricultural workers
- Forestry workers
Studies found glyphosate in animal tissue and human urine. One 2014 study in the Journal of Environmental & Analytical Toxicology found “chronically ill humans showed significantly higher glyphosate residues in urine than healthy population.” This led authors to determine glyphosate exposure could lead to “numerous health hazards” and “studying the impact of glyphosate residues on health is warranted and the global regulations for the use of glyphosate may have to be re-evaluated.”
The IARC monograph also tested urine of farm workers in the U.S. Only days after spraying glyphosate to crops, 60 percent of the workers had the herbicide in their urine.
People Who Filed Roundup® Lawsuits
Commercial farmers, city workers and home gardeners alike hired Roundup® lawyers to file lawsuits against Monsanto after their cancer diagnosis. The company advertised, “You can feel good about using herbicides by Monsanto. They carry a toxicity category rating of ‘practically non-toxic’ as it pertains to mammals, birds and fish.”
Lawsuits claim the agricultural giant knew or should have known glyphosate and Roundup® could cause cancer, but failed to warn the public. Not only did Monsanto fail to warn, for decades it falsely presented to the public that its product was safe, lawsuits say.
But Monsanto’s scientists disagree with studies that show cancer risk.
“I can tell you glyphosate is safe. The data that they look at, they cherry pick it and then they interpret the studies completely different than research[ers] who actually did it,” Dr. Donna Farmer told CBS News.
Farmer studied glyphosate for more than 20 years at Monsanto. She claims people stricken with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma didn’t get it because of glyphosate.
Anthony Jackson McCall
Jack McCall owned and operated a farm for more than 40 years. While McCall avoided pesticides, he used Roundup® because Monsanto promoted it as safe. In September of 2015, doctors diagnosed him with an aggressive form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Immediately following the diagnosis, the McCalls stopped using Roundup® on their farm, but by then it was too late for Jack McCall. He died just a few months after doctors diagnosed him with an aggressive form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. According to the lawsuit, three years before McCall’s death, the family dog Duke also died of lymphoma after playing in areas sprayed with Roundup®.
Yolanda Mendoza used a backpack sprayer filled with Roundup® once a week on her one-acre property, CBS News reported. She fought for her life for several months after doctors diagnosed her with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. She filed a lawsuit against Monsanto for failing to warn of the risk.
“I want to make people aware of what it is that they’re spraying,” Mendoza told CBS News. “I don’t want them to go through what I went through. And what I’m still going through.”
California resident John Sanders used Roundup® for more than 30 years on orange and grapefruit groves, The Intercept reported. He worked as a ranch hand and then as a farm worker. He sprayed Roundup® year-round to control weeds. He filed suit against Monsanto in 2016 after developing non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Monsanto Sued for Roundup® Fraud
For years, Monsanto advertised Roundup® as safe and effective. One of the ads claimed claimed, “Roundup can be used where kids and pets’ll play and breaks down into natural material.”
In 1996, the New York Attorney General filed suit against Monsanto for false advertising and misleading farmers and agricultural workers. The attorney general said Monsanto’s advertising falsely claimed Roundup® was “safe and will not cause any harmful effects to people of the environment” and was “less toxic than certain common household products.”
Monsanto denied any wrongdoing, but agreed to stop advertising the herbicide’s safety in New York. But, they continue to do so in other states.