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J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2009;72(23):1550-2. doi: 10.1080/15287390903129358.

Mortality follow-up of veterans who participated in military chemical and biological warfare agent testing between 1962 and 1972.

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  • 1Department of Veterans Affairs, Environmental Epidemiology Service, Washington, DC 20420, USA.


Between 1962 and 1972, several thousand U.S. Navy personnel participated in Project SHAD (Shipboard Hazard and Defense). These tests potentially exposed participants to either active chemical or biological warfare agents or their simulants. This study examined mortality risk associated with participating in SHAD tests by comparing the cause-specific mortality of 4927 SHAD veterans to that of 10,927 other Navy veterans. Compared to other Navy veterans, SHAD veterans had an increased risk of overall mortality, which was due primarily to heart disease deaths.

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