Piscine micronucleus assay and the evidence of environmental degradation: the case of catfish from Brazilian tropical estuaries / Bioensaio de micronúcleo em peixes e evidências de degradação ambientai: o caso dos bagres de estuários tropicais brasileiros

Lígia Maria Borges Marques Santana, Fiamma Eugênia Lemos Abreu, Denis M. S. Abessa


Assessing micronuclei (MN) rates in fish blood cells is a useful, fast and cheap tool for monitoring environmental quality, which can identify DNA damage in animals as an early warning of pollution irreversible effects. This technique was used to estimate genotoxicity in catfish collected at three estuaries of Ceará coast, Brazil, with different contamination status, in order to relate their respective damage rates with the contamination levels in each environment, under natural seasonality (dry and rainy season). Despite the estuaries degradation, all catfish presented extremely low rates of MN and other nuclear abnormalities (NA), contradicting the expected results. No statistical differences in the frequencies of both DNA damage endpoints were observed between seasons. Although literature confirms the presence of contaminants in these estuaries and the local biota exhibits biochemical impairment, our results indicate adaptive responses; the catfish seem to deal with contamination and do not exhibit chromosome damage. Besides, as all fish caught were juveniles, the low genotoxicity rates would be explained by younger greater efficiency to repair DNA damages, associated with low contaminants exposure due to the shorter lifetime or the low contaminants bioavailability under estuarine dynamics. Further studies are required to understand the genotoxic effects in catfish from Ceará and tropical estuaries.


Environmental monitoring, Genotoxicity, Sciades parkeri, Sciades proops, Sciades herzbergii

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.34188/bjaerv3n4-048


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