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Cocktail of drugs including antidepressants is polluting our rivers and streams: Insects are passing the chemicals to larger predators such as fish and platypus

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Daily Mail
November 7, 2018

Insects that live near streams are being poisoned by a cocktail drugs and medicines including antibiotics and antidepressants, reveals new research.

The dangerous chemicals are passed down the food chain when the contaminated insects are eaten by predators, such as trout and platypus.

Many of the insects examined contained pharmaceutical chemicals at concentrations that may threaten the lives of animals that feed on them.

Study co-author Dr Emma Rosi, an expert at Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in the United States, said: ‘Stream life is swimming in a mixture of pharmaceuticals.

‘Our study is the first to show that this chronic drug pollution can concentrate in aquatic insects and move up food webs, in some cases exposing top predators to therapeutically-relevant doses.’

An international team of researchers sampled six streams in Melbourne, Australia, for 98 pharmaceutical compounds.

They measured for common drugs such as antibiotics, antidepressants, antihistamines, and NSAIDs.

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This article was posted: Wednesday, November 7, 2018 at 7:41 am

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