Friday, 20 April 2012

Green-Glowing Fish Provides New Insights Into Health Impacts of Pollution



ScienceDaily (Apr. 18, 2012) — Understanding the damage that pollution causes to both wildlife and human health is set to become much easier thanks to a new green-glowing zebrafish.

Created by a team from the University of Exeter, the fish makes it easier than ever before to see where in the body environmental chemicals act and how they affect health.

The fluorescent fish has shown that estrogenic chemicals, which are already linked to reproductive problems, impact on more parts of the body than previously thought.

The research by the University of Exeter and UCL (University College London) is published in the journalEnvironmental Health Perspectives.

Numerous studies have linked 'endocrine-disrupting' chemicals, used in a wide range of industrial products and contraceptive pharmaceuticals, to reproductive problems in wildlife and humans. Previous University of Exeter research identified the potential for a major group of 'these chemicals to cause male fish to change gender. Human exposure to these chemicals, which can alter hormone signalling in the body, has been associated with decreases in sperm count and other health problems, including breast and testicular cancer.



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