Immunoassays to Detect Environmental Contaminants
Pesticides are by design, biologically active agents that are deliberately added to the environment to control plant or animal pests (Murphy 1986). Pesticides can be classified as being either “chemical” or “biological” in nature. Early chemical insecticides included inorganic materials such as sulfur, arsenic, and mercury. These were followed by several naturally occurring materials such as pyrethrum and rotenone. DDT came upon the scene in the 1940s and was the first widely used synthetic chemical pesticide. The environmental damage caused by this and other chlorinated hydrocarbon pesticides highlighted by Rachel Carsons book Silent Spring (Carson 1962; Marco 1987) resulted in the gradual phasing out of these compounds and spurned the development of alternative chemical pesticides. Table 1 lists the broad general classes of chemical pesticides and herbicides and representative examples of each.
KeywordsArsenic Bacillus Styrene Toxicology Carbamate
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