NTP is conducting a series of laboratory studies utilizing a battery of in vitro and in vivo screening assays to evaluate glyphosate and glyphosate formulations. NTP will also test (aminomethyl)phosphonic acid, a metabolite of glyphosate that is produced by bacteria present in the soil and the mammalian gastrointestinal tract. The studies will investigate whether these chemicals can cause genotoxicity, or damage to DNA, and induce oxidative stress, which occurs when damage from free radicals exceeds cellular defense mechanisms. Both genotoxicity and the ability to induce oxidative stress are considered to be key characteristics of chemical carcinogens. NTP will also examine whether glyphosate and glyphosate formulations can affect gene expression. These studies will help us better understand any potential effects that might lead to cancer and at what concentrations those effects might occur.
In addition, NTP is screening the published scientific literature using text mining and machine-learning approaches to identify the types of health outcomes, other than cancer, that have been associated with exposure to glyphosate and glyphosate formulations. The outcome of this analysis will help inform NTP about whether additional research is needed.