Surprisingly, metformin can also be found in freshwater system. What is more, researchers said that the drug can change the sex of fish, Pravda.Ru reports. The number of prescriptions for the medication that treats diabetes has been growing along with the rate of the blood sugar disorder in the United States. Metformin is used as a one of the most common medication to cure Type II diabetes.
Rebecca Klaper, a researcher at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, has been looking to the drug's prevalence in watersheds, as well as exploring its potential effects on wildlife.
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"It is the chemical we found in almost every sample and in the highest concentrations compared to other emerging contaminants -- even higher than caffeine," she said in a recent press release.
Fish expressing combinations of male and female sex organs are increasingly common in waters downstream from water treatment plants. The phenomenon has mostly been blamed on hormone-related drugs like birth control and beauty products such as acne medicine.
Read article on the Russian page of Pravda.Ru