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Toxics, Volume 11, Issue 7 (July 2023) – 95 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Scientists have developed a cutting-edge AI framework capable of assessing the carcinogenic potential of hazardous chemical mixtures, including PFAS, which have long been associated with the development of cancer. The new approach, known as HNNMixCancer, integrates a sophisticated mathematical model to simulate chemical mixtures and enables researchers to determine binary categorization, categorical carcinogenicity, and carcinogenic potency. One of the most significant advantages of the HNNMixCancer method is its ability to handle assumption-based mixtures, making it an invaluable tool for toxicology studies that lack extensive experimental data on the carcinogenicity and toxicity of chemical combinations. View this paper
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15 pages, 920 KiB  
Review
Clinical Toxicology of Vitamin D in Pediatrics: A Review and Case Reports
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 642; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070642 - 24 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1528
Abstract
Intoxication of vitamin D is not a common case in pediatrics. Vitamin D supplements are sold as OTC drugs; however, there is a lack of public education about the permissible limits of vitamin D intake which may lead to vitamin D toxicity (VDT). [...] Read more.
Intoxication of vitamin D is not a common case in pediatrics. Vitamin D supplements are sold as OTC drugs; however, there is a lack of public education about the permissible limits of vitamin D intake which may lead to vitamin D toxicity (VDT). This review aims to give insights to readers or practitioners about the clinical toxicology of vitamin D in pediatrics, which includes the mechanism of VDT, case reports, and the management of vitamin D poisoning. VDT refers to serum 25(OH)D levels, particularly when the level exceeds 100 ng/mL (250 nmol/L) or is defined as hypervitaminosis D. Hypercalcemia is a common condition of vitamin D toxicity. Vitamin D and its metabolites in moderate levels can induce hypercalcemia, as indicated by the elevation of osteoclastic bone resorption, the presence of calcium in renal tubules, intestinal calcium intake (through increased production of calcium-binding protein in enterocytes), and the decrease of parathyroid hormone synthesis. VDT in pediatrics can be managed by discontinuing vitamin D intake; using activated charcoal, furosemide, prednisone, and calcitonin; rehydration using intravenous sodium chloride 0.9%; and dextrose fluid therapy. It is important for parents to be more careful when providing vitamin D to their children. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Drugs Toxicity)
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12 pages, 3297 KiB  
Article
Long-Term Exposure to Cadmium Causes Hepatic Iron Deficiency through the Suppression of Iron-Transport-Related Gene Expression in the Proximal Duodenum
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 641; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070641 - 24 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 968
Abstract
Cadmium (Cd) is an environmental pollutant that damages various tissues. Cd may cause a depletion of iron stores and subsequently an iron deficiency state in the liver. However, the molecular mechanism of decreased iron accumulation in the liver induced by long-term exposure to [...] Read more.
Cadmium (Cd) is an environmental pollutant that damages various tissues. Cd may cause a depletion of iron stores and subsequently an iron deficiency state in the liver. However, the molecular mechanism of decreased iron accumulation in the liver induced by long-term exposure to Cd is unknown. In this study, we investigated the hepatic accumulation of iron and the proximal duodenal expression of the genes involved in iron transport using mice chronically exposed to Cd. Five-week-old female C57BL/6J mice were fed a diet containing 300 ppm Cd for 12, 15, 19 and 21 months. The iron concentration in the liver was markedly decreased by Cd. Among iron-transport-related genes in the proximal duodenum, the gene expression of HCP1 and Cybrd1 was significantly decreased by Cd. HCP1 is an influx transporter of heme iron. Cybrd1 is a reductase that allows non-heme iron to enter cells. The expression of iron-transport-related genes on the duodenal basolateral membrane side was hardly altered by Cd. These results suggest that long-term exposure to Cd suppresses the expression of HCP1 and Cybrd1 in the proximal duodenum, resulting in reduced iron absorption and iron accumulation in the liver. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cadmium and Trace Elements Toxicity)
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14 pages, 1706 KiB  
Article
Assessing Leaching of Potentially Hazardous Elements from Cookware during Cooking: A Serious Public Health Concern
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 640; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070640 - 24 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1746
Abstract
The intake of toxic metals from cooking utensils through food is of growing concern to the medical community. This intake poses serious risk to human health. In many developing countries, different types of contaminated metals scraps are used to make cooking utensils. The [...] Read more.
The intake of toxic metals from cooking utensils through food is of growing concern to the medical community. This intake poses serious risk to human health. In many developing countries, different types of contaminated metals scraps are used to make cooking utensils. The leaching of both nutritionally essential and toxic metals in significant quantities from cookware during the cooking process results in food contamination and poses a substantial health risk. In the present study, the leaching of some toxic and potentially toxic metals from cooking utensils into different solutions and food was investigated. A preliminary survey indicated that the majority of individuals tend to use aluminum cookware due to its affordability, overlooking the potential health risks associated with these inexpensive and lower-quality cooking utensils. XRF analysis revealed that aluminum, steel, and copper cookware had K, Ca, Pb, Cd, Ni, V, Sn Mo, Zn, Bi, and Tb as contaminants. In addition, aluminum (3.2 ± 0.25 to 4.64 ± 0.20 g/kg) and copper cookware (2.90 ± 0.12 g/kg) were highly contaminated with lead. The time and pH-dependent study revealed that leaching of metals (Al, Pb, Ni, Cr, Cd, Cu, and Fe, etc.) into food was predominantly from anodized and non-anodized aluminum cookware. More metal leaching was observed from new aluminum cookware compared to old. Acidic food was found to cause more metals to leach during cooking. Blood metal analysis of the local population revealed the presence of high concentrations of Al, Pb, Cd, and Ni. In conclusion, leaching of toxic or potentially toxic metals from cookware into food, especially from anodized and non-anodized aluminum cookware, poses a potential public health risk. Practical applications: Cooking utensils are routinely used for the preparation of food. However, the harmful impact posed by these essential items is largely unknown. The current research briefly explains the toxic metals leaching from cookware in a pH-dependent manner and leaves a message to the public, especially in developing countries like Pakistan, regarding the type of cookware suitable for cooking purposes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Agrochemicals and Food Toxicology)
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13 pages, 3194 KiB  
Article
Three-Dimensional Mass Transfer Modeling of Hydroquinone Adsorption on Phragmites australis Biochar
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 639; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070639 - 23 Jul 2023
Viewed by 707
Abstract
In this work, the overall adsorption kinetic process of hydroquinone on Phragmites australis biochar (PAC) was analyzed in depth. A 3D mass transfer model of pore volume and surface diffusion was established, and the diffusion mechanism was analyzed. The characterization results show PAC [...] Read more.
