Recently, on the internet RADSAFE mailing list
and elsewhere, the issue of the increased congenital malformation rates from exposure to depleted uranium and the effect it may have had on military recruiting has arisen.
If you know anyone who has avoided military service because of the threat of increased incidents of birth defects later in life, please post a description of the situation. Thank you.
Kang H, Magee C, Mahan C, Lee K, Murphy F, Jackson L, Matanoski G. (2001) "Pregnancy outcomes among U.S. Gulf War veterans: a population-based survey of 30,000 veterans." Annals of Epidemiology, vol. 11, pp. 504-11: Abstract: "Both men and women deployed to the Gulf theater reported significant excesses of birth defects among their liveborn infants. These excess rates also extended to the subset of 'moderate to severe' birth defects [males: OR= 1.78 (CI = 1.19-2.66); females: OR = 2.80 (CI = 1.26-6.25)]." Note that the effect in females is larger.
Arfsten, D.P.; K.R. Still; G.D. Ritchie (2001) "A review of the effects of uranium and depleted uranium exposure on reproduction and fetal development," Toxicology and Industrial Health, vol. 17, pp. 180-91. Summary contains: "A number of studies have shown that natural uranium is a reproductive toxicant...."
Hindin, R.; D. Brugge; B. Panikkar (2005) "Teratogenicity of depleted uranium aerosols: A review from an epidemiological perspective," Environmental Health, vol. 4, pp. 17. "Conclusion: In aggregate the human epidemiological evidence is consistent with increased risk of birth defects in offspring of persons exposed to DU."
Domingo, J.L. (2001) "Reproductive and developmental toxicity of natural and depleted uranium: a review," Reproductive Toxicology, vol. 15, pp. 603-9. Abstract: "Decreased fertility, embryo/fetal toxicity including teratogenicity, and reduced growth of the offspring have been observed following uranium exposure at different gestation periods."
Durakovic A. (1999) "Medical effects of internal contamination with uranium," Croatian Medical Journal, vol. 40, pp. 49-66. Abstract: "well documented evidence of reproductive and developmental toxicity...."
McDiarmid, M.A., et al. (2006) "Biological monitoring and surveillance results of Gulf War I veterans exposed to depleted uranium," International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, vol. 79, pp. 11-21. Abstract: "genotoxicity measures continue to show subtle, mixed results...."
Schröder, H.; A. Heimers; R. Frentzel-Beyme; A. Schott; W. Hoffmann (2003) "Chromosome aberration analysis in peripheral lymphocytes of Gulf war and Balkans war veterans," Radiation Protection Dosimetry, vol. 103, pp. 211-220. Abstract: "there was a statistically significant increase in the frequency of dicentric chromosomes (dic) and centric ring chromosomes (cR) in the veterans. group...."
Miller, A.C.; M. Stewart; K. Brooks; L. Shi; N. Page (2003) "Depleted uranium-catalyzed oxidative DNA damage: absence of significant alpha particle decay," Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry, vol. 91, pp. 246-252. Abstract: "chemical generation of hydroxyl radicals by depleted uranium in vitro exceeds radiolytic generation by one million-fold...."
Briner, W. and J. Murray (2005) "Effects of short-term and long-term depleted uranium exposure on open-field behavior and brain lipid oxidation in rats," Neurotoxicology and Teratology, vol. 27, pp. 135-44. Abstract: "DU is a toxin that crosses the blood-brain barrier, producing behavioral changes in male rats and lipid oxidation regardless of gender in as little as 2 weeks...."
Monleau, M.; C. Bussy; P. Lestaevel; P. Houpert; F. Paquet; V. Chazel (2005) "Bioaccumulation and behavioural effects of depleted uranium in rats exposed to repeated inhalations," Neuroscience Letters, vol. 390, pp. 31-6. Abstract: "depleted uranium is able to enter the brain after exposure to repeated inhalation, producing behavioral changes."
Salbu, B.; Janssens, K.; Lind, O.C.; Proost, K.; Gijsels, L., Danesic, P.R. (2005) "Oxidation states of uranium in depleted uranium particles from Kuwait." Journal of Environmental Radioactivity, 78, 125-135. Abstract: "Environmental or health impact assessments for ... DU munitions should ... take into account the presence of respiratory UO3...."