News of the WeekENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH

National Tracking Plan Picks Up Speed

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Science  19 Apr 2002:
Vol. 296, Issue 5567, pp. 452-453
DOI: 10.1126/science.296.5567.452

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Summary

Parkinson's disease, autism, childhood leukemia, lupus, asthma: They are all chronic diseases caused by multiple factors--including, some suspect, environmental pollutants. Now an ambitious, $200-million-plus-per-year national plan to ferret out such disease links is gaining momentum among agencies and Congress. At a public meeting last week in Washington, D.C., the proposal met with enthusiastic support, although a few participants voiced caveats--such as the need to define environment broadly to include lifestyle factors as well as chemicals.