Jump to main content
United States Environmental Protection Agency
Laws & Regulations
Health & Environmental Research Online (HERO)
Export to File
This record has one attached file:
Add More Files
Display Name for File*:
Do carbamates cause polyneuropathy?
Lotti, M; Moretto, A
Is Peer Reviewed?
Muscle and Nerve
Web of Science Id
Carbamates are reversible inhibitors of acetylcholinesterase, and some also inhibit neuropathy target esterase (NTE), the target in organophosphate-induced delayed polyneuropathy. However, based on mechanistic considerations, these carbamates were thought to be unable to initiate polyneuropathy. Consequently, clinical reports of polyneuropathy associated with carbamate exposures have been disregarded. We discuss three cases of polyneuropathy that occurred after severe poisoning by methylcarbamates. In addition, high repeated doses of phenyl N-methyl N-benzylcarbamate caused nearly 100% NTE inhibition and polyneuropathy in the hen model. These data suggest the need to reconsider the long-standing tenet that carbamates cannot cause polyneuropathy. Alternatively, a preexisting subclinical neuropathy in these individuals may have been amplified by carbamates, as observed in animal models. We suggest that individuals with underlying neuropathy (e.g., diabetics) who are poisoned by carbamates should be followed closely. In addition, procedures for the current risk assessment of carbamate pesticides may need to be reconsidered.
carbamates; cholinergic; peripheral neuropathy; pesticides; poisoning
Learn about HERO
Projects in HERO
Transparency & Integrity