In this work, the overall adsorption kinetic process of hydroquinone on Phragmites australis biochar (PAC) was analyzed in depth. A 3D mass transfer model of pore volume and surface diffusion was established, and the diffusion mechanism was analyzed. The characterization results show PAC has a higher porosity value, which is conducive to the adsorption of hydroquinone. The adsorption process modeling results show that the combined effect of pore volume diffusion and surface diffusion promotes the total diffusion process of hydroquinone in the PAC particles, and the two mechanisms of pore volume and surface diffusion exist simultaneously. Under the different operating concentrations, the range of surface diffusion coefficient Ds is 2.5 × 10−10–1.74 × 10−9 cm2/s, and the contribution rate of surface diffusion SDCP% is close to 100%, which is much larger than pore volume diffusion, revealing that regardless of the contact time and position, surface diffusion occupies the main position in intraparticle diffusion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanoparticle- and Cell-Specific Toxicological Mechanisms)
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16 pages, 3994 KiB  
Article
Biodegradation Capabilities of Paraquat-Degrading Bacteria Immobilized on Nanoceramics
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 638; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070638 - 23 Jul 2023
Viewed by 940
Abstract
The biodegradation of paraquat was investigated using immobilized microbial cells on nanoceramics fabricated from nanoscale kaolinite. Pseudomonas putida and Bacillus subtilis, which degrade paraquat, were immobilized separately on nanoceramics (respectively called ICnc−P and ICnc−B). The attachment of bacteria [...] Read more.
The biodegradation of paraquat was investigated using immobilized microbial cells on nanoceramics fabricated from nanoscale kaolinite. Pseudomonas putida and Bacillus subtilis, which degrade paraquat, were immobilized separately on nanoceramics (respectively called ICnc−P and ICnc−B). The attachment of bacteria to nanoceramics resulted from electrostatic force interactions, hydrogen bonding, and covalent bonding (between the cells and the support materials). The initial 10 mg L−1 concentration of paraquat in water was removed by the adsorption process using nanoceramics at 68% and ceramics at 52%, respectively. The immobilized cells on the nanoceramics were able to remove approximately 92% of the paraquat within 10 h, whereas the free cells could only remove 4%. When the paraquat was removed, the cell−immobilized nanoceramics exhibited a significant decrease in dissolved organic nitrogen (DON). ICnc−B was responsible for 34% of DON biodegradation, while ICnc−P was responsible for 22%. Ammonia was identified as the end product of ammonification resulting from paraquat mineralization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Toxicity Reduction and Environmental Remediation)
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13 pages, 4541 KiB  
Article
Characterization and Risk Assessment of PM2.5-Bound Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons and their Derivatives Emitted from a Typical Pesticide Factory in China
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 637; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070637 - 23 Jul 2023
Viewed by 988
Abstract
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and their derivatives have received extensive attention due to their negative effects on the environment and on human health. However, few studies have performed comprehensive assessments of PAHs emitted from pesticide factories. This study assessed the concentration, composition, and [...] Read more.
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and their derivatives have received extensive attention due to their negative effects on the environment and on human health. However, few studies have performed comprehensive assessments of PAHs emitted from pesticide factories. This study assessed the concentration, composition, and health risk of 52 PM2.5-bound PAHs during the daytime and nighttime in the vicinity of a typical pesticide factory. The total concentration of 52 PAHs (Σ52PAHs) ranged from 53.04 to 663.55 ng/m3. No significant differences were observed between daytime and nighttime PAH concentrations. The average concentrations of twenty-two parent PAHs, seven alkylated PAHs, ten oxygenated PAHs, and twelve nitrated PAHs were 112.55 ± 89.69, 18.05 ± 13.76, 66.13 ± 54.79, and 3.90 ± 2.24 ng/m3, respectively. A higher proportion of high-molecular-weight (4–5 rings) PAHs than low-molecular-weight (2–3 rings) PAHs was observed. This was likely due to the high-temperature combustion of fuels. Analysis of diagnostic ratios indicated that the PAHs were likely derived from coal combustion and mixed sources. The total carcinogenic equivalent toxicity ranged from 15.93 to 181.27 ng/m3. The incremental lifetime cancer risk from inhalation, ingestion, and dermal contact with the PAHs was 2.33 × 10−3 for men and 2.53 × 10−3 for women, and the loss of life expectancy due to the PAHs was 11,915 min (about 0.023 year) for men and 12,952 min (about 0.025 year) for women. These results suggest that long-term exposure to PM2.5 emissions from a pesticide factory has significant adverse effects on health. The study results support implementing the characterization of PAH emissions from pesticide factories and provides a scientific basis for optimizing the living environment around pesticide factories. Full article
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14 pages, 1926 KiB  
Article
Aflatoxin B1 Exacerbates Genomic Instability and Apoptosis in the BTBR Autism Mouse Model via Dysregulating DNA Repair Pathway
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 636; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070636 - 22 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1037
Abstract
The pathophysiology of autism is influenced by a combination of environmental and genetic factors. Furthermore, individuals with autism appear to be at a higher risk of developing cancer. However, this is not fully understood. Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) is a potent food pollutant carcinogen. [...] Read more.
The pathophysiology of autism is influenced by a combination of environmental and genetic factors. Furthermore, individuals with autism appear to be at a higher risk of developing cancer. However, this is not fully understood. Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) is a potent food pollutant carcinogen. The effects of AFB1 on genomic instability in autism have not yet been investigated. Hence, we have aimed to investigate whether repeated exposure to AFB1 causes alterations in genomic stability, a hallmark of cancer and apoptosis in the BTBR autism mouse model. The data revealed increased micronuclei generation, oxidative DNA strand breaks, and apoptosis in BTBR animals exposed to AFB1 when compared to unexposed animals. Lipid peroxidation in BTBR mice increased with a reduction in glutathione following AFB1 exposure, demonstrating an exacerbated redox imbalance. Furthermore, the expressions of some of DNA damage/repair- and apoptosis-related genes were also significantly dysregulated. Increases in the redox disturbance and dysregulation in the DNA damage/repair pathway are thus important determinants of susceptibility to AFB1-exacerbated genomic instability and apoptosis in BTBR mice. This investigation shows that AFB1-related genomic instability can accelerate the risk of cancer development. Moreover, approaches that ameliorate the redox balance and DNA damage/repair dysregulation may mitigate AFB1-caused genomic instability. Full article
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17 pages, 2801 KiB  
Article
The Accumulation of Toxic Elements (Pb, Hg, Cd, As, and Cu) in Red Swamp Crayfish (Procambarus clarkii) in Qianjiang and the Associated Risks to Human Health
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 635; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070635 - 22 Jul 2023
Viewed by 960
Abstract
Due to rapidly expanding crayfish consumption worldwide, the food safety of red swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii) is of great concern. China is the largest consumer and producer of crayfish globally. As of yet, it is unknown whether the main crayfish production [...] Read more.
