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The joint toxicity effect of five antibiotics and dibutyl phthalate to luminescent bacteria (Vibrio fischeri)

Wei, Sheng, Wang, Fenghe, Chen, Yajun, Lan, Tao, Zhang, Shengtian
Environmental science and pollution research international 2018 v.25 no.26 pp. 26504-26511
Vibrio fischeri, aquatic ecosystems, bacteria, chlortetracycline, dibutyl phthalate, luminescence, median effective concentration, models, oxytetracycline, pollutants, risk, sulfadiazine, sulfamerazine, synergism, toxicity
Antibiotics and phthalate esters are two kinds of emerging pollutants and are ubiquitous in the aquatic ecosystem. To date, few studies analyzed the combined toxicity of the mixtures of antibiotics and phthalate esters, and their joint toxicity effect mode remains unknown. Here, we investigated the single and joint toxicity of dibutyl phthalate (DBP) and five antibiotics, namely, oxytetracycline hydrochloride (OTC), chlortetracycline hydrochloride (CTC), sulfamethazine (SMZ), sulfamerazine (SMR), and sulfadiazine (SD), to luminescent bacteria of Vibrio fischeri. The median effect concentration (EC₅₀) values of the test chemicals were ranked as CTC (6.67 mg/L) > OTC (25.12 mg/L) > SD (67.61 mg/L) > SMR (141.51 mg/L) > DBP (148.38 mg/L) > SMZ (245.07 mg/L). The joint toxicities of the binary mixtures of antibiotics and DBP were evaluated by the concentration addition (CA) and independent action (IA) models. The joint toxicity effects of CTC-DBP, OTC-DBP, SMZ-DBP, SMR-DBP, and SD-DBP all appeared to be synergism. Our study revealed that sulfonamides combined with DBP could be as toxic as or even more toxic than tetracycline. Thus, the joint toxicity effect should be considered when assessing the ecological risks of binary or multicomponent pollutants.