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'Prozac pollution' making fish less aggressive, says study

Accepted submission by Anonymous Coward in the Ocean at 2019-11-30 17:05:27
Science []

Pharmaceutical pollution in waterways is having a "disturbing impact" on fish, according to new research. Although the behaviour of solitary fish is not altered, it does appear to have an effect on fish in a group.

Psychoactive drugs - including antidepressants - are altering the reproductive behaviour, anxiety levels, and anti-predator responses of fish in the wild, according to Australia's Monash University.

According to the research, Prozac didn't change the feeding and foraging behaviour of solitary fish, however when it was applied to whole groups of fish it had a suppressive effect.

Last year, another study covering the impact of Prozac pollution on fish said it could last for three generations, blunting the stress responses in exposed embryos and any of that embryo's descendants once it had matured.

The study, from the University of Ottowa, showed how zebrafish didn't explore their tank as much when they were treated with Prozac.

Dr Vance Trudeau, a neuroendocrinologist, said there were good reasons to believe the effects that his study revealed could also occur in humans.

This is because the core stress hormone cortisone has the same impact in fish as it does on humans.

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