Due to rapidly expanding crayfish consumption worldwide, the food safety of red swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii) is of great concern. China is the largest consumer and producer of crayfish globally. As of yet, it is unknown whether the main crayfish production cities in China are within safe levels of toxic heavy metals and metalloids. For 16 consecutive years, Qianjiang city ranked first in China in processing export volumes of red swamp crayfish. This study presents a comprehensive analysis of the enrichment levels and associated health risks of the species in Qianjiang. In our research, samples of four crayfish tissues, including the head, hepatopancreas, gills, and muscles, were collected from 38 sampling sites distributed in Qianjiang to evaluate the concentration levels of five heavy metals (Pb, Hg, Cd, As, and Cu). The concentration levels of all five metals in muscle did not surpass the national standard. Furthermore, eight significant correlations have been found. For further in-depth assess risk of crayfish in Qianjiang, estimated daily intake (EDI), target hazard quotient (THQ), carcinogenic risk (CR), and estimated maximum allowable consumption rates (CRmm) were evaluated in the abdomen muscle and hepatopancreas. The THQ values for each metal were found to be less than 1, while the CR values were below 10–6. Additionally, the CRmm for adults was determined to be 17.2 meals per month. These findings, based on the analysis of five metallic elements included in this study, suggest that the consumption of crayfish abdomen muscle in Qianjiang does not pose any significant health risks. However, it is noteworthy that certain regions exhibit elevated levels of arsenic in the hepatopancreas, surpassing the national standard, thereby rendering them unsuitable for excessive consumption. In general, the findings can be used to provide guidance for safe dietary practices in China. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Health Risk Assessment of the Trace and Macro Elements)
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17 pages, 7650 KiB  
Article
A Multiphase Coupled Hydrodynamic Model for Fate and Transport Simulation of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in a Semi-Closed Narrow Bay
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 634; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070634 - 21 Jul 2023
Viewed by 752
Abstract
With their unique geographical characteristics, semi-closed narrow bays are important places for human survival but vulnerable to pollution. Because pollutants (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, PAHs) migrate and undergo transformation through a dynamic mechanism in bays of this type, environmental authorities have formulated a series [...] Read more.
With their unique geographical characteristics, semi-closed narrow bays are important places for human survival but vulnerable to pollution. Because pollutants (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, PAHs) migrate and undergo transformation through a dynamic mechanism in bays of this type, environmental authorities have formulated a series of effective measures for pollution prevention and control, but these are difficult to realize. Based on monitoring and historical data, a multiphase-coupled hydrodynamic model combined with a carcinogenic risk-assessment model was able to solve the challenging environmental problem. Results showed that the hydrodynamic condition in the semi-closed narrow bay was very complex. A weaker hydrodynamic force had an adverse influence on the diffusion of pollutants, further amplified in part by the head of the semi-closed narrow bay, resulting in a higher ecological risk. The prediction results indicated that the total amount of PAHs transported from seawater to sediments was about 4.7 × 1013 ng/year, which might cause serious threats to aquaculture or human health. Full article
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12 pages, 1052 KiB  
Article
Impacts of Indoor Dust Exposure on Human Colonic Cell Viability, Cytotoxicity and Apoptosis
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 633; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070633 - 21 Jul 2023
Viewed by 723
Abstract
Introduction: Environmental exposure to indoor dust is known to be associated with myriad health conditions, especially among children. Established routes of exposure include inhalation and non-dietary ingestion, which result in the direct exposure of gastrointestinal epithelia to indoor dust. Despite this, little prior [...] Read more.
Introduction: Environmental exposure to indoor dust is known to be associated with myriad health conditions, especially among children. Established routes of exposure include inhalation and non-dietary ingestion, which result in the direct exposure of gastrointestinal epithelia to indoor dust. Despite this, little prior research is available on the impacts of indoor dust on the health of human gastrointestinal tissue. Methods: Cultured human colonic (CCD841) cells were exposed for 24 h to standard trace metal dust (TMD) and organic contaminant dust (OD) samples at the following concentrations: 0, 10, 25, 50, 75, 100, 250, and 500 µg/mL. Cell viability was assessed using an MTT assay and protease analysis (glycyl-phenylalanyl-aminofluorocoumarin (GF-AFC)); cytotoxicity was assessed with a lactate dehydrogenase release assay, and apoptosis was assessed using a Caspase-Glo 3/7 activation assay. Results: TMD and OD decreased cellular metabolic and protease activity and increased apoptosis and biomarkers of cell membrane damage (LDH) in CCD841 human colonic epithelial cells. Patterns appeared to be, in general, dose-dependent, with the highest TMD and OD exposures associated with the largest increases in apoptosis and LDH, as well as with the largest decrements in metabolic and protease activities. Conclusions: TMD and OD exposure were associated with markers of reduced viability and increased cytotoxicity and apoptosis in human colonic cells. These findings add important information to the understanding of the physiologic effects of indoor dust exposure on human health. The doses used in our study represent a range of potential exposure levels, and the effects observed at the higher doses may not necessarily occur under typical exposure conditions. The effects of long-term, low-dose exposure to indoor dust are still not fully understood and warrant further investigation. Future research should explore these physiological mechanisms to further our understanding and inform public health interventions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Long-Term PM2.5 Exposure and Cardiometabolic Health Effects)
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17 pages, 9013 KiB  
Article
Accumulation Pattern and Risk Assessment of Potentially Toxic Elements in Permafrost-Affected Agricultural Soils in Northeast China
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 632; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070632 - 21 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 686
Abstract
The accumulation of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) in agricultural soils is of particular concern in China, while its status, ecological risks, and human health hazards have been little studied in the permafrost areas of Northeast China. In this study, 75 agricultural soil samples [...] Read more.
The accumulation of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) in agricultural soils is of particular concern in China, while its status, ecological risks, and human health hazards have been little studied in the permafrost areas of Northeast China. In this study, 75 agricultural soil samples (0–20 cm) were collected from the Arctic Village, Mo’he City, in the northernmost part of China. The average concentration (mean ± standard deviation) of As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb, and Zn were 12.11 ± 3.66 mg/kg, 0.11 ± 0.08 mg/kg, 52.50 ± 8.83 mg/kg, 12.08 ± 5.12 mg/kg, 0.05 ± 0.02 mg/kg, 14.90 ± 5.35 mg/kg, 22.38 ± 3.04 mg/kg, and 68.07 ± 22.71 mg/kg, respectively. Correlation analysis, cluster analysis, and principal component analysis indicated that As, Cu, Ni, and Zn likely originated from geogenic processes, Hg and Pb from long-range atmospheric transport, Cd from planting activities, and Cr from Holocene alluvium. The geo-accumulation index and enrichment factor showed that As, Cd, Hg, and Zn are enriched in soils. The Nemerow pollution index showed that 66.67%, 24%, and 1.33% of soil samples were in slight, moderate, and heavy pollution levels, respectively, with Hg being the most important element affecting the comprehensive pollution index. The potential ecological risk index showed that 48.00% and 1.33% of soil samples were in the moderate ecological risk and high potential ecological risk levels, respectively. The non-carcinogenic and carcinogenic human health risk index for adults and children were both less than 1, which was within the acceptable range. This study revealed the accumulation pattern of PTEs in agricultural soils of permafrost regions and provided a scientific basis for research on ecological security and human health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Health Risk Assessment of the Trace and Macro Elements)
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24 pages, 1760 KiB  
Review
Marine Pollution and Advances in Biomonitoring in Cartagena Bay in the Colombian Caribbean
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 631; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070631 - 20 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1194
Abstract
Coastal zones sustain extensive biodiversity, support key processes for ocean dynamics, and influence the balance of the global environment. They also provide resources and services to communities, determine their culture, and are the basis for their economic growth. Cartagena Bay in the Colombian [...] Read more.
