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Treated Clothing Detoxifies Pesticides

fragments will be washed away during the regular laundry process and, along with that, the active sites will be regenerated by the bleach," says Ko.

In laboratory tests, treated textiles took less than five minutes to degrade some carbamate pesticides by as much as 99%. Ko cautions, however, that this treatment has not been tested against organophosphorus pesticides, which account for a large portion of currently used pesticides.

Both carbamate and organophosphorus pesticides are used on a wide variety of field crops, such as corn and cotton, as well as on fruits vegetables. In 1995, the University of California says use of the carbamates aldicarb and methomyl in that state were most often on cotton and lettuce respectively. The organophosphorus pesticide malathion was most commonly used on alfalfa and strawberries.

Interestingly, the same chlorine-armed halamine compound that works against carbamate pesticides also seems to work as an antibacterial agent. The process to create the protective clothing has been patented and the technology purchased by Halosource Corporation of Seattle, Washington. This research was funded, in part, by the National Science Foundation.


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Contact: Charmayne Marsh
y_marsh@acs.org
202-872-4445
American Chemical Society
23-Mar-1999


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