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Accumulation and biochemical effects of microcystin-LR on the Patagonian pejerrey (Odontesthes hatcheri) fed with the toxic cyanobacteria Microcystis aeruginosa

Bieczynski, Flavia, Bianchi, Virginia A., Luquet, Carlos M.
Fish physiology and biochemistry 2013 v.39 no.5 pp. 1309-1321
Microcystis aeruginosa, Odontesthes, catalase, chromatography, fish feeds, freshwater fish, glutathione transferase, lipid peroxidation, liver, mass spectrometry, microcystin-LR, phosphoprotein phosphatase, proteins, toxicity
We studied accumulation and biochemical effects of microcystin-LR (MCLR) in Odontesthes hatcheri after dietary administration of the cyanobacteria Microcystis aeruginosa (1.3 μg MCLR/g body mass, incorporated in standard fish food). After 12 h, MCLR content in liver did not differ between fish fed with crushed or intact cells, demonstrating O. hatcheri’s capacity to digest cyanobacteria and absorb MCLR. In the second experiment, fish received toxic cells, non-toxic cells, or control food; MCLR accumulation was monitored for 48 h. Protein phosphatase 1 (PP1), catalase (CAT), glutathione-S-transferase (GST) activities, and lipid peroxidation (as MDA) were measured in liver and intestine. Methanol-extractable MCLR was determined by PP1 inhibition assay (PPIA); extractable and protein-bound MCLR were measured by Lemieux oxidation-gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). MCLR accumulated rapidly up to 22.9 and 9.4 μg MCLR/g in intestine and liver, respectively, followed by a decreasing tendency. Protein-bound MCLR represented 66 to ca. 100 % of total MCLR in both tissues. PP1 activity remained unchanged in intestine but was increased in liver of MCLR treated fish.CAT and GST activities and MDA content were significantly increased by MCLR only in liver. We conclude that O. hatcheri is able to digest cyanobacteria, accumulating MCLR mostly bound to proteins. Our data suggest that this freshwater fish can be adversely affected by cyanobacterial blooms. However, the rapid decrease of the detectable MCLR in both tissues could imply that sublethal toxin accumulation is rapidly reversed.