Coastal zones sustain extensive biodiversity, support key processes for ocean dynamics, and influence the balance of the global environment. They also provide resources and services to communities, determine their culture, and are the basis for their economic growth. Cartagena Bay in the Colombian Caribbean is the place of the establishment of one of the country’s main cities, which has a great historical and tourist attraction, and it is also the location of the main commercial port and a great variety of industries. Historically, it has been affected by several environmental impacts and intense pollution. This situation has gained the attention of different researchers, so herein is presented a literature review with a systematic approach using RStudio’s bibliometrix on the presence of pollutants and the impact on biodiversity in recent decades, providing a critical analysis of the state of Cartagena Bay and its future needs to ensure its recovery and conservation. In addition, the socioeconomic dynamics related to the environmental state of Cartagena Bay are presented from the framework drivers, pressures, status, impacts, and responses (DPSIR). The update and critical understanding of the sources, fate, and effects of pollution are important not only for the knowledge of the status of this singular ecosystem but also to encourage future research and entrench evidence to support decision makers’ actions. This review highlights that several pollutants that have been detected exceeding sediment quality guidelines, like As, Cd, Hg, and PAH, are also reported to bioaccumulate and cause damage throughout the trophic levels of the coastal environment. In addition, the potential use of sentinel species and biomarkers for their monitoring is discussed. Finally, the factors that cause pollution and threaten the state of the bay continue to exert pressure and impact; thus, there is a call for the further monitoring of this ecosystem and the strengthening of policies and regulations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Ecotoxicology)
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16 pages, 2502 KiB  
Article
The Migration Mechanism of BTEX in Single- and Double-Lithology Soil Columns under Groundwater Table Fluctuation
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 630; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070630 - 20 Jul 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1051
Abstract
The migration of light non-aqueous phase liquids (LNAPLs) trapped in porous media is a complex phenomenon. Groundwater table fluctuation can not only affect contaminant migration but also redox conditions, bacterial communities, and contaminant degradation. Understanding LNAPLs’ (e.g., benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX)) [...] Read more.
The migration of light non-aqueous phase liquids (LNAPLs) trapped in porous media is a complex phenomenon. Groundwater table fluctuation can not only affect contaminant migration but also redox conditions, bacterial communities, and contaminant degradation. Understanding LNAPLs’ (e.g., benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX)) behavior within porous media is critical for the high efficiency of most in situ remediation systems. A laboratory study of single- and double-lithology soil column investigation of the groundwater table fluctuation effect on BTEX transport, using benzene and toluene as typical compounds, in a typical representative model of aquifers subjected to water table fluctuation was undertaken in this study. The results show that benzene and toluene migration in single-lithology soil columns packed with sand was mainly affected by flushing due to the hydraulic force induced by water table fluctuations and that the double-lithology soil column packed with sand and silt was significantly affected by retention due to the higher adsorption induced by 10 cm of silt. The dissolution mainly correlated with the BTEX migration in saturated zones, and the contaminant concentration increased when the water table fell and decreased when the water table rose. For a contaminated site with a single-lithology structure consisting of sand, more attention should be paid to organic contaminant removal within the groundwater, and a double-lithology structure containing silt is more suited to the removal of organic contaminants from the silt layer. The difference in biodegradation kinetics between the groundwater table fluctuation (GTF) zone and the saturated zone should be better understood for the remediation of BTEX compounds. Full article
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13 pages, 579 KiB  
Article
Influence of Reagents on Qualitative Indicators of Artificial Anti-Deflationary Phytocenosis on Waste from a Rare Earth Tailing Facility
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 629; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070629 - 20 Jul 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 737
Abstract
This paper presents an assessment of the effect of various reagents on the qualitative indicators of anti-deflationary single-species sowing phytocenosis on enrichment waste from rare earth ores. It has been established that tailings of loparite ores are not suitable for biological reclamation due [...] Read more.
This paper presents an assessment of the effect of various reagents on the qualitative indicators of anti-deflationary single-species sowing phytocenosis on enrichment waste from rare earth ores. It has been established that tailings of loparite ores are not suitable for biological reclamation due to low values of hygroscopic moisture (0.54–2.85%) and clay particles (17.6 ± 0.6%) and high content of bioavailable forms of aluminum (504 ± 14 mg/kg). Seeds of red fescue (Festuca rubra L.) were grown on the tailings of loparite ore enrichment with the addition of opoka (O), brucite (B), and vermiculite (V). The quality of the seed cenosis was assessed by the dry biomass of the above-ground parts of the plants and the plant height. A positive effect (one-way ANOVA followed by Tukey’s HSD test (p < 0.05 and p < 0.01)) of the considered combinations of reagents on the growth of above-ground biomass from 31.5% (V) to 70.3 (V + O), 82.4% (V + B), and 81.8% (V + O+B) and on plant height from 53.8% (V) up to 78.6 (V + O), 83.8% (V + B), and 75.4% (V + O+B) was revealed. The use of a combination of V + O and V + B reagents made it possible to significantly reduce the content of Al (by 19.0% and 52.8%), Sr (by 16.5% and 12.9%), La (by 65.2% and 40.6%), and Ce (by 66.8% and 41.9%) in the aerial part of the sowing phytocenosis compared to control. The results obtained here can become the basis for development of a combined sorption technology for the reclamation of technogenically disturbed lands. Full article
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14 pages, 5646 KiB  
Article
A Comparable icELISA and Lateral Flow Immunoassay for the Sensitive and Rapid Detection of 4,4′-Dinitrocarbanilide in Chicken
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 628; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070628 - 20 Jul 2023
Viewed by 683
Abstract
4,4′-dinitrocarbanilide (DNC) is a key component and marker residue of nicarbazin, which forms residues in edible tissue and then causes nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity in humans if used excessively. To simplify sample preparation and monitor the DNC rapidly and accurately, a comparable icELISA and [...] Read more.
4,4′-dinitrocarbanilide (DNC) is a key component and marker residue of nicarbazin, which forms residues in edible tissue and then causes nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity in humans if used excessively. To simplify sample preparation and monitor the DNC rapidly and accurately, a comparable icELISA and lateral flow immunoassay (LFIA) was developed in this study. Briefly, the reaction parameters were explored for improving the sensitivity of icELISA and LFIA. Under the optimal conditions, methanol was selected as the extracting solvent for DNC in chicken, and 20- and 10-fold dilutions of sample extraction eliminated the matrix effect for icELISA and LFIA, separately. After sample pretreatment, the analysis properties of icELISA and LFIA were compared. The limit of detection of icELISA for DNC was 0.8 μg/kg, and the visual and quantitative limits of detection of LFIA were 8 and 2.5 μg/kg. Compared with icELISA, LFIA showed lower sensitivity but obvious advantages in terms of matrix tolerance and detection time (within 15 min). The sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy of the developed assays satisfied the detection requirement even if using simple sample pretreatment. This comparable icELISA and LFIA provided mutual verifiability methods for the accurate detection of DNC in chicken. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Agrochemicals and Food Toxicology)
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13 pages, 3005 KiB  
Article
Evaluation of In Vitro Genotoxicity of Polystyrene Nanoparticles in Human Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 627; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070627 - 20 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1169
Abstract
According to the trade association PlasticEurope, global plastics production increased to 390.7 million tons in 2021. Unfortunately, the majority of produced plastics eventually end up as waste in the ocean or on land. Since synthetic plastics are not fully biodegradable, they tend to [...] Read more.
