Send to

Choose Destination
J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2006 May;69(10):967-94.

CYP1A induction and blue sac disease in early life stages of white suckers (Catostomus commersoni) exposed to oil sands.

Author information

Queen's University, School of Environmental Studies, Kingston, Ontario, Canada.


The objectives of this study were to evaluate the influence of natural oil sands on the early developmental stages of white sucker (Catostomus commersoni) and to determine whether biochemical responses in this species were similar to native fish caught in the Athabasca Oil Sands area. Early life stage (ELS) sediment toxicity tests were conducted using controls, reference sediments, natural oil sands, and industrially contaminated (wastewater pond) sediments collected from sites along the Athabasca River, Alberta (Canada). Eggs and larvae were observed for mortality, hatching, deformities, growth, and cytochrome P-4501A (CYP1A) activity using immunohistochemistry. E-Nat-, S-Nat-, and wastewater pond sediment-exposed groups showed significant premature hatching, reduced growth, and exposure-dependent increases in ELS mortality and larval malformations relative to controls. The most common larval deformities included edemas (pericardial, yolk sac, and subepidermal), hemorrhages, and spinal defects. Juveniles exposed to oil sands and wastewater pond sediments (96 h) demonstrated significantly increased 7-ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD) activity (30- to 50-fold) as compared to controls. Reference sediment-exposed groups and water controls demonstrated reliable embryo and larval survival, minimal malformations, and negligible CYP1A staining. These observed signs of blue sac disease (ELS mortality, malformations, growth reductions, CYP1A activity induction) may produce deleterious reproductive effects in natural fish populations exposed to oil sands mixtures.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center