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Ecotoxicol Environ Saf. 2015 May;115:26-32. doi: 10.1016/j.ecoenv.2015.01.034. Epub 2015 Feb 7.

Biochemical responses, morphometric changes, genotoxic effects and CYP1A expression in the armored catfish Pterygoplichthys anisitsi after 15 days of exposure to mineral diesel and biodiesel.

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Departamento de Química e Ciências Ambientais, IBILCE, UNESP, São José do Rio Preto, SP, Brasil.
Laboratório de Biologia Molecular Ambiental-BioMA, Instituto de Biofísica Carlos Chagas Filho-IBCCF, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro-UFRJ, Brazil.
Centro de Estudo de Quelônios (CEQ) e Laboratório de Hemoglobinas de Genética das Doenças Hematológicas (LHGDH), IBILCE, UNESP, São José do Rio Preto, SP, Brasil.
Department of Environmental Sciences, University of California, Riverside, 3401Watkins Dr, Riverside, CA 92521, USA.
Departamento de Química e Ciências Ambientais, IBILCE, UNESP, São José do Rio Preto, SP, Brasil. Electronic address:


Despite being considered friendlier to the environment, biodiesel fuel can be harmful to aquatic organisms, especially when combined with petroleum diesel fuel. In this work we evaluated the effects of mineral diesel fuel containing increasing concentrations of biodiesel (5% and 20%, namely B5 and B20) and pure biodiesel (B100), at concentrations of 0.001 and 0.01mLL(-1), after 15 days of exposure, in armored catfish (Pterygoplichtys anisitsi). Toxicity tests were also performed to estimate LC50 values (96h) for each compound. Biotransformation enzymes [ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD), and glutathione S-transferase (GST)] as well as oxidative stress markers (superoxide dismutase, SOD, catalase, CAT, glutathione peroxidase, GPx, and the level of lipid peroxidation) were measured in liver and gills after treatment. Genotoxic effects were also accessed in erythrocytes using the comet assay and by evaluating the frequency of micronuclei formation. Further, the mRNA of cytochrome P450 1A (CYP1A) was also measured in liver. Mortality was not observed even exposure to concentrations as high as 6.0mLL(-1). EROD and GST activities were increased after B5 and B20 treatments; however, CYP1A mRNA induction was not observed. SOD and CAT activities were decreased, but GPx was significantly higher for all treatments in gills. There were no significant changes in lipid peroxidation, but genotoxicity markers revealed that all treatments increased comet scores. Fuels B5 and B20 increased micronuclei frequency. Our results indicate that despite being less toxic, biodiesel may cause sublethal alterations in fish that may alter long term health.


Biodiesel; Biotransformation enzyme; CYP1A; Catfish; Genotoxicity; Oxidative stress

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