Author(s): Ahmad I, Maria VL, Oliveira M, Pacheco M, Santos MA
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Abstract Fish in the aquatic environment can be subjected to a multipollution state and the occurrence of sequential exposures is an important aspect of eco-toxicological research. In this context, a preceding exposure can affect a toxic response to a subsequent exposure. Therefore, the current study was based on sequential exposures, viz. to a PAH-like compound (beta-naphthoflavone, BNF) followed by a heavy metal (chromium, Cr), focusing on the assessment of oxidative stress responses and their role in induction of genotoxicity. Oxidative stress responses in gill and kidney were investigated in European eel (Anguilla anguilla L.), and measured as lipid peroxidation (LPO), glutathione peroxidase (GPX), catalase (CAT) and glutathione S-transferase (GST) activity, and reduced glutathione (GSH) concentration, whereas genotoxicity was measured as DNA strand breakage. Fish were exposed for 24 h to two Cr concentrations (100 microM, 1 mM), with or without pre-exposure to BNF (2.7 microM, 24 h). In gill, a GSH decrease was observed along with loss of DNA integrity at all exposure conditions except at the lowest Cr concentration, showing a crucial role of GSH over genotoxicity. Moreover, sporadic induction of antioxidant enzymes was not effective in the protection against genotoxicity. However, a different mechanism seems to occur in kidney, since the loss of DNA integrity detected for all exposed groups was not accompanied by alterations in antioxidant levels. With regards to peroxidative damage, both organs showed an LPO increase after sequential exposure to BNF and 100 microM Cr. However, no association between LPO induction and antioxidant responses could be established, showing that LPO is not predictable solely on the basis of antioxidant depletion. The interference of BNF pre-exposure with the response of organs to Cr showed a marked dependence on the Cr concentration. Gill showed synergistic effects on LPO and GPX increase, as well as on CAT and GSH decrease for the lowest Cr concentration. However, for the highest concentration an additive effect on decrease of DNA integrity and an antagonistic effect on the increase of GPX were observed. In kidney, synergistic effects were evident on LPO increase and GSH decrease for the lowest Cr concentration, as well as on CAT and GST decrease for the highest concentration. In contrast, an antagonistic action was observed on DNA integrity loss for both Cr concentrations. The current results are relevant in assessing the interactions of PAHs and metals and contribute to a better knowledge about oxidative stress and mechanisms of genotoxicity in fish.
This article was published in Mutat Res
and referenced in Fisheries and Aquaculture Journal