ALS Rate in Miners Exposed to McIntyre Powder Causing Concern

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by Wendy Henderson |

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Between 1943 and 1979, miners around the world were encouraged (and in some cases forced) to inhale aluminum dust called McIntyre Powder, believing that the substance would help protect their lungs. However, a health agency in Ontario has found an alarming link between McIntyre Powder and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

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According to a report on CBC News, the Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers (OHCOW)  conducted a study of 300 miners who worked in mines in Northern Ontario. Researchers found that seven of the 300 miners have ALS — a high number considering the prevalence in the general population is two per 100,000 people.

The health organization has teamed up with Janice Martell who is investigating other possible neurological health conditions linked to the exposure of McIntyre Powder including Parkinson’s disease in Ontario.

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