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Chemosphere. 2003 Aug;52(7):1125-33.

Toxicity of fluoranthene and its biodegradation metabolites to aquatic organisms.

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Jozef Stefan Institute, Jamova 39, SI-1001 Ljubljana, Slovenia.


The toxicity of nine stable products of the biodegradation of fluoranthene with the pure bacterial strain Pasteurella sp. IFA was studied. For their quantification, an improved analytical procedure with two-step liquid-liquid extraction, derivatisation and gas chromatographic-mass spectrometric detection was used. Growth inhibition and immobility tests for fluoranthene and its metabolites were carried out using algae (Scenedesmus subspicatus), bacteria (Pseudomonas putida) and crustaceans (Daphnia magna and Thamnocephalus platyurus). Tests using the alga S. subspicatus revealed that with the exception of 9-hydroxyfluorene, which was only four times less toxic than fluoranthene, all the other metabolites were 37 to approximately 3000 times less toxic than the parent material. P. putida cells were resistant to fluoranthene and its primary metabolites, but were inhibited by low molecular weight intermediates, especially benzoic acid. Fluoranthene was not toxic to T. Platyurus, but was toxic to D. magna. Its primary metabolites (including 9-fluorenone and 9-hydroxyfluorene) were toxic to D. magna, and a low molecular weight metabolite (2-carboxybenzaldehyde) was highly toxic to T. platyurus.

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