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a moderately toxic chlorinated hydrocarbon pesticide, formerly widely used but now banned in the United States except for a few specialized purposes because its extremely long half-life causes ecological damage.
A contact insecticide, C14H9Cl5, occurring as colorless crystals or a whitish powder, toxic to humans and animals when swallowed or absorbed through the skin. Most uses have been banned in the United States since 1972.
DDT A gene on chromosome 22q11.23 that encodes an enzyme belonging to the MIF family which converts D-dopachrome into 5,6-dihydroxyindole.
DDT Dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane Environment A highly hepatotoxic and potentially neurotoxic insecticide that accumulates in fat; DDT is non-biodegradable and concentrates up the food chain. See Pesticide.
Abbreviation for dichloro-diphenyl- trichloroethane.
DDT Dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane. This highly effective insecticide kills flies, mosquitos, lice, butterflies, moths and beetles. The use of DDT has saved millions of human lives that would otherwise have been lost from MALARIA, YELLOW FEVER, TYPHUS, PLAGUE, river blindness (ONCHOCERCIASIS), DYSENTERY, SLEEPING SICKNESS and FILARIASIS. For ecological reasons it has now been largely replaced by organophosphorous insecticides such as Malathion, Parathion and Paraquat.
DDT abbrev. (d ichlorod iphenyl-t richloroethane) a chlorinated hydrocarbon which acts as a powerful insecticide with long-lasting effects. DDT was the first major insecticide in use. Although DDT is cheap to manufacture, its use has adverse ecological consequences. Its lack of biodegradability and the fact that it tends to accumulate in fatty tissues has resulted in its transfer from one consumer to another up the FOOD CHAIN becoming concentrated at each step. One effect of this has been to endanger the top carnivorous birds whose eggshells have become paper-thin because DDT has prevented the mobilization of calcium in the oviduct, so reducing the reproductive potential of many rare species. While these processes have been occurring the target insects have been subjected to strong SELECTION pressure from the DDT, with the result that highly resistant populations now exist, making the insecticide useless in many parts of the world.