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Reprod Toxicol. 2006 Oct;22(3):449-54. Epub 2006 Jun 13.

Effects of nonylphenol on juveniles and adults in the grey mullet, Liza aurata.

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  • 1Dipartimento di Scienze del Mare, Universit√† Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona, Italy.


The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of nonylphenol (NP), an environmental pollutant known to have estrogenic activity, on grey mullets. Juvenile and adult physiology was monitored by the expression of vitellogenin (VTG), which is commonly induced by estrogenic pollutants, and cytochrome P4501A1(CYP1A1) as a first signal of detoxification. The dose-response estrogenic effects of NP (25, 100, 1000 microg/l) on hepatic VTG transcript and plasma protein levels, as well as on CYP1A1 transcription and its associated ethoxyresorufin O-deethylase (EROD) activity, were assessed in juvenile Liza aurata; 17beta-estradiol (E2; 2 microg/l) treatment for 1 week served as positive control. In addition, we investigated VTG and CYP1A1 expression in adult males injected with two NP at 0.25 or 250 mg/kg body weight relative to 0.07 mg/kg of E2 as a positive control. Juvenile exposure to NP failed to induce a measurable VTG response. In the adult fish, NP exerted estrogenic effects only at the highest dose injected. E2 treatment elicited VTG induction only in adults in a time-related manner. In contrast, NP treatment induced a dose-dependent decrease in CYP1A1 response in both juveniles and adults. An inhibitory effect of E2 on CYP1A1 was evident in all treatment groups as well. These data suggest that, in biomonitoring studies, testing the expression of different biomarkers may provide a more realistic picture of the environmental conditions.

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