Research Projects



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Currentright arrow Completedright arrow

Interventions to reduce pesticide exposure and associated ill health in pesticide exposed workers and family members

Pesticide exposure has been associated with a range of serious long term health effects, including neurodegenerative conditions and cancer.

A recent study conducted by the Centre for Public Health Research showed that pesticide users’ urinary concentrations of pesticides and their metabolites were considerably higher than those of the general population, illustrating the need for improvements in exposure controls for New Zealand pesticide applicators.

This cluster randomized controlled trial in 200 pesticide users aims to identify effective intervention strategies to reduce pesticide exposure. We will measure pesticide exposure levels before and after interventions that will be co-designed to reduce applicators’ exposure to pesticides. We will also determine the effect of these interventions on a range of biomarkers and health parameters.

Based on our findings, worker-friendly information and educational materials will be developed including concrete, practical and easy to understand guidelines to reduce exposure to pesticides.


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't Mannetje A. Cancer agents at work. Safeguard, 2020; March/April: 22-23. link icon

October 2017


  • Professor Chris Cunningham
  • Massey University, NZ
  • Professor Hans Kromhout
  • Utrecht University, Netherlands
  • Professor Tony LaMontagne
  • Deakin University, Australia
  • Professor Jochen Mueller
  • Queensland University, Australia
  • Professor Janet Leathem
  • Massey University, NZ
  • Professor David Fishwick
  • University of Sheffield, UK
  • Professor Martie van Tongeren
  • University of Manchester, UK
  • Dr Aaron Blair
  • National Cancer Institute, USA


  • Health Research Council of New Zealand