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Aquat Toxicol. 2012 Feb;108:94-105. doi: 10.1016/j.aquatox.2011.10.015. Epub 2011 Oct 28.

Biological effects of the anti-parasitic chemotherapeutant emamectin benzoate on a non-target crustacean, the spot prawn (Pandalus platyceros Brandt, 1851) under laboratory conditions.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry & Microbiology, University of Victoria, P.O. Box 3055, Stn CSC, Victoria, BC, Canada.


The potential impact of commercial salmon aquaculture along the coast of British Columbia on the health of non-target marine wildlife is of growing concern. In the current initiative, the biological effects on gene expression within spot prawn (Pandalus platyceros) exposed to the sea lice controlling agent, emamectin benzoate (EB; 0.1-4.8 mg/kg sediment), were investigated. A mean sediment/water partitioning coefficient (K(p)) was determined to be 21.81 and significant levels of EB were detected in the tail muscle tissue in all exposed animals. Animals selected for the experiment did not have eggs and were of similar weight. Significant mortality was observed within 8 days of EB treatment at concentrations between 0.1 and 0.8 mg/kg and there was no effect of EB on molting. Twelve spot prawn cDNA sequences were isolated from the tail muscle either by directed cloning or subtractive hybridization of control versus EB exposed tissues. Three of the transcripts most affected by EB exposure matched sequences encoding the 60S ribosomal protein L22, spliceosome RNA helicase WM6/UAP56, and the intracellular signal mediator histidine triad nucleotide binding protein 1 suggesting that translation, transcription regulation, and apoptosis pathways were impacted. The mRNA encoding the molting enzyme, β-N-acetylglucosaminidase, was not affected by EB treatment. However, the expression of this transcript was extremely variable making it unsuitable for effects assessment. The results suggest that short-term exposure to EB can impact biological processes within this non-target crustacean.

Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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