Minamata disease: A disorder caused by methyl mercury poisoning that was first described in the inhabitants of Minamata Bay, Japan and resulted from their eating fish contaminated with mercury industrial waste. What has methylmercury in umbilical cords told us? Minamata is an industrial city on the Yatsushiro coast of Japan on the southernmost island (Kyushu). Although their title states “research implications,” the authors failed to convey some important caveats from the incident. USA.gov. The methylmercury accumulated in fish and was consumed by people eating the fish. Epub 2015 Aug 12. Severely affected children born with congenital Minamata disease are mental retarded and have disturbed coordination, deformities of the limbs, poor reflexes, poor nutrition and growth, and, in some cases, show other effects. The processes used inorganic mercury (mercuric oxide) as a catalyst. Exhausted by the outbreak of Minamata disease, the effect of the accelerated urban drift associated with high economic growth, and the subsequent decline of the regional economy, by September 2007, the population had also declined to 28,901 persons. Symptoms include ataxia, numbness in the hands and feet, general muscle weakness, narrowing of the field of vision and damage to hearing and speech. Their pet cats, which were also eating the fish, suffered similar symptoms. Minamata disease (M. d.) is methylmercury (MeHg) poisoning that occurred in humans who ingested fish and shellfish contaminated by MeHg discharged in waste water from a chemical plant (Chisso Co. Ltd.). A constant diet of contaminated food led to increasing amounts of methyl mercury accumulating in the bodies of the shellfish and small fish. NLM Then, we introduce the studies that were conducted mainly by Sakamoto et al. Some had difficulty hearing or seeing. Signs and symptoms include ataxia, numbness in the hands and feet, general muscle weakness, loss of peripheral vision, and damage to hearing and speech. 14. I have been working in Minamata as a medical doctor for about 30 years. Chapter - 4 Minamata disease. 2018;73(3):258-264. doi: 10.1265/jjh.73.258. Then, the local population of people that depended on fish were affected, particularly developing fetuses and children. Crossref, Google Scholar; Vogt RR, Nieuwland JA. Minamata is a small industrial town situated near the southwest coast of Kyushu, the most southerly of the three main islands of Japan. Characteristics of hand tremor and postural sway in patients with fetal-type Minamata disease. HHS Consequently it was readily absorbed by plankton and other organisms in the sea which were the food for shellfish and small fish. The Minamata Convention is named after the Japanese city of Minamata, which experienced a severe, decades-long incidence of mercury poisoning after industrial wastewater from a chemical factory was discharged into Minamata Bay.The wastewater contained methylmercury, which bioaccumulated in fish and shellfish in the bay. In addition, fetuses are exposed to methylmercury via the placenta from maternal fish consumption, and high-level exposure to methylmercury causes damage to the brains of infants. The beginnings of the carbide organic chemical complex III. NIH In Minamata City, major industrial activities except agriculture have been depressed since the official discovery of Minamata Disease, The growth in the fish catch, commercial sales, and industrial production has become poor compared with those of the entire prefecture. Stress Health doi: 10.1002/smi.1310. Inorganic mercury, although poisonous, might have been expected to disperse in the water, but it was mixed with other effluent and this sludge settled at the bottom of the bay. Into this bay flows the effluent from a large fertilizer factory. A second epidemic in Japan occurred in 1965 along the Agano River, Niigata Prefecture. The Minamata disaster has certainly been the most outstanding example recorded of the effects of industrial irresponsibility and will remain as a never to be forgotten lesson. I. Minamata disease is caused through the absorption of methyl mercury into the body through various environmental sources, primarily through seafood. In i960 methyl mercury was detected in seafood and in 1961 it was detected in sediments derived from the factory. It was stated that Minamata disease is the illness of the central nervous system caused by a methyl-mercury compound released into the aquatic environment as a by-product of acetaldehyde acetic acid. This site needs JavaScript to work properly. (2010) reviewed the scientific discoveries of health risks resulting from methylmercury exposure, including the history of the Minamata disease incident. Fish can concentrate methyl mercury to the extent of 10,000 to 100,000 times that in the surrounding water. The impaired development of fetal-type Minamata disease patients was one of the most tragic and characteristic feature of Minamata disease. This effluent was discharged into the waters of Minamata Bay. Through gills and gastrointestinal tracts, fishery products such as fish, shrimp, crabs, and shellfish, take in methylmercury discharged from chemical plants into rivers and seas. In 1956 the first case of what became known as Minamata disease was reported and then other people started to present themselves to doctors and at hospitals with various symptoms such as muscular incoordination and difficulties in speech. Methylmercury, the causative agent of Minamata disease, can easily penetrate the brain, and adult-type Minamata disease patients showed neurological symptoms according to the brain regions where the neurons, mainly in the cerebrum and cerebellum, were damaged. I'd like to talk about the tardive effects of methylmercury poisoning around Minamata. How mercury from a Japanese factory contaminated fish in Minamata Bay. as follows: 2) a retrospective study on temporal and regional variations of methylmercury pollution in Minamata area using preserved umbilical cord methylmercury, 3) decline in male sex ratio observed in Minamata area, 4) characteristics of hand tremor and postural sway in fetal-type Minamata disease patients, 5) methylmercury transfer from mothers to infants during gestation and lactation (the role of placenta), 6) extrapolation studies using rat models on the effects of prenatal methylmercury exposure on the human brain, and 7) risks and benefits of fish consumption. In the city there was a factory that manufactured the chemicals vinyl chloride (used to make the plastic PVC; see pp. Continue reading here: The teratogenic effects of methyl mercury, The All Natural Varicose and Spider Vein Solution, ELAY Emollient Intensive Skin Moisturizer, The teratogenic effects of methyl mercury, The attempted murder of Benvenuto Cellini, How DDT works and why it is toxic to insects but not mammals, Symptoms and detection of strychnine poisoning, Accumulation of chemicals in the food chain bioaccumulation and biomagnification, How paint stripper can cause carbon monoxide poisoning, Scientists Reverse Memory Loss in Alzheimers. That in the bodies of the Minamata City in Kumamoto Prefecture productivity the., tremors, dysarthria, ataxia, and thousands more experienced crippling injuries City hospital conducting... 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