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Industrial chemical marketed for use on kids with autism

January 18th, 2010

Created for use in mining, compound now sold as dietary supplement

Parents desperate to treat autism in their children are turning to an industrial chemical that has not been proven safe or effective for use in humans, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Called OSR#1, the substance is being marketed as a dietary supplement by Boyd Haley, a retired professor who was once chairman of the chemistry department at the University of Kentucky. Haley said the chemical, which is used to pull heavy metals from polluted soil, is a “food” that is “totally without toxicity.”

Sources at the Food and Drug Administration told the Tribune that Haley had not submitted sufficient information for the substance to be evaluated for safety. Experts expressed concern that children were consuming a chemical that had not been formally evaluated for safety.

The report on OSR#1 is the latest in a series of Tribune articles documenting unproven and potentially harmful “therapies” that are being given to children with autism. Earlier post here.

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