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The group of organophosphates (OPs) pesticides is considered the most used chemical group in pest management. It was discovered in the 1930s and the compounds were developed to pesticide in the 1940s. Moreover, organophosphates utilized as chemical warfare during World War II. Organophosphates are the main source of certain nematicides, insecticides, fungicides, herbicides, and nerve agents. However, organophosphates pesticides proved its highly performance against different pests in agriculture and public health fields.
OPs are also one of the two major classes of cholinesterase-inhibiting pesticide. The toxicological action of the OPs is arising from inhibition of the enzyme acetylcholinesterase (AChE) which is terminates the action of acetylcholine neurotransmitter, that released by nerve stimulation, on postsynaptic cholinergic receptors in the nervous system. The inhibition of the enzyme (AChE ) causing accumulation of acetylcholine and this operation called phosphorylation. OPs produce an irreversible inhibition of acetylcholinesterase, in contrast to the carbamates (the second major class) that produce a reversible inhibition.
Because of the irresponsible and repeated usage of OPs in our life several adverse effects occurs. One of the dangerous impacts as result of acute exposure to some OPs is inducing the delayed neurotoxicity (OPIDN) in nerve of humans and animals. In USA, organophosphates are listed as a high toxic substances by one dose to bees, humans and wildlife by EPA.
Hundreds of reports during the last 30 years mentioned that OPs groups have mutagenic, teratogenic and carcinogenic effects on mammals. Exposure to organophosphate pesticides is linked to a number of health problems. Some studies found that exposure to organophosphate pesticides are linked with Leukemia and Lymphoma diseases. Moreover, many reports showed that organophosphate pesticides such as chlorpyrifos and diazinon augmented the probability of Parkinson’s disease.
Also, OPs have adverse effects on human reproductive system and reduce male fertility. The presence of OP metabolites in body reduce the levels of sex hormones as testosterone. While, recent studies revealed that organophosphates overlapped with healthy neurodevelopment, which leading to behavioral problems and lower cognitive abilities especially childrens. There are scientific evidence that some OPs pesticides reduce the ability of immune system of human and animals which reflect on diseases infection resistance.
Integrated pest management (IPM), integrated crop management (ICM) and sustainable agriculture are the suitable options to farmers as partially solution to pesticides problems. Nowadays, new groups are recommended to pest management as alternative tools to OPs. The world need to re-evaluate his options and situations towards the usage of chemical pesticides especially OPs group which still use till this moment.