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Occurrence and ecotoxicity of endocrine disruptor chemicals in aquatic environment and sewage treatment systems
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, Department of Biology and Environmental Science. Rio de Janeiro State University. (ESEG/BioProcess/LABIFI)
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The applicability of one selected method for indirect measurement of vitellogenin (Vtg) in fish plasma based on the quantification of alkali-labile phosphates (ALP method) to assess estrogenicity in water was investigated. The ALP method applied in this investigation was originally developed with Carassius carassius (Crucian carps). This thesis describes the first attempt of using this method with Oreochromis niloticus (Nile tilapia). In a first part of the investigation, laboratory studies were conducted with water spiked with 17a-ethinylestradiol (EE2), 17b-estradiol (E2), and estrone (E1) in order to assess the method sensitivity. The effects of these estrogens were investigated on the basis of both load and concentration, using experimental units with two different volumes (2 L and 130 L). After validation of the method, the estrogenicity of the following contaminated waters was assessed: (i) affluent and effluent of one large conventional municipal wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) and one small decentralized wastewater treatment plant (Decentralized Engineered Ecosystem-DEE); (ii) surface water (SW) and groundwater (GW) obtained from a gasoline-contaminated marshland; (iii) samples from a urban lagoon (LRF) located in Rio de Janeiro city with high density population and clandestine sewage discharge. An additional goal of the thesis was to assess the effect (other than endocrine disruption) caused by EE2, E2 and E1 to microalgae. Assays with single and mixed estrogens and single and combined cultures (S+) of the green microalgae P. subcapitata and D. subspicatus were carried out. The results have shown that EE2 and E2 were more estrogenic and toxic than E1 to the fishes and to the microalgae respectively. Mixed solutions of estrogens (E+) in equal proportions (EE2:E2:E1) resulted in additive effect on O. niloticus and P. subcapitata and less-than-additive effect on D. subspicatus and S+ measured as ALP (for fish) and EC50 (for microalgae). Combined cultivation of both algae species and longer exposure time (96 h) resulted in attenuation of the toxic effects caused by single (EE2, E2 or E1) and mixed (E+) estrogens according to EC50 (T0h 0.07, 0.09, 0.18, and 0.06 µg mL-1; and T96h 1.29, 1.87, 5.58, and 4.61 µg mL-1, respectively). The decentralized engineered ecosystem was more efficient than the conventional WWTP regarding estrogenicity removal from the final effluent. Estrogenicity was detected in some samples of the urban lagoon (LRF) and the surface (SW) and groundwater (GW) of the gasoline-contaminated marshland. Therefore, the investigations suggested that interactions (additive and less-than additive effect) take place when different estrogens are present in the water environment and interactions also occur between algae species, which affect the final toxicity. Additionally, the study highlighted the importance of taking into account not only concentration and dose regime but also the mass load and therefore, the volume used in the experimental units, which are rarely addressed in ecotoxicity assays. Considering the good sensitivity of O. niloticus exposed to relatively low concentrations of estrogens, the combination of the ALP method with auxiliary biomarkers (particularly micronucleus-MN) can be a suitable protocol for estrogenicity and genotoxicity detection in different contaminated waters as part of water environmental monitoring programs.

 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Växjö: Linnaeus University Press, 2014. , p. 140
Series
Linnaeus University Dissertations
Keywords [en]
Endocrine disruption; Alkali-labile phosphate; Estrogen hormones; Oreochromis niloticus; Unicellular green microalgae; Additive effect; Less-than additive effect; Chronic toxicity
National Category
Natural Sciences Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Natural Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-33902ISBN: 978-91-87427-87-9 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-33902DiVA, id: diva2:712504
Public defence
2014-05-23, Hörsalen Fullriggaren, Landgången 4, Kalmar, 09:30 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2014-05-26 Created: 2014-04-15 Last updated: 2014-11-24Bibliographically approved

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de Sa Salomao, Andre Luis

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