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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(3), 539; doi:10.3390/ijms18030539

Evaluating Complex Mixtures in the Zebrafish Embryo by Reconstituting Field Water Samples: A Metal Pollution Case Study

1
Zebrafishlab, Veterinary Physiology and Biochemistry, Department of Veterinary Sciences, University of Antwerp, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Wilrijk, Belgium
2
Systemic Physiological and Ecotoxicological Research (SPHERE), Department of Biology, University of Antwerp, Groenenborgerlaan 171, 2020 Antwerp, Belgium
3
StatUa Center for Statistics, University of Antwerp, 2000 Antwerp, Belgium
4
Evolutionary Ecology, Department of Biology, University of Antwerp, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Wilrijk, Belgium
5
Applied Veterinary Morphology, Department of Veterinary Sciences, University of Antwerp, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Wilrijk, Belgium
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Juliette Legler and Masato Matsuoka
Received: 23 December 2016 / Revised: 12 February 2017 / Accepted: 24 February 2017 / Published: 2 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Zebrafish: A Model for Toxicological Research)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [3436 KB, uploaded 2 March 2017]   |  

Abstract

Accurately assessing the toxicity of complex, environmentally relevant mixtures remains an important challenge in ecotoxicology. The goal was to identify biological effects after exposure to environmental water samples and to determine whether the observed effects could be explained by the waterborne metal mixture found in the samples. Zebrafish embryos were exposed to water samples of five different sites originating from two Flemish (Mol and Olen, Belgium) metal contaminated streams: “Scheppelijke Nete” (SN) and “Kneutersloop” (K), and a ditch (D), which is the contamination source of SN. Trace metal concentrations, and Na, K, Mg and Ca concentrations were measured using ICP-MS and were used to reconstitute site-specific water samples. We assessed whether the effects that were observed after exposure to environmental samples could be explained by metal mixture toxicity under standardized laboratory conditions. Exposure to “D” or “reconstituted D” water caused 100% mortality. SN and reconstituted SN water caused similar effects on hatching, swim bladder inflation, growth and swimming activity. A canonical discriminant analysis confirmed a high similarity between both exposure scenarios, indicating that the observed toxicity was indeed primarily caused by metals. The applied workflow could be a valuable approach to evaluate mixture toxicity that limits time and costs while maintaining biological relevance. View Full-Text
Keywords: metals; mixture toxicity; aquatic toxicology; zebrafish embryo; field-to-lab testing metals; mixture toxicity; aquatic toxicology; zebrafish embryo; field-to-lab testing
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Michiels, E.D.G.; Vergauwen, L.; Hagenaars, A.; Fransen, E.; Dongen, S.V.; Van Cruchten, S.J.; Bervoets, L.; Knapen, D. Evaluating Complex Mixtures in the Zebrafish Embryo by Reconstituting Field Water Samples: A Metal Pollution Case Study. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18, 539.

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