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Aquatic Ecosystem Health & Management
Year: 2013  |  Volume: 16  |  Issue: 1  |  Page No.: 70 - 77

Bioconcentration of benzo[a]pyrene in Chironomus riparius and Lumbriculus variegatus in relation to dissolved organic matter and biotransformation

Stanley O. Agbo, Jarkko Akkanen, Matti T. Leppanen and Jussi V. K. Kukkonen    

Abstract: The relative health of benthic invertebrate populations is threatened by both dissolved and strongly-bound contaminants. Sediment-bound contaminants can be mobilized and metabolized in the guts of deposit-feeders and may lead to even more potent derivatives. For this reason, measures of parent substance concentrations in organisms are not a suitable exposure indicator when substantial biotransformation can occur. In this study, we assessed the concentration of waterborne 14C-benzo[a]pyrene (BaP) in Chironomus riparius larvae and in the oligochaete Lumbriculus variegatus at different levels of dissolved organic carbon (DOC). These two species have different biotransformation capabilities. Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) fiber was used to assess the freely-dissolved concentrations for the prediction of uptake and elimination kinetics. Exposure concentrations decreased due to the presence of DOC. Radioactivity that corresponded to the metabolites exceeded 90% of total extractable fractions in C. riparius, and suggested that BaP metabolism was faster than uptake from solution. However, only 10% of the extracted activity was attributed to metabolites in L. variegatus. Measured tissue concentrations and model-predicted uptake and elimination rates showed that L. variegatus mainly accumulated parent compound, whereas C. riparius accumulated mainly metabolites. No effect of DOC was observed on the biotransformation of BaP in either species.

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