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Global warming behind spread of diseases: Scientist

Written by: Staff
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Lucknow, Mar 17 (UNI) Global warming due to the increased emission of greenhouse gases is one of the major factors behind the spread of several life threatening diseases, according to a top Indian scientist.

''In the last 2,100 years, the average earth temperature has gone up by 0.6 per cent. Although, the rise appears miniscule, it has caused extensive damage vis-a-vis out health,'' Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), Director General, Nirmal Kumar Ganguly said here.

Due to global warming, mosquitoes will breed in countries, which are free of the malaise today -- resulting in the spread of malaria, filaria, dengue and Japanese Encephalitis (JE), he claimed.

''Tsunami is just a trailer of the catastrophe, which may happen in the future,'' he reminded and referred to JE, that claimed over 1,000 lives in Uttar Pradesh last year.

Migratory birds also play a major role in spreading infectious diseases across boundaries.

Prof Ganguly also blamed increasing dense human localities in cities and water scarcity for ailments.

''Stored water may give opportunity to diseases like dengue to spread in the metros...Delhi is one example, where it is creating havoc every year,'' he claimed.

According to Prof Ganguly scientists are now utilising satellite imaging to ascertain water logged areas for controlling the mosquito menace.

Further, he stressed that foolproof strategies be planned to control mosquito, not only in urban areas but also in the rural hinterland.

However, Prof Ganguly maintained that India had adopted adequate safety measures, which recently resulted in the successful control on SARS -- a disease which originated from China.

The ICMR DG was here for the C R Krishnamurthy Memorial Oration organised by Society of Biological Chemists at the Central Drug Research Institute (CDRI), Lucknow.

Commenting on use of insecticides, he said Indosulphan, a well known insecticide, was sprayed in North Kerala, which not only killed insects/pests, but it also caused blood cancer to 300 people.

patients due to it.

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