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Common Herbicide Causes a Sex Change In Frogs 7

MikeChino writes "The University of California Berkeley recently released a study that found the herbicide atrazine causes perfectly healthy genetically male frogs to grow up to be reproductive adult females. Atrazine is one of the most commonly used herbicides in the world, and it is also the most commonly found water pollutant in North America. Outlawed in Europe in 2003 after some disturbing links to prostate and breast cancer surfaced, in the US over 80 million pounds are dumped every year. The EPA regulates atrazine and has set the legal limit at 3 parts per billion; however, the University of California Berkeley study used only 2.5 parts per billion, proving that even the legal limit can be dangerous."
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Common Herbicide Causes a Sex Change In Frogs

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  • Seems like those worries about herbicides affecting sexual development have some basis in fact. Makes me wonder how many other commonly used chemicals have similar side affects.

  • While the study may have shown negative results at a limit less than the legal limit this really doesn't show anything regarding humans. Frogs spend much more time in and around water than humans do. Obviously our anatomies are completely different. I have no doubt that Atrazine has all sorts of downsides this study really doesn't show whether or not the legal limit is safe or not.
    • by eam ( 192101 )

      It shows that the legal limit is not safe for frogs. Some would argue that the frogs can have an effect on human life. We might want to keep them around to eat insects & such.

      Should our only concern be the direct effect on humans, or should we also consider possible indirect effects?

  • Outlawed in Europe in 2003 after some disturbing links to prostate and breast cancer surfaced

    Sometimes it is great to live in Europe ... one less poison to worry about, 1e6 to go :-(

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