Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) is a cluster of blood cancers that begins in the white blood cells and affects the lymph system. The lymph system helps fight infection, disease, and allows fluids to move throughout the body.
NHL is most often diagnosed in older patients, but children can also develop NHL. Non-Hodgkin lymphoma typically originates wherever lymph tissue is found, including:
Certain DNA changes can cause normal lymphocytes to become lymphoma cells. These changes are usually acquired during life rather than inherited, and can result from exposure to radiation, infections, or cancer-causing chemicals. According to a 2019 study conducted by researchers at the University of Washington, glyphosate (the main ingredient in the herbicide Roundup)
Using data related to patients with the highest exposure to glyphosate, researchers concluded that a “compelling link” exists between glyphosate exposure and the risk of developing non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The 2019 study also mentions that researchers were “convinced” about the carcinogenic properties of the chemical. Bayer, parent company of Monsanto, and maker of Roundup, called the study a flawed “statistical manipulation” without incorporating no scientifically valid evidence.
People exposed to glyphosate beg to differ. More than 13,000 cancer patients and their families have filed lawsuits against Monsanto alleging that the company knew of the potential dangers associated with glyphosate exposure and failed to warn consumers. Three of the lawsuits have already resulted in large damage awards for injured plaintiffs.