The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary







Rotenone (CAS number 83-79-4) is a colorless-to-red, odorless solid. In solution it is used as a broad-spectrum insecticide that works by inhibiting the transport of electrons in the respiration pathway. It is commonly used in powdered form to treat parasitic mites on chickens and other fowl.

It also kills fish and is used to eradicate exotic fish from their non-native habitats. It is toxic to humans and other mammals. However, it breaks down when exposed to sunlight and has a short lifetime (a week or less) in the environment.

Rotenone is produced by extraction from the roots, seeds, and leaves of certain tropical legumes.

Rotenone and Parkinson's Disease

Research has shown a correlation between intravenous rotenone and Parkinson's Disease, in rats. The study does not suggest that rotenone exposure is responsible for Parkinson's Disease in humans, but is consistent with the belief that chronic exposure to environmental toxins can increase the likelihood of the disease.

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Last updated: 05-23-2005 13:48:42