News of the WeekPUBLIC HEALTH

A Mold's Toxic Legacy Revisited

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Science  14 Apr 2000:
Vol. 288, Issue 5464, pp. 243-244
DOI: 10.1126/science.288.5464.243a

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In 1995, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta set off a cascade of alarms when an agency task force linked certain toxin-producing molds to a cluster of cases of sometimes fatal lung bleeding, or pulmonary hemorrhage, in infants. But last month, the CDC published the findings of two expert panels that identified what they called "serious shortcomings" in the initial investigation and concluded that "a possible association between acute pulmonary hemorrhage ... and [mold] exposure ... was not proven." The reexamination is already stirring debate.