Haematological Assessment of the Nile Tilapia Oreochromis niloticus Exposed to Sublethal Concentrations of Portland Cement Powder in Solution
Adamu Kabir Mohammed
Audu Bala Sambo
The effects of sub lethal concentrations of Portland
cement powder in solution on some haematological parameters of the Nile
tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus (L.)) mean weight 8.20 ±
0.25 g was investigated using static bioassay system for 70 days. The
sub lethal concentrations used were 19.60, 9.80, 4.90, 2.45, 1.23 and
0.00 (control) mg L-1. There were significant differences (p<0.05)
in the water quality parameters monitored. However, temperature did not
show any significant variation (p>0.05) in both test tanks and the
control. Haematological parameters examined include: Pack Cell Volume
(PCV), Haemoglobin (Hgb), Total Erythrocytes Count (TEC), Total Leucocytes
Count (TLC) and Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate (ESR) which all decreased
significantly (p<0.05), the decrease being proportional to the increase
in the Portland cement powder in solution.
Tilapia exhibits high tolerance to adverse environmental condition; it
possesses some degree of resistance to disease and parasitic infections
(Chervinski, 1982; Randell and Brauner, 1991). Portland cement is composed
of tricalcium aluminate (Ca3Al2O6), tricalcium
Belite/dicalcium silicate (Ca2SiO5), Alite/tricalciumsilicate
(Ca3Al2O4), sodium oxide (Na2O),
potassium oxide (K2O) and gypsum (CaSO4.2H2O)
(Mindess and Young, 1981). The dry powder is obtained by grinding the
clinker to which gypsum is added to control the settling processes (Steve
and Panarese, 1988). Studies on the impact of cement dust on surrounding
vegetation showed continuous decrease in the growth rate, diversity and
productivity of the flora and fauna (Farmer, 1993; Misra et al.,
1993; Hegazy, 1996; Sharifi et al., 1997; Iqbal and Shafiq, 1998).
According to Hansen (1998) cement dust is largely made up of Cement Kiln
Dust (CKD), a by-product of the final product and is usually stored as
waste in open pit unlined landfill, which has a pH of 13.
Blood physiology is currently considered as an essential index to the
general health status in a number of fish species. Haematological analysis
provides a quick screening method for the assessment of the health status
of the fish thus its variables are now in use when clinical diagnosis
of fish physiology is applied to determine the effects of external stressors.
Several authors have reported works on the haematological parameters of
fish exposed to various toxicants (Omoregie et al., 1998; Omoregie
et al., 2002; Das et al., 2004; Adeyemo, 2005; Kori-Siakpere
et al., 2005; Lipika and Patra, 2006).
Despite, the fact that cement production results to the formation of
aerosols that invariably reach aquatic systems, no detailed study has
been reported on its effects on fish particularly the Nile Tilapia which
is a freshwater candidate found in most lenthic and or lotic aquatic systems.
The present study, determined the sub lethal effects of Portland cement
powder in solution on haematological parameters of the Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis
niloticus (L.)) under static bioassay laboratory conditions.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
Fingerlings of the Nile Tilapia (O. niloticus) mean weight (8.20
± 0.25 g) were obtained from rock water fish farms, Jos, Plateau
State, Nigeria. The fish were held in the undergraduate Research Laboratory
Department of Zoology, University of Jos in large plastic aquaria (30
L capacity) and supplied with well-aerated dechlorinated municipal water
and acclimatized for ten (10) days. During the acclimatization period
the fish were fed with pelleted reference diet (NRC, 1983) at 08:00 and
16:00 h and the fish were sorted out in to ten (10) fish/tank/15/aquaria
with replicate. A preliminary toxicant concentration was investigated,
supported by the results of the acute concentration of Portland cement
powder solution on Oreochromis niloticus in static bioassay under
laboratory conditions (Audu, 2004). The following toxicant concentrations
were obtained by dissolving the equivalent dry weights in 1 L of unionized
water: 19.60, 9.80, 4.90, 2.45 and 1.23 mg L-1. the entire
cement toxicant in each test tank was renewed fortnightly.
Water quality parameters such as Dissolved Oxygen (DO), total alkalinity,
free carbon (iv) oxides and pH were monitored 48 h interval while Temperature
was monitored every 24 h using the methods described by APHA (1985).
Blood samples were taken from the control and experimental fish at the
end of the 70 days exposure period. The blood was collected by caudal
artery puncture at the caudal peduncle and introduced into heparinized
micro-capillary and EDTA (anti-coagulant) tubes. The blood samples were
then used for the determination of the haematological parameters PCV,
Hgb, TEC, TLC and ESR in accordance to the method described by Blaxhall
and Daisley (1973).
Results obtained were subjected to statistical analysis using Analysis
of Variance (single classification), at probability level of 0.05. to
determine significant differences between treatment means which were aided
using SPSS 13.0 and Microsoft Excel 2003.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
The results of the water quality parameter (Table 1)
revealed that temperature showed no variation in all tanks recording 21.26
°C including control tank. However, slight variations were recorded
in the other water quality parameters investigated. pH was in the range
of 7.42-7.90; the highest pH value recorded in test tank having the highest
toxicant concentration (19.60 mg L-1) while the least pH value
was recorded in the control tank (0.00 mg L-1). Dissolved Oxygen
(DO) content decreases as the Portland cement toxicant concentration increases
in the range of 5.42 to 3.16 mg L-1 while the control tank
recorded DO value of 6.10 mg L-1. Free carbon iv oxide and
total alkalinity values varied significantly (p<0.05) with increase
in toxicant concentration, such that the highest toxicant concentration
(19.60 mg L-1) had the highest carbon (iv) oxide and total
alkalinity values of 2.40 and 30.20 mg L-1, respectively, while
the least free carbon (iv) oxide and total alkalinity values (1.67 and
7.67 mg L-1) were recorded in the control tank (0.00 mg L-1).
