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Environ Int. 2014 Jan;62:78-85. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2013.10.006. Epub 2013 Oct 29.

Environmental concentration of nonylphenol alters the development of urogenital and visceral organs in avian model.

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EHESP Rennes, Sorbonne Paris Cité, Avenue du Professeur Léon Bernard - CS 74312, 35043 Rennes Cedex, France; INSERM, UMR IRSET Institut de recherche sur la santé l'environnement et le travail - 1085, LERES, Rennes, France; Université de Nîmes, Rue du docteur Georges Salan, 30000 Nîmes, France. Electronic address:


Nonylphenol (NP) is an endocrine disruptor with harmful effects including feminization and carcinogenesis on various organisms. This substance is a degradation product of nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEO) that is used in several industrial and agricultural processes. In this paper, we examined the assessment of NP exposure on chick embryo development, using a concentration consistent with the environmental concentrations of NP. With this aim, NP (between 0.1 and 50 μg/egg) was injected into the yolk of egg through a small needle hole in the shell. We report the effect of NP on chick reproductive system development although the effect we observed is lower than those observed by exposition to other endocrine disruptors. However, histological analysis highlighted a decrease of intraluminal seminiferous surface area in 64.12% of case (P=0.0086) and an heterogeneous organization of the renal tubules when 10 μg/egg were injected. Moreover, an impairment of liver development with an abnormal bile spillage was observed when higher concentration of NP was injected (50 μg/egg).


Chick embryo; Environment; Estrogenic effect; Nonylphenol

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