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Metal bioaccumulation and oxidative stress in yellow perch (Perca flavescens) collected from eight lakes along a metal contamination gradient (Cd, Cu, Zn, Ni)

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Links among metal exposure, metal accumulation, and metal-induced effects were explored in indigenous yellow perch (Perca flavescens) collected from eight lakes located along a metal concentration gradient in two mining regions. Fish exposure to Cd, Cu, Ni, and Zn was estimated on the basis of calculated free metal ion concentrations in lake waters. Hepatic metal concentrations were determined and various markers of oxidative stress were measured to assess metal effects in liver cells. Accumulated metals were not consistently related to ambient free metal ion concentrations, possibly because of unaccounted for fluctuations in lake water metal concentrations. Accumulated metals were associated with limited oxidative stress in perch livers, as evidenced by reductions in glutathione concentrations and glutathione reductase activities. However, this stress appeared to be minor, since increasing hepatic Cu concentrations were associated with reduced lipid peroxidation, a response opposite to that predicted from basic principles. Our results suggest that oxidative stress will not have direct repercussions on the health of the perch at the individual level. We speculate that the observed increase in metallothionein concentrations with increasing accumulated metals might afford protection against reactive oxygen species.

Des spécimens de perchaude jaune (Perca flavescens), récoltés dans huit lacs localisés le long d'un gradient de contamination métallique dans deux régions minières, ont permis d'explorer les liens entre l'exposition aux métaux, leur bioaccumulation et la manifestation de stress oxydatif. L'exposition à quatre métaux (Cd, Cu, Ni et Zn) a été évaluée en dosant les métaux dissous dans chaque lac et en calculant les concentrations d'ions métalliques libres. Les concentrations de métaux et de divers indicateurs de stress oxydatif ont été mesurées dans le foie des poissons, pour y évaluer la bioaccumulation et les effets induits par les métaux accumulés. Les métaux accumulés dans le foie étaient associés à une baisse de la concentration de glutathion et de l'activité de l'enzyme glutathion réductase, suggérant un certain stress oxydatif. Ce stress semble cependant limité, la peroxydation lipidique ayant diminué en fonction de la concentration hépatique en Cu, une réponse contraire aux prédictions. D'après nos résultats, le stress oxydatif ne devrait pas avoir de répercussions directes sur les perchaudes au niveau des individus. Il est possible que l'augmentation des concentrations en métallothionéine, qui se produit le long du gradient de contamination, confère une certaine protection contre les espèces réactives responsables du stress oxydatif.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2005-03-01

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  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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