One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Chronic poisoning by alkyl mercury compounds from industrial waste, characterized by (usually permanent) impairment of brain functions such as speech, sight, and muscular coordination.
- ‘Toxicity via the food chain has been observed with organic mercury, as in Minamata disease.’
- ‘Thus in many ways Japan has become the canary in the coal mine for the developed world, as witness Minamata disease.’
- ‘The author compares the first two of the three responses to the Minamata disease.’
- ‘In chapter 9, fetal Minamata disease is examined, and the effects of intrauterine methyl mercury are described.’
1950s: named after Minamata, a town in Japan.
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