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Research Journal of Environmental Sciences
Year: 2009  |  Volume: 3  |  Issue: 6  |  Page No.: 677 - 686

Anthracene-Induced Enzymatic Changes as Stress Indicators in African Catfish, Heterobranchus bidorsalis Geoffroy Saint Hilaire, 1809

Taofik O. Sunmonu, Olufemi D. Owolabi and Oyelola B. Oloyede    

Abstract: The impact of short term exposure to waterborne anthracene on the activities of Gamma Glutamyl Transferase (GGT), Alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and Alkaline aminotransferase (ALP) in the liver and stomach mucosa of juvenile African catfish, Heterobranchus bidorsalis Geoffroy Saint Hilaire, 1809 was investigated. Fish specimens weighing 73.00±2.50 g (n = 72) were grouped into six of twelve fishes each in 30 L aquarium. Each group was exposed to different concentrations (0 (control), 0.25, 0.50. 0.75, 1.00 and 1.25 g L-1) of anthracene for 54 h. The results showed that there was a significant (p<0.05) inhibition of all the enzymes’ (GGT, ALT, ALP) activities in both the liver and stomach of H. bidorsalis in relation to the control. Inhibition of each enzyme increased with increase in concentration of anthracene, with the highest inhibition of 79.96% (GGT), 89.74% (ALT) and 46.26% (ALP) and lowest inhibition of 13.98% (GGT), 22.80% (ALT) and 31.44% (ALP) recorded at the concentration of 1.25 and 0.25 g L-1, respectively. The decrease in the activities of the enzymes could be due to their possible leakage into general blood circulation or could be as a result of organ dysfunction, thus indicating that anthracene could induce oxidative stress on H. bidorsalis. Percentage mortality ranged between 0 and 44.44%, with the highest mortality recorded at the highest tested concentration of anthracene. The results suggest that GGT, ALT and ALP can be used as potential environmental biomarkers for anthracene-induced hepatotoxicity and gastrotoxicity in H. bidorsalis.

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