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J Toxicol Environ Health. 1981 Jun;7(6):991-1000.

Uptake of benzo[a]pyrene by gonadal tissue of flatfish (family Pleuronectidae) and its effects on subsequent egg development.


Accumulation of benzo[a]pyrene (BaP) by sexually mature flatfish gonad, its transfer to developing gametes, and its subsequent effects on developing embryos were studied. Thin-layer chromatography revealed both unmetabolized BaP and polar metabolites in the ovary, wolffian ducts, oocytes, and semen of English sole 24 h after ip injection with 200 microCi [3H]BaP. Concentrations of BaP and its metabolites were 3-11 times higher in oocytes and semen than in gonadal tissue. Fertilized eggs from flathead sole that had been fed 4.0 mg BaP 5 h before spawning demonstrated a significantly lower (p less than 0.001) hatching success (11.9%) than eggs from control fish (56.6%). Morphological abnormalities were found in only 1.6% of control embryos but in 5.6% of embryos from treated females.

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