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PLoS One. 2012;7(12):e51473. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0051473. Epub 2012 Dec 10.

Low frequency vibrations induce malformations in two aquatic species in a frequency-, waveform-, and direction-specific manner.

Author information

1
Biology Department, Center for Regenerative and Developmental Biology, Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts, USA.

Abstract

Environmental toxicants such as industrial wastes, air particulates from machinery and transportation vehicles, and pesticide run-offs, as well as many chemicals, have been widely studied for their effects on human and wildlife populations. Yet other potentially harmful environmental pollutants such as electromagnetic pulses, noise and vibrations have remained incompletely understood. Because developing embryos undergo complex morphological changes that can be affected detrimentally by alterations in physical forces, they may be particularly susceptible to exposure to these types of pollutants. We investigated the effects of low frequency vibrations on early embryonic development of two aquatic species, Xenopus laevis (frogs) and Danio rerio (zebrafish), specifically focusing on the effects of varying frequencies, waveforms, and applied direction. We observed treatment-specific effects on the incidence of neural tube defects, left-right patterning defects and abnormal tail morphogenesis in Xenopus tadpoles. Additionally, we found that low frequency vibrations altered left-right patterning and tail morphogenesis, but did not induce neural tube defects, in zebrafish. The results of this study support the conclusion that low frequency vibrations are toxic to aquatic vertebrates, with detrimental effects observed in two important model species with very different embryonic architectures.

PMID:
23251546
PMCID:
PMC3519728
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0051473
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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