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Chemosphere. 2007 Oct;69(6):849-55. Epub 2007 Jul 27.

In vitro effect of agriculture pollutants and their joint action on Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata acid phosphatase.

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Laboratório de Ecotoxicologia e Biossegurança, Embrapa Meio Ambiente, CP 69, CEP 13820-000, Jaguariúna, São Paulo, Brazil.


Acid phosphatase plays important roles in algae metabolism such as availability and recycling of inorganic phosphate, autophagic digestive processes and fertilization. Chemicals released into the environment from agriculture activities may impair algae phosphatase activity. The aim of this work was to evaluate the in vitro effect of twenty-four organic compounds and six metals used as pesticides, or present as contaminants in sewage sludge, on the acid phosphatase activity extracted from Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata. Results demonstrated that only the linear surfactant alkyl benzenesulphonate (LAS) and the heavy metals Hg(2+), Al(3+) and Cu(2+) markedly altered (50%) the enzyme activity. Join action inhibition studies indicated that Hg(2+) was more potent inhibitor than Al(3+) or LAS, and that the Hg(2+)+Al(3+) and Hg(2+)+LAS mixtures have, respectively, additive and slight antagonism effects. Copper, which demonstrated an activator effect when preincubated with the enzyme, behaved as a slight antagonist for the inhibitor effect of Hg(2+).

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