The summary of the mean values of haematological parameters is as represented
in Table 2. Changes in haematological values occur in
relation to the physiological stress, disease and toxic environmental
conditions (Blaxhall and Daisley, 1973).
The mean PCV decreased significantly (p<0.05) with the increase in
Portland cement powder in solution concentration. PCV is used to determine
the ratio of plasma to corpuscles in the blood as well as the oxygen-carrying
of the blood (Larsson et al., 1985). The significant decrease in
the PCV in this study could be attributed to gill damage and/or impaired
osmoregulation causing anaemia and haemodilution. Tort and Torres (1988)
and Omoregie et al. (2002) reported similar decrease in PCV following
exposure of dogfish Scyliorhinus canicula and Tilapia zilli
to cadmium and lubricating oil contaminations.
||Water quality parameters for sub lethal bioassay of
Portland cement on fingerlings of the Oreochromis niloticus
during the 70 days exposure period
|Values are shown in mean ± SE
||Mean ± SE# of Haematological parameters
of Oreochromis niloticus exposed to sub lethal concentrations
of Portland cement powder in solution during the 70 days of exposure
|#: Mean values calculated from 6 fishes each from exposure
and control; each result was duplicated so that the mean ±
SE given were calculated from 12 observations; PCPS: Portland Cement
Powder in Solution
Hgb is the oxygen-carrying component in the blood of fish and its concentration
can be used as good indicator of anaemia (Blaxhall and Daisley, 1973).
The significant decrease (p<0.05) of Hgb in the experimental fish exposed
to Portland cement powder in solution could thus be an indication that
anaemic condition occurred in fish during exposure. Decreased haemoglobin
following metal exposure usually result in haemodilution, which has been
regarded as a mechanism that reduce the concentration of the toxicant/pollutant
in the circulatory system (Smith et al., 1979). Kori-Siakpere
et al. (2005) and Adeyemo (2005) have reported decrease in the Hgb
of Heteroclarias and Clarias gariepinus exposed to sub lethal
concentrations of cadmium and cassava mill effluent, respectively.
TEC of the fish exposed to Portland cement powder in solution showed
significant decrease (p<0.05) which is directly proportional to the
concentration of the toxicant in solution. The Red blood cells have the
important function of haemoglobin transport which carries oxygen to all
tissues in the body (Hibiya, 1982). The decrease level of TEC observed
following the exposure of Oreochromis niloticus to sub lethal concentrations
of Portland cement powder in solution could be as a result of haemolysis
or destruction of the Red Blood Cells (RBC). The cause of the reduction
of circulating erythrocytes of stressed fish has been attributed to aggregation
of Red Blood Cells in damaged gills (Singh and Singh, 1982). The significant
decrease in the TEC observed in the test fish may also be ascribed to
the swelling of the erythrocytes, which may also be attributed to the
decrease in the erythropoitic activity of the kidney (Santhakumar et
al., 1999). Adeyemo (2005) and Lipika and Patra (2006) have reported
significant decrease in TEC level in Clarias gariepinus and Clarias
batrachus exposed to sub lethal concentrations of cassava mill effluent
and carbarylin, respectively.
Similarly, TLC also showed significant difference (p<0.05) with corresponding
increase in Portland cement powder solution. The White Blood Cells (WBC)
of the blood respond to various stressors including infections and chemical
irritants. The decreasing number of TLC in this study is a normal reaction
to a chemical such as Portland cement powder in solution. However, the
decrease of TLC may also be as the result of bio-concentration of the
test toxicant in the kidney and liver (Agrawal and Srivastava, 1980).
Ipso-Facto, Das (1998) related the decrease of TLC to protective response
of fish to stress. Leucocytes are known to be involved in the regulation
of immunological functions of the body (Santhakumar et al., 1999)
implying that decrease in TLC exposes fish to opportunistic infections
invariably supporting earlier assertions that low productivity was associated
with aquatic systems and vegetations of neighbouring cement plants (Farmer,
1993; Misra et al., 1993; Hegazy, 1996; Sharifi et al.,
1997; Iqbal and Shafiq, 1998). Svobodova et al. (1994) concluded
that prolonged exposure of toxicant causes failure of TLC production leading
to a decrease in the non-specific immunity of fish, which translate to
low productivity, as fish exposed to such toxicants cannot withstand environmental
ESR also decreased significantly (p<0.05) with increase in toxicant
concentration. The decrease in ESR could be as a damaged gills and impaired
osmoregulation during the sub lethal exposure of the fish to Portland
cement powder in solution which caused haemodilution that led to decrease
in the number of RBC through haemolysis (Gardner and Yevich, 1970). Kori-Siakpere
et al. (2005) reported decrease in ESR in Heteroclarias
exposed to sub lethal concentrations of cadmium.
The introduction of cement directly or indirectly (in the form of aerosols)
into the aquatic systems could cause deleterious and debilitating effects
on the haematology of the Nile Tilapia Oreochromis niloticus as
revealed in this study.
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