According to the trade association PlasticEurope, global plastics production increased to 390.7 million tons in 2021. Unfortunately, the majority of produced plastics eventually end up as waste in the ocean or on land. Since synthetic plastics are not fully biodegradable, they tend to persist in natural environments and transform into micro- and nanoplastic particles due to fragmentation. The presence of nanoplastics in air, water, and food causes ecotoxicological issues and leads to human exposure. One of the main concerns is their genotoxic potential. Therefore, this study aimed to evaluate the internalization rates, cytotoxicity, and genotoxicity of polystyrene nanoparticles (PS-NPs) in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) in vitro. The uptake of PS-NPs was confirmed with flow cytometry light scattering analysis. None of the tested nanoparticle concentrations had a cytotoxic effect on human PBMCs, as evaluated by a dual ethidium bromide/acridine orange staining technique. However, an alkaline comet assay results revealed a significant increase in the levels of primary DNA damage after 24 h of exposure to PS-NPs in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, all tested PS-NPs concentrations induced a significant amount of micronucleated cells, as well. The results of this study revealed the genotoxic potential of commercially manufactured polystyrene nanoparticles and highlighted the need for more studies with naturally occurring plastic NPs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxics Young Investigators Contributions Collection in 2023)
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24 pages, 8707 KiB  
Article
Vitamin E (α-Tocopherol) Does Not Ameliorate the Toxic Effect of Bisphenol S on the Metabolic Analytes and Pancreas Histoarchitecture of Diabetic Rats
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 626; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070626 - 19 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1143
Abstract
This study investigated whether the coadministration of vitamin E (VitE) diminishes the harmful effects provoked by plasticizer bisphenol S (BPS) in the serum metabolites related to hepatic and renal metabolism, as well as the endocrine pancreatic function in diabetic male Wistar rats. Rats [...] Read more.
This study investigated whether the coadministration of vitamin E (VitE) diminishes the harmful effects provoked by plasticizer bisphenol S (BPS) in the serum metabolites related to hepatic and renal metabolism, as well as the endocrine pancreatic function in diabetic male Wistar rats. Rats were divided into five groups (n = 5–6); the first group was healthy rats (Ctrl group). The other four groups were diabetic rats induced with 45 mg/kg bw of streptozotocin: Ctrl-D (diabetic control); VitE-D (100 mg/kg bw/d of VitE); BPS-D (100 mg/kg bw/d of BPS); The animals from the VitE + BPS-D group were administered 100 mg/kg bw/d of VitE + 100 mg/kg bw/d of BPS. All compounds were administered orally for 30 days. Body weight, biochemical assays, urinalysis, glucose tolerance test, pancreas histopathology, proximate chemical analysis in feces, and the activity of antioxidants in rat serum were assessed. The coadministration of VitE + BPS produced weight losses, increases in 14 serum analytes, and degeneration in the pancreas. Therefore, the VitE + BPS coadministration did not have a protective effect versus the harmful impact of BPS or the diabetic metabolic state; on the contrary, it partially aggravated the damage produced by the BPS. VitE is likely to have an additive effect on the toxicity of BPS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxics Young Investigators Contributions Collection in 2023)
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16 pages, 3067 KiB  
Article
Immunological and Histological Studies of Different Concentrations of Rosmarinus officinalis and Thymus vulgaris Extracts on Thymus Gland of Chick Embryos
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 625; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070625 - 19 Jul 2023
Viewed by 977
Abstract
Humanity has an ancient history of consuming medicinal plants for prophylaxis. Within hours, and even months, embryonic cells undergo several processes to form an organism. This study aimed to prove the positive or negative effects of using rosemary and thyme extract on the [...] Read more.
Humanity has an ancient history of consuming medicinal plants for prophylaxis. Within hours, and even months, embryonic cells undergo several processes to form an organism. This study aimed to prove the positive or negative effects of using rosemary and thyme extract on the thymus gland and level of IL-10, IgM, and IgG in serum of chick embryos. The immunological effect was measured by histological and immunological studies. A total of 160 fertilized eggs were randomly distributed into 8 groups; on the 0 and 8th day of incubation, all treated groups received a dose of 0.1 mL/egg. On the 14th and 20th days of incubation, the embryos were sacrificed and the samples were collected (serum and thymus gland). The data were analyzed using ANOVA. Simple damage in thymic tissue with a low cell density in the embryos was treated with high concentrations of rosemary and thyme extracts, as well as in the mixed group. A significant decrease in IgM levels in the group treated by a high concentration of thyme. A decrease in IgG levels was found in the group treated with a high concentration of rosemary and in the mixed group, while the group treated with a high concentration of thyme and the mixed group showed decreases on the 14th day. A significant decrease in IL-10 levels was found on the 14th day, followed by an increase on the 20th day. Despite the benefits of rosemary and thyme, inflammation signs appeared on embryos treated with these herbs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Agrochemicals and Food Toxicology)
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14 pages, 6336 KiB  
Article
Characterization and Polydispersity of Volcanic Ash Nanoparticles in Synthetic Lung Fluid
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 624; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070624 - 19 Jul 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1219
Abstract
The inhalation of natural nanoparticles (NPs) emitted from volcanic activity may be a risk to human health. However, the literature rarely reports the fate and response of NPs once in contact with lung fluids. In this work, we studied the particle size distribution [...] Read more.
The inhalation of natural nanoparticles (NPs) emitted from volcanic activity may be a risk to human health. However, the literature rarely reports the fate and response of NPs once in contact with lung fluids. In this work, we studied the particle size distribution of ashfall from Popocatépetl volcano, Mexico. The collected ashes (n = 5) were analyzed with scanning electron microscopy (SEM) to obtain the elemental composition and morphology, and to determine the size of the ash particles using ParticleMetric software (PMS). The PMS reported most of the ash to have submicrometric size (<1 μm) and an average equivalent circle of 2.72 μm. Moreover, to our knowledge, this study investigated for the first time the behavior of ash NPs at different times (0 to 24 h) while in contact with in vitro lung fluid, Gamble Solution (GS) and Artificial Lysosomal Fluid (ALF) using dynamic light scattering (DLS). We found a large variability in the hydrodynamic diameter, with values less than 1 nm and greater than 5 μm. Furthermore, aggregation and disaggregation processes were recognized in GS and ALF, respectively. The results of this study increase the knowledge of the interaction between NPs and lung fluids, particularly within the alveolar macrophage region. Full article
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20 pages, 760 KiB  
Systematic Review
Determinants of Pesticide Exposure in Occupational Studies: A Meta-Analysis
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 623; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070623 - 18 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1053
Abstract
Few epidemiological studies use exposure determinants specifically tailored to assess pesticide or plant protection product (PPP) exposures when assessing presumed association between occupational exposure and health outcomes among agricultural workers. This lack of exposure specificity could lead to results that fail to detect [...] Read more.
