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Effects of water borne cadmium on biomarker enzymes and metallothioneins in Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus

Authors:

LWHU Chandrasekera,

Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya., LK
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A Pathiratne ,

Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya., LK
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KAS Pathiratne

Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya., LK
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Abstract

Cadmium is widely used in modern industry and ranks among the most toxic metals in the aquatic ecosystems. In the present study, activities of several biomarker enzymes viz. ethoxyresorufin O-deethylase (EROD), glutathione S-transferase (GST) and cholinesterase (ChE) were determined in Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) at different waterborne Cd22+ exposure levels (0, 0.001, 0.005, 0.01, 0.1, and 1 mg/L for 28 days) to evaluate the potential influence of environmental cadmium on these enzymes. In addition, hepatic metallothionein (MT) levels in these fish at different waterborne Cd2+ exposure levels were also studied to evaluate their response to waterborne cadmium exposure. The results revealed that hepatic MT levels in the fish exposed to Cd2+ increased 2-26 fold depending on the exposure level and duration. Hence hepatic MT in Nile tilapia is a sensitive biomarker to indicate cadmium pollution in the natural environments. Continuous exposure of fish to ≤ 0.01 mg/L of Cd2+ had no significant effect on hepatic EROD, hepatic GST and brain and muscle ChE activities whereas exposure to ≥ 0.1 mg/L Cd2+ evoked time dependent significant depression of hepatic EROD (41-55%) activity. Brain and muscle ChE activities of the fish exposed to 1 mg/L Cd2+ were depressed to 24-32% and 33-35% respectively. Results revealed that high concentrations of Cd2+ in the natural environments could inhibit the basal activities of the hepatic EROD and brain and muscle ChE in Nile tilapia affecting the normal functioning of these biomarker enzymes and influencing the biomarker response to targeted organic pollutants in the environment.

Keywords: Biomarkers, cadmium, metallothionein, tilapia.  

doi:10.4038/jnsfsr.v36i4.270  

Journal of the National Science Foundation of Sri Lanka 36 (4) 315-322

How to Cite: Chandrasekera, L., Pathiratne, A. and Pathiratne, K., 2008. Effects of water borne cadmium on biomarker enzymes and metallothioneins in Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus. Journal of the National Science Foundation of Sri Lanka, 36(4), pp.315–322. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jnsfsr.v36i4.270
Published on 30 Dec 2008.
Peer Reviewed

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