gavelNews came late last week of a couple of lawsuits you’ll want to keep an eye on.

First, the IAOMT and others have filed suit against the FDA for failing to protect the public’s health against mercury exposure from dental amalgam. Noting that the US government is the largest single user of dental amalgam, Dr. Bicuspid reports that

The plaintiffs claim the FDA has failed to respond within a reasonable time to petitions calling for either a formal ban of dental amalgam use, or placement in the FDA’s class III, which requires additional restrictions for vulnerable individuals, more stringent proof of safety, an environmental impact statement.

The suit claims that U.S.consumers and dental professionals are being misled by the ADA, a powerful advocate for continued amalgam use.

The suit states that scientists have repeatedly warned the FDA of the risks caused by dental amalgam, and cited a study that found that children are particularly at risk for mercury poisoning.

“We have banned mercury in disinfectants, thermometers, and many other consumer products,” said Griffin Cole, DDS, President of the IAOMT. “There is no magic formula that makes mercury safe when it’s put into our mouths. It’s inexcusable to use mercury in dental fillings when there are much safer alternatives.”

Second, Reuters reports that the EPA is being sued by three environmental and public health groups “to move forward with rules that would require public disclosure of certain pesticide ingredients.”

The groups claimed there has been an “unreasonable delay” on the EPA’s part in finalizing rules to require chemical manufacturers to disclose hazardous inert ingredients in their pesticide products.

The groups said there are more than 350 inert pesticide ingredients that can be just as hazardous as active ingredients that are labeled and can comprise up to 99 percent of a pesticide’s formulation. Of the common inert ingredients, many are classified as carcinogenic, possibly carcinogenic or potentially toxic, the lawsuit said.

More than 20 public health groups and a coalition of state attorneys general petitioned EPA in 2006 to take action on this issue. EPA said in 2009 that it was starting the rule-making process regarding disclosures of such ingredients.

But the lawsuit claimed that since 2009 EPA has taken no further action to adopt any new rules on disclosure of inert ingredients.

Stay tuned for further details…

UPDATE: Not long after posting earlier today, we learned of a third suit – this one being filed by a few consumer groups against FDA over mercury in seafood. Details here.

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