Few epidemiological studies use exposure determinants specifically tailored to assess pesticide or plant protection product (PPP) exposures when assessing presumed association between occupational exposure and health outcomes among agricultural workers. This lack of exposure specificity could lead to results that fail to detect an association. It could be related to the lack of consensus on exposure assessment methods and the choice of exposure determinants. We conducted a meta-analysis following the PRISMA checklist to identify PPP exposure determinants used in occupational studies and identified exposure determinants that best characterized agricultural exposures to PPPs. Out of 1436 studies identified, 71 were included. The exposure determinants identified were active ingredients, chemical classes, types of PPP, crops, tasks, frequencies, duration, lifetime exposure days, and intensity-weighted exposure days. Only six over 17 associations between exposure determinants and health outcomes were found with moderate quality of evidence. Overall, epidemiological studies had difficulty defining relevant determinants to characterize PPP exposures for agricultural workers. We recommend that a standardized list of determinants for PPP exposures in occupational exposure studies should include information on formulations, intensity, duration, and frequency of PPP exposure. Harmonized data collection on exposure and health outcomes are required as well as standard units for each exposure determinant. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Human Biomonitoring: Development and Results)
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13 pages, 2043 KiB  
Article
Air, Dermal, and Urinary Metabolite Levels of Backpack and Tractor Sprayers Using the Herbicide Acetochlor in Thailand
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 622; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070622 - 18 Jul 2023
Viewed by 652
Abstract
Acetochlor is a chloroacetanilide selective pre-emergent herbicide used for controlling grass and broadleaf weeds in crops. This study compared the acetochlor exposures of backpack and tractor sprayers and assessed whether dermal or air exposures were more important contributors to the overall body burden [...] Read more.
Acetochlor is a chloroacetanilide selective pre-emergent herbicide used for controlling grass and broadleaf weeds in crops. This study compared the acetochlor exposures of backpack and tractor sprayers and assessed whether dermal or air exposures were more important contributors to the overall body burden as measured by urinary metabolites. Sixty sugarcane farmers in Nakhonsawan province, Thailand participated in the study, and breathing zone air and dermal patch samples were collected during spraying. Urine samples were collected before spraying, at the end of the spraying task, and on the day after spraying. For backpack and tractor sprayers, there was no significant difference in their breathing zone air concentrations, total body dermal samples, or urinary 2-methy-6-methyaniline (EMA) concentrations on the day after spraying. In addition, although most backpack and tractor sprayers wore long pants and long sleeve shirts, they were still exposed to acetochlor, as evidenced by a significant increase in the urinary EMA from before spraying (GM = 11.5 µg/g creatinine) to after spraying (GM = 88.5 µg/g creatinine) to the next day (GM = 111.0 µg/g creatinine). Breathing zone air samples were significantly correlated with those of total body dermal patch samples and with urinary EMA concentrations after spraying. This suggests that both air and dermal exposure contribute to urinary EMA levels. Full article
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23 pages, 4791 KiB  
Article
Metals and Metalloid Concentrations in Fish, Its Spatial Distribution in PPC, Philippines and the Attributable Risks
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 621; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070621 - 18 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1428
Abstract
Fish is an important source of protein in human meals around the world. However, the fish that we are eating may be contaminated with toxicants such as metals and metalloids (MMs), which may pose health risks to consumers. Information on MMs content in [...] Read more.
Fish is an important source of protein in human meals around the world. However, the fish that we are eating may be contaminated with toxicants such as metals and metalloids (MMs), which may pose health risks to consumers. Information on MMs content in fishes and their potential spatial distribution scenarios would provide knowledge to the community to create strategies and protect human health. Hence, this study assessed and determined the health risk levels of MMs in both brackish and marine water fish (BMF) in Puerto Princesa City (PPC), Palawan Province, Philippines. PPC has an existing abandoned open mine pit near the PPC coastline called the “pit lake”. The concentrations of As, Ba, Cu, Fe, Mn, Hg, and Zn in fishes were analyzed using portable Olympus Vanta X-ray Fluorescence (pXRF), and the spatial distribution of MMs concentrations in BMF was analyzed using a GIS (geographic information system). Fishes were sampled from fishing boat landing sites and nearby seafood markets. The results revealed that the concentration of MMs in marine fish was generally higher than the brackish water fish. It was recorded that the Hg concentration in marine water fish meat was higher than in brackish water fish meat. The Mn concentration in marine water fish exceeded the permissible limits set by international bodies. An elevated concentration of Mn in BMF was detected across the northern part of PPC, and an elevated concentration of Hg in marine fishes was recorded in the southeast area, where the fish landing sites are located. Ba was also detected in BMF across the southern part of PPC. Moreover, an elevated concentration of Cu was detected in MBF in the northeast and in marine fish in the southeastern area of PPC. Further, this paper elaborates the non-carcinogenic and carcinogenic risks of these fishes to the PPC population and tourists with respect to the MMs content in fish meat. Full article
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14 pages, 1394 KiB  
Article
Accumulation of Trace Metals in Fruits from Mango and Syzygium guineense Growing in Residential Households from a Contaminated District of Lubumbashi (DR Congo): Is Fruit Consumption at Risk?
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 620; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070620 - 17 Jul 2023
Viewed by 868
Abstract
Copper smelting has been a source of soil contamination with trace metals in Penga Penga (Lubumbashi). The residents are exposed to trace metal ingestion, and planting trees is challenging in such soil conditions. Nevertheless, planting trees in former household dumps or using various [...] Read more.
Copper smelting has been a source of soil contamination with trace metals in Penga Penga (Lubumbashi). The residents are exposed to trace metal ingestion, and planting trees is challenging in such soil conditions. Nevertheless, planting trees in former household dumps or using various types of amendments has allowed the provisioning of fruits in a few residences. From the perspective of scaling up the process, a survey has been conducted with the aim of assessing the effectiveness of the planting processes on the trace metal content in fruits and leaves of Mangifera indica L. and Syzygium guineense (Willd) DC. Samples were collected from residential households in Penga Penga and Kalebuka (a non-polluted suburb). The bioconcentration factor (BCF) and the safe weekly consumption (SWC) were calculated for each species. The results showed higher values of total and soluble concentrations of Cu, Pb, and Zn in the rhizosphere of the two species in Penga Penga. Metal concentrations were higher in the fruits and leaves from Penga Penga, with 47% of samples above the FAO and WHO thresholds (vs. 18.5% in Kalebuka). The BCF values were below 1, demonstrating the effectiveness of the process in reducing the translocation of metals to leaves and fruits. Recommendations from the SWC limit Pb consumption to 9 kg for mango flesh and Cd consumption to 6.6 kg for S. guineense fruits in Penga Penga (vs. 78 kg and 68 kg in Kalebuka). Finally, the results of this study provide interesting lessons for the scaling up and technical itinerary of planting trees in Penga Penga. Full article
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15 pages, 5948 KiB  
Article
Absorption and Distribution of Imidacloprid and Its Metabolites in Goldfish (Carassius auratus Linnaeus)
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 619; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070619 - 17 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 852
Abstract
Imidacloprid (IMI) is the first-generation neonicotinoid insecticide. But, the long-term use of IMI as a pesticide has caused severe water pollution. Recently, the toxicity of IMI to aquatic organisms has received increasing attention. This study aimed to investigate the absorption and distribution of [...] Read more.
