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If I understand the presentation referenced by by Gaianne below correctly, Uranium is uniquely genotoxic because of the manner it is absorbed by the body and the degree to which it absorbs external radiation - proportionate to the fourth power of its atomic number - and concentrates it in very vulnerable parts of the body.

This has nothing to do with marginal increases in background radiation due to Uranium dust dispersal and everything to do with how even tiny concentrations of DU absorbed by the body amplify the absorption of external gamma radiation out of all proportion to its own (relatively low) level of radioactivity.

It seems to me this is a very specialised field of research and which should be careful about overgeneralising from related fields. According to the Video, the chief radiation advisor to the WHO was sacked for raising the issue, and so it may not be an entirely politics free area of research either.

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Mar 31st, 2011 at 09:34:57 AM EST
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