Invasive frogs may spread deadly amphibian fungus | Science News



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Invasive frogs may spread deadly amphibian fungus

Imported African species implicated in B. dendrobatidis epidemic

3:56pm, May 16, 2013

More evidence has just dropped into place suggesting that frogs once imported to the United States for pregnancy testing could have spread a fungus deadly to many native amphibian species.

From about the 1940s into the 1970s, medical labs tested for pregnancy-associated hormonal changes by injecting human urine into readily available and easy-to-work-with African clawed frogs. If a woman was pregnant, traces of hormones in her urine would accelerate egg development in the frog.

Frogs sometimes escaped or were set free, allowing African clawed frogs to get a foothold in North America.

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