Researchers Link Iraq Dust With Some Vets’ Lung Problems

IRAQ BURN PITS

(MILITARY TIMES)   Researchers at Stony Brook University in New York have coined the term “Iraq-Afghanistan war lung injury” to describe respiratory symptoms developed by some veterans — and they have duplicated the problem in mice, using dust from Camp Victory in Baghdad.

In an article published Friday in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, researchers including Dr. Anthony Szema, an allergist and assistant professor of medicine at Stony Brook, found that exposing mice to dust collected from Camp Victory in 2007 produced inflammation and changes to respiratory airways similar to those found in Iraq veterans diagnosed with constrictive bronchiolitis.

The mice lungs contained “angular, sharp and solid” particles with traces of titanium and iron, according to the study.

Replicating the experiment with dust from other locations, including the San Joaquin Valley in California; Kandahar, Afghanistan; and a titanium mine in Montana, the researchers could not produce the same inflammatory response.

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