Imidacloprid (IMI) is the first-generation neonicotinoid insecticide. But, the long-term use of IMI as a pesticide has caused severe water pollution. Recently, the toxicity of IMI to aquatic organisms has received increasing attention. This study aimed to investigate the absorption and distribution of IMI in various tissues (gills, intestine, liver, muscle, brain and gonads) of goldfish through short-term and continuous exposure tests over 28 days. The results of short-term exposure indicated that the concentration of IMI and its metabolites in tissues at the transfer stage decreased steadily after 1 day of 40 mg/L IMI water treatment and was below the detection limit after 3 days. Continuous exposure for 28 days at various treatment concentrations showed that the concentrations of IMI and its metabolites differed significantly among the different tissues of the goldfish. In the 20 mg/L treatment group (S1), the highest concentration of IMI was found in the liver (12.04 μg/gtissue), followed by the intestine (9.91 μg/gtissue), muscle (6.20 μg/gtissue), gill (6.11 μg/gtissue), gonads (5.22 μg/gtissue) and brain (2.87 μg/gtissue). In the 40 mg/L treatment group (S2), the order of the tissue concentrations was similar to that of the S1 group, with the highest concentration observed in the liver (12.04 μg/gtissue), followed by the intestine (9.91 μg/gtissue), muscle (6.20 μg/gtissue), gill (6.11 μg/gtissue), gonads (5.22 μg/gtissue) and brain (2.87 μg/gtissue). Furthermore, the study detected 5-hydroxy-IMI, IMI urea and 6-chloronicotinic acid in IMI metabolites in all tissues, while IMI was detected only in the intestine and liver. Overall, the results of this study contribute to a better understanding of the metabolic behavior of IMI in organisms and provide new data to support the assessment of IMI toxicity in fish. Full article
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13 pages, 1398 KiB  
Article
Evaluation of the Morphological, Physiological and Biochemical Effects Induced by Coragen 20 SC in Some Non-Target Species
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 618; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070618 - 17 Jul 2023
Viewed by 919
Abstract
Coragen 20 SC is an insecticide based on chlorantraniliprole that is applied on many crops. Considered an effective product with an incremental cost-benefit ratio, it has been widely used globally. Residual pesticides affect non-target organisms, so it is necessary to explore the possible [...] Read more.
Coragen 20 SC is an insecticide based on chlorantraniliprole that is applied on many crops. Considered an effective product with an incremental cost-benefit ratio, it has been widely used globally. Residual pesticides affect non-target organisms, so it is necessary to explore the possible effects induced by these xenobiotics on different species. This work aimed to assess some morphological, physiological and biochemical effects induced by Coragen 20 SC on two non-target species: Perca fluviatilis (Linné, 1758) and Triticum aestivum L. The concentrations used were the same for all tested species (0.0125, 0.025 and 0.05 mL L−1), and the experiments were of the acute, subchronic and chronic type. The toxicological effects of Coragen 20 SC on perch recorded behavioral changes, a decrease in respiratory rate and oxygen consumption, an increase in blood glucose levels and a decrease in the number of erythrocytes and leukocytes. The results obtained from the evaluation of Coragen 20 SC toxicity using the Triticum test indicate a weak to moderate phytotoxicity for the considered parameters at the applied doses. Only the assimilatory pigments were significantly modified at the concentration of 0.025 mL L−1 for the growth of the axial organs and the wet and dry weight, with the changes obtained not being statistically significant. Full article
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13 pages, 879 KiB  
Article
A Glow before Darkness: Toxicity of Glitter Particles to Marine Invertebrates
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 617; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070617 - 16 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1676
Abstract
Glitter particles are considered a model of microplastics, which are used in a wide range of products. In this study, we evaluated the toxicity of two types of glitter (green and white, with distinct chemical compositions) dispersions on the embryonic development of the [...] Read more.
Glitter particles are considered a model of microplastics, which are used in a wide range of products. In this study, we evaluated the toxicity of two types of glitter (green and white, with distinct chemical compositions) dispersions on the embryonic development of the sea urchins Echinometra lucunte, Arbacia lixula, and the mussel Perna perna. The Toxicity Identification and Evaluation (TIE) approach was used to identify possible chemicals related to toxicity. Glitter dispersions were prepared using 0.05% ethanol. The tested dispersions ranged from 50 to 500 mg/L. The white glitter was composed of a vinyl chloride–methyl acrylate copolymer. The effective concentrations of green glitter to 50% embryos (EC50) were 246.1 (235.8–256.4) mg/L to A. lixula, 23.0 (20.2–25.8) mg/L to P. perna and 105.9 (61.2–150.2) mg/L, whereas the EC50 of white glitter to E. lucunter was 272.2 (261.5–282.9) mg/L. The EC50 for P. perna could not be calculated; however, the lowest effect concentration was 10 mg/L—that was the lowest concentration tested. The filtered suspension of green glitter had Ag levels exceeding the legal standards for marine waters. TIE showed that metals, volatiles, and oxidant compounds contribute to toxicity. The results showed that glitter may adversely affect marine organisms; however, further studies are necessary to determine its environmental risks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Spotlight on the Ecotoxicological Impacts of Plastic Pollution)
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15 pages, 1515 KiB  
Article
Gender Differences in the Severity of Cadmium Nephropathy
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 616; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070616 - 15 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1190
Abstract
The excretion of β2-microglobulin (β2M) above 300 µg/g creatinine, termed tubulopathy, was regarded as the critical effect of chronic exposure to the metal pollutant cadmium (Cd). However, current evidence suggests that Cd may induce nephron atrophy, resulting in a [...] Read more.
