Author(s): Pellacani C, Buschini A, Furlini M, Poli P, Rossi C
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Abstract Since the 1980s, stricter water quality regulations have been promulgated in many countries throughout the world. We discuss the application of a battery of both in vivo and in vitro genotoxicity tests on lake water as a tool for a more complete assessment of surface water quality. The lake water concentrated by adsorption on C18 silica cartridges were used for the following in vitro biological assays: gene conversion, point mutation, mitochondrial DNA mutability assays on the diploid Saccharomyces cerevisiae D7 strain, with or without endogenous P450 complex induction; DNA damage on fresh human leukocytes by the comet. Toxicity testing on yeast and human cells was also performed. In vivo genotoxicity was determined by the comet assay on two well-established bio-indicator organisms of water quality (Cyprinus carpio erythrocytes and Dreissena polymorpha haemocytes) exposed in situ. The in vivo experiments and the water samplings were carried out during different campaigns to detect seasonal variations of both the water contents and physiological state of the animals. Temperature and oxygen level seasonal variations and different pollutant contents in the lake water appeared to affect the DNA migration in carp and zebra mussel cells. Seasonal variability of lake water quality was also evident in the in vitro genotoxicity and cytotoxicity tests, with regards to water pollutant quantity and quality (direct-acting compounds or indirect-acting compounds on yeast cells). However, the measured biological effects did not appear clearly related to the physical-chemical characteristics of lake waters. Therefore, together with the conventional chemical analysis, mutagenicity/genotoxicity assays should be included as additional parameters in water quality monitoring programs: their use could permit the quantification of mutagenic hazard in surface waters.
This article was published in Aquat Toxicol
and referenced in Fisheries and Aquaculture Journal