Drugs make fish ag­gres­sive

Down to Earth - - SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY -

Pre­scrip­tion drugs people take end up in rivers and es­tu­ar­ies with­out fully break­ing down. It has been found that the pres­ence of such drugs, even in mi­nus­cule amounts, in wa­ter bod­ies has a dras­tic im­pact on ma­rine an­i­mals. Fish ex­posed to vary­ing lev­els of flu­ox­e­tine, a com­mon an­tide­pres­sant, for four weeks ex­hib­ited ag­gres­sion to­wards fe­males, in­jur­ing them. At the high­est lev­els of con­cen­tra­tion of the drug, the sur­vival rate of fe­males was 77 per cent to 87.5 per cent, and the fish which died had bruises and tis­sue dam­age. How­ever, the be­havioural change is re­versible and the tests are not ap­pli­ca­ble to hu­mans. Aquat­icTox­i­col­ogy,June2014

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