The excretion of β2-microglobulin (β2M) above 300 µg/g creatinine, termed tubulopathy, was regarded as the critical effect of chronic exposure to the metal pollutant cadmium (Cd). However, current evidence suggests that Cd may induce nephron atrophy, resulting in a reduction in the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) below 60 mL/min/1.73 m2. Herein, these pathologies were investigated in relation to Cd exposure, smoking, diabetes, and hypertension. The data were collected from 448 residents of Cd-polluted and non-polluted regions of Thailand. The body burden of Cd, indicated by the mean Cd excretion (ECd), normalized to creatinine clearance (Ccr) as (ECd/Ccr) × 100 in women and men did not differ (3.21 vs. 3.12 µg/L filtrate). After adjustment of the confounding factors, the prevalence odds ratio (POR) for tubulopathy and a reduced eGFR were increased by 1.9-fold and 3.2-fold for every 10-fold rise in the Cd body burden. In women only, a dose–effect relationship was seen between β2M excretion (Eβ2M/Ccr) and ECd/Ccr (F = 3.431, η2 0.021). In men, Eβ2M/Ccr was associated with diabetes (β = 0.279). In both genders, the eGFR was inversely associated with Eβ2M/Ccr. The respective covariate-adjusted mean eGFR values were 16.5 and 12.3 mL/min/1.73 m2 lower in women and men who had severe tubulopathy ((Eβ2M/Ccr) × 100 ≥ 1000 µg/L filtrate). These findings indicate that women were particularly susceptible to the nephrotoxicity of Cd, and that the increment of Eβ2M/Ccr could be attributable mostly to Cd-induced impairment in the tubular reabsorption of the protein together with Cd-induced nephron loss, which is evident from an inverse relationship between Eβ2M/Ccr and the eGFR. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cadmium and Trace Elements Toxicity)
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16 pages, 1180 KiB  
Article
Effect of Aging on Physicochemical Properties and Size Distribution of PET Microplastic: Influence on Adsorption of Diclofenac and Toxicity Assessment
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 615; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070615 - 14 Jul 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1023
Abstract
Microplastics (MPs) are detected in the water, sediments, as well as biota, mainly as a consequence of the degradation of plastic products/waste under environmental conditions. Due to their potentially harmful effects on ecosystems and organisms, MPs are regarded as emerging pollutants. The highly [...] Read more.
Microplastics (MPs) are detected in the water, sediments, as well as biota, mainly as a consequence of the degradation of plastic products/waste under environmental conditions. Due to their potentially harmful effects on ecosystems and organisms, MPs are regarded as emerging pollutants. The highly problematic aspect of MPs is their interaction with organic and inorganic pollutants; MPs can act as vectors for their further transport in the environment. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of ageing on the changes in physicochemical properties and size distribution of polyethylene terephthalate (PET), as well as to investigate the adsorption capacity of pristine and aged PET MPs, using pharmaceutical diclofenac (DCF) as a model organic pollutant. An ecotoxicity assessment of such samples was performed. Characterization of the PET samples (bottles and films) was carried out to detect the thermooxidative aging effects. The influence of the temperature and MP dosage on the extent of adsorption of DCF was elucidated by employing an empirical modeling approach using the response surface methodology (RSM). Aquatic toxicity was investigated by examining the green microalgae Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata. It was found that the thermooxidative ageing process resulted in mild surface changes in PET MPs, which were reflected in changes in hydrophobicity, the amount of amorphous phase, and the particle size distribution. The fractions of the particle size distribution in the range 100–500 μm for aged PET are higher due to the increase in amorphous phase. The proposed mechanisms of interactions between DCF and PET MPs are hydrophobic and π–π interactions as well as hydrogen bonding. RSM revealed that the adsorption favors low temperatures and low dosages of MP. The combination of MPs and DCF exhibited higher toxicity than the individual components. Full article
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14 pages, 1464 KiB  
Article
Metal Levels in Delaware Bay Horseshoe Crab Eggs from the Surface Reflect Metals in Egg Clutches Laid beneath the Sand
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 614; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070614 - 14 Jul 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 858
Abstract
Understanding variations in metal levels in biota geographically and under different environmental conditions is essential to determining risk to organisms themselves and to their predators. It is often difficult to determine food chain relationships because predators may eat several different prey types. Horseshoe [...] Read more.
Understanding variations in metal levels in biota geographically and under different environmental conditions is essential to determining risk to organisms themselves and to their predators. It is often difficult to determine food chain relationships because predators may eat several different prey types. Horseshoe crab (Limulus polyphemus) eggs form the basis for a complex food web in Delaware Bay, New Jersey, USA. Female horseshoe crabs lay thumb-sized clutches of eggs, several cm below the surface, and often dislodge previously laid eggs that are brought to the surface by wave action, where they are accessible and critical food for migrant shorebirds. This paper compares metal and metalloid (chromium [Cr], cadmium [Cd], lead [Pb], mercury [Hg], arsenic [As] and selenium [Se]) concentrations in horseshoe crab eggs collected on the surface with concentrations in eggs from clutches excavated from below the sand surface, as well as examining metals in eggs from different parts of the Bay. The eggs were all collected in May 2019, corresponding to the presence of the four main species of shorebirds migrating through Delaware Bay. These migrating birds eat almost entirely horseshoe crab eggs during their stopover in Delaware Bay, and there are differences in the levels of metals in blood of different shorebirds. These differences could be due to whether they have access to egg clutches below sand (ruddy turnstones, Arenaria interpres) or only to eggs on the surface (the threatened red knot [Calidris canutus rufa] and other species of shorebirds). Correlations between metals in clutches were also examined. Except for As and Cd, there were no significant differences between the metals in crab egg clutches and eggs on the surface that shorebirds, gulls, and other predators eat. There were significant locational differences in metal levels in horseshoe crab eggs (except for Pb), with most metals being highest in the sites on the lower portion of Delaware Bay. Most metals in crab eggs have declined since studies were conducted in the mid-1990s but were similar to levels in horseshoe crab eggs in 2012. The data continue to provide important monitoring and assessment information for a keystone species in an ecosystem that supports many species, including threatened and declining shorebird species during spring migration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The 10th Anniversary of Toxics)
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15 pages, 9987 KiB  
Article
Uncertainties in Pollution and Risk Assessments of Heavy Metals in Lake Sediments Using Regional Background Soils in China
Toxics 2023, 11(7), 613; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11070613 - 14 Jul 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 868
Abstract
Background soils are frequently utilized as a surrogate to assess pollution levels and environmental risks of heavy metals in Chinese lakes. However, there remains a lack of understanding regarding the reliability and uncertainty of such assessments. Here, we determined heavy metals (As, Cd, [...] Read more.
Background soils are frequently utilized as a surrogate to assess pollution levels and environmental risks of heavy metals in Chinese lakes. However, there remains a lack of understanding regarding the reliability and uncertainty of such assessments. Here, we determined heavy metals (As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb, and Zn) in sediment cores from five rural lakes in North China to evaluate the reliability and uncertainty of the assessments using background soils by comparing them with assessments based on background sediments. Comparative studies reveal large uncertainties in the assessments using background soils. Among these metals, uncertainties for Hg and Cd are relatively large, whereas those for the other metals are minor. This discrepancy is due to the considerably higher natural variability of Hg and Cd in soils and sediments in comparison to the other metals. Generally, assessments utilizing background soils underestimate pollution levels and risks of Hg but overestimate those of Cd in these lakes. Despite limited human activities around the lakes, they still received a considerable influx of heavy metals via regional atmospheric transport. Assessments of the nine metals indicate moderate to considerable ecological risks in these lakes. The risks are contributed primarily (78–89%) by Hg and Cd. This study underscores the substantial uncertainties in assessing heavy metal pollution and risks using regional background soils and emphasizes the importance of controlling atmospheric emissions of Hg and Cd to mitigate pollution in rural and remote water bodies in China. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Exposome Analysis and Risk Assessment)
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