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Cadmium Accumulation and Pathological Alterations in the Midgut Gland of Terrestrial Snail Helix pomatia L. from a Zinc Smelter Area: Role of Soil pH

Włostowski, Tadeusz, Kozłowski, Paweł, Łaszkiewicz-Tiszczenko, Barbara, Oleńska, Ewa
Bulletin of environmental contamination and toxicology 2016 v.96 no.4 pp. 484-489
Helix pomatia, acid soils, cadmium, lipid peroxidation, metallothionein, midgut, snails, soil pH, toxicity, zinc
The purpose of this study was to determine whether cadmium (Cd) accumulation and toxicity in the midgut gland of Helix pomatia snails living in a Cd-contaminated area were related to soil pH. Toxic responses in the midgut gland (i.e., increased vacuolization and lipid peroxidation) occurred in H. pomatia snails exhibiting the highest Cd levels in the gland (265–274 µg/g dry wt) and living on acidic soil (pH 5.3–5.5), while no toxicity was observed in snails accumulating less Cd (90 µg/g) and ranging on neutral soil (pH 7.0), despite the fact that total soil Cd was similar in the two cases. The accumulation of Cd in the gland was directly related to the water extractable Cd in soil, which in turn correlated inversely with soil pH, indicating that this factor had a significant effect on tissue Cd. It appeared further that the occurrence of Cd toxicity was associated with low levels of metallothionein in the gland of snails ranging on acidic soil.