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ENGLEMED HEALTH NEWS - 20/1/09

New water threat to fertility

Tuesday January 20th, 2009

Alarming new evidence suggests new threats to human fertility in water pollution.

Scientists say they have discovered a new range of chemicals that may damage male fertility.

There has been growing alarm about chemicals that are similar to female hormones finding their way into the water systems and changing the sex of some fish.

Now British scientists say they have identified chemicals that block male hormones and could block male fertility.

The chemicals are found in cancer treatments, other drugs and agricultural pesticides, the researchers report in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

Researcher Dr Susan Jobling, of Brunel University, Middlesex, UK, said: "The new research findings illustrate the complexities in unravelling chemical causation of adverse health effects in wildlife populations and re-open the possibility of a human – wildlife connection in which effects seen in wild fish and in humans are caused by similar combinations of chemicals.

"We have identified a new group of chemicals in our study on fish, but do not know where they are coming from. A principal aim of our work is now to identify the source of these pollutants and work with regulators and relevant industry to test the effects of a mixture of these chemicals and the already known environmental estrogens and help protect environmental health."

Fellow researcher Professor Charles Tyler, of the University of Exeter, UK, said: "Our research shows that a much wider range of chemicals than we previously thought is leading to hormone disruption in fish. This means that the pollutants causing these problems are likely to be coming from a wide variety of sources."

Tags: Childbirth and Pregnancy | General Health | Menís Health | UK News

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