Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 93, Issue 1, pp 21–25 | Cite as

The Effects of Aerial Spraying with Bacillus thuringiensis Kurstaki on Children with Asthma

  • Marty Pearce
  • Brian Habbick
  • Janice Williams
  • Margaret Eastman
  • Maureen Newman



To determine if aerially spraying a biological pesticide was associated with an increase in the symptoms or change in the Peak Expiratory Flow Rate of children with asthma.


A pre/post matched pairs cohort design was used. Children living in the spray zone were matched with children outside of the spray zone. Peak Expiratory Flow Rates, asthma symptoms and non-asthma symptoms were recorded in diaries.


There were no differences in asthma symptom scores between subjects and controls, neither before nor after the spray; nor were there significant changes in Peak Expiratory Flow Rates for subjects after the spray period.


No evidence of adverse effects from the use of the biological pesticide was found. We believe that this is the first paper to address the issue of whether or not aerial spraying with Btk has a harmful effect on children with asthma.



Nous avons cherché à déterminer si l’épandage aérien d’un pesticide biologique était associé à une hausse des symptômes ou à un changement du débit maximal expiratoire chez les enfants asthmatiques.


Au moyen de cohortes avant-après en paires appariées, nous avons comparé des enfants vivant dans la zone d’épandage à des enfants vivant hors de la zone et consigné par écrit leurs débits maximaux expiratoires et leurs symptômes asthmatiques et non asthmatiques.


Les cas et les témoins ont obtenu les mêmes scores en ce qui a trait aux symptômes de l’asthme avant et après l’épandage; nous n’avons pas non plus constaté de changements importants dans le débit maximal expiratoire des cas après l’épandage.


Nous n’avons relevé aucune preuve d’effets indésirables de l’emploi du pesticide biologique Btk. Selon nous, cette étude est la première sur d’éventuels effets néfastes, pour les enfants asthmatiques, de l’épandage aérien au Btk.


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Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marty Pearce
    • 1
    • 3
  • Brian Habbick
    • 2
  • Janice Williams
    • 1
  • Margaret Eastman
    • 1
  • Maureen Newman
    • 1
  1. 1.Capital Health RegionVictoriaCanada
  2. 2.University of SaskatchewanSaskatoonCanada
  3. 3.Capital Health RegionVictoriaCanada

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