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Health authorities to probe rural birth-defect mystery

Image: Maessive [CC BY-ND 2.0], via Flickr

France’s national public health agency has launched an investigation into why babies have been born with deformed arms in the Ain area, adding 11 cases to seven it had already investigated.

In an interview on the radio station RTL on 31 October, François Bourdillon, head of Santé Publique France, said that the investigation would look at similar cases across France and present initial conclusions to the government in the following three months.

The announcement came the day after the agency published a statement saying it had unearthed 11 cases of arm malformations in children born in the rural Ain region close to the Swiss border between 2000 and 2014.

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