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Gen Comp Endocrinol. 2018 Feb 1;257:255-263. doi: 10.1016/j.ygcen.2017.06.020. Epub 2017 Jun 23.

Endocrine disruption of phenanthrene in the protogynous dusky grouper Epinephelus marginatus (Serranidae: Perciformes).

Author information

1
Laboratório de Metabolismo e Reprodução de Organismos Aquáticos, Dep. de Fisiologia, Instituto de Biociências, Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil; Centro de Biologia Marinha (CEBIMar), Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil.
2
Laboratorio de Ecotoxicología Acuática, Dept. de Biodiversidad y Biologia Experimental, FCEN, Universidad de Buenos Aires & IBBEA, CONICET-UBA, Argentina.
3
Laboratório de Metabolismo e Reprodução de Organismos Aquáticos, Dep. de Fisiologia, Instituto de Biociências, Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil; Centro de Biologia Marinha (CEBIMar), Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil. Electronic address: renata.fish@gmail.com.

Abstract

The dusky grouper Epinephelus marginatus is a protogynous hermaphrodite fish, that maintains high levels of plasma steroids as juveniles, as substrates for sex inversion. These fish are exposed to marine pollution from oil spills during cargo handling. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), such as phenanthrene (Phe), are the main crude oil components and are toxic to fish, acting as endocrine disruptors (ED). This is the first study that investigated impacts of Phe as an ED in E. marginatus juveniles. An in vivo sublethal exposure (96h) to Phe was carried out at two concentrations (0.1mg/L and 1mg/L); exposure to the vehicle (ethanol; ETOH) was also performed. Plasma levels of 17β-estradiol (E2), testosterone (T) and 11-ketotestosterone (11-KT) were measured by ELISA. Gonads, liver and spleen were processed for histological analysis. In an in vitro bioassay, gonad fragments were incubated with Phe (8.91mg/L) or ETOH. Steroid levels in the culture media were measured by ELISA. The in vivo exposure to Phe triggered an increase of the area of the hepatocytes, increased number of melanomacrophagic centers and hemosiderosis in the spleen; ETOH induced similar effects on spleen. E2 and T levels did not change in plasma or in vitro media. In plasma, ETOH decreased 11-KT levels. Phenanthrene sharply reduced 11-KT levels in vitro. Although in vivo bioassay results were not unequivocal owing to ethanol effects, Phe might disrupt steroidogenesis in juvenile grouper, possibly causing dysfunctions during sex change and gonadal maturity, considering the importance of 11-KT in developing ovaries.

KEYWORDS:

Acute toxicity; Gonadal steroids; PAH; Protogynous hermaphroditism

PMID:
28652135
DOI:
10.1016/j.ygcen.2017.06.020
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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