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Technopathogenology

Technology and Non-Evident Risk – A Contribution to Prevention

Guillermo Miguel Eguiazu and Alberto Motta

This book deals with the prevention of potential non-evident risks on human health associated with technology which encloses the general knowledge of developing processes used to achieve either goods or services. The voids in technological knowledge used in the development of new technologies are responsible for hidden defects in the same. The authors suggest that hidden defects in technologies are accountable for hazards in generations of environmental factors that they call technopathogens. These factors can cause adverse effects to human health which are expressed not immediately but over years or even generations. This phenomenon is defined as technopathogeny. Since technopathogeny cannot be framed within existing disciplines related to the phenomenon such as risk assessment, risk management, technology assessment, technological genesis, environmental impact assessment, life cycle assessment or ecology, the authors coin a new term for this specific discipline called Technopathogenology.

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CHAPTER I – Technopathogeny – The Phenomenon

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CHAPTER I Technopathogeny – The Phenomenon ‘From the price of progress to the priceless progress’ I. The discovery of a phenomenon still undescribed More than three decades ago we began our research having as leitmotiv the protection of human health from non-evident and non-acceptable technological risk. This beginning led to learning about a new phenome- non. Upon realising its relevance, magnitude and scope, in 1984 we created a specific program: Programa de Investigación Calidad Biológica y Biopatológica del Entorno Humano (PROCABIE) (Biological and Biopathological Quality of Human Environment Research Program) (Eguiazu & Motta, 1991). This program was originally called Programa de Investigación de la Calidad Biológica y Ecotoxicológica del Entorno Humano (Biological and Ecotoxicological Quality of Human Environ- ment Research Program) since the concept of biopathological – which we would later use and whose fundamentals we will explain when we re- fer to the characteristics of neoplastic disease – was still not understood. The concept of biopathological is more precise and goes beyond the idea of ecotoxicological, which is, in turn, related to Ecology. The scientific fundamentals of the program were outlined in 1985, at the 12th Argentine Symposium on Mycology (San Luis, Argentina, Oc- tober 9th to 12th). They were presented in a paper which dealt with the origin and prophylaxis of mycotoxins and their connection with the technological modification of primeval grain. These fundamentals were later consolidated in 1988 in the International Congress of Toxicology (Buenos Aires, April 11th to 15th) in a paper dealing with...

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