Veterinary drugs tied to obesity
Veterinary antibiotics ingested by humans in the form of tainted food and drinking water have been linked to childhood obesity by researchers at Shanghaibased Fudan University.
The discovery, recently published in the United States scientific journal Environment International, came as a result of five years of study by a team working at the university’s Education Ministry-designated public health security laboratory and its College of Public Health.
“We believe that the veterinary antibiotics mainly enter the human body through contaminated water and food,” said Wang Hexing, one of the team’s lead researchers.
Sun Guogen, an information officer at Fudan University’s College of Public Health, reiterated that the research found no association between obesity and the antibiotics designed for human use.
According to Wang, the amount of antibiotics used in China reached 162,000 tons in 2013, accounting for roughly half of global consumption. Around 52 percent is used for veterinary purposes and more than 50,000 tons are discharged into the environment through the soil and water, he said.