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Parabens analysis in water samples with nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) and effects in biochemical biomarkers

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Daniele Caetano da Silva
Total Authors: 1
Document type: Doctoral Thesis
Press: São Carlos.
Institution: Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Instituto de Química de São Carlos
Defense date:
Examining board members:
Eny Maria Vieira
Advisor: Eny Maria Vieira

Parabens, used as preservatives in cosmetics, foodstuffs and pharmaceuticals are not completely removed from water in sewage treatments, which may cause damage to aquatic biota. The present study addresses a new methodology to measure the quantity of methyl (MP), ethyl (EP), propyl (PP), butyl (BP), benzyl (BzP) parabens and a mixture of methyl and propylparaben in water. Aquarium water of experiments with tilapia samples was analyzed for 12 days by liquid chromatography with a doide array detector (HPLC-DAD). The toxicity of parabens in Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) and its effects on biochemical biomarkers were also evaluated after 6 and 12 days of exposure and intraperitoneal injection. The concentrations of parabens used in all tests were 4.0 mg L-1 (alone) and to mixture was 6.0 mg L-1 of methyl and 1.7 mg L-1 of propylparaben. Biomarkers, superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), glutathione reductase (GR), glutathione reduced (GSH-t) and lipid peroxidation (MDA) were analyzed. The results show the detection limits for the analysis of parabens were 0.03 mg L-1 (MP and EP), 0.05 mg L-1 (PP) and 0.10 mg L-1 (BP and BzP), and the quantification limits were 0.13 mg L-1 (MP, EP, PP), 0.18 mg L-1 (BP) and 0.25 mg L-1 (BzP). In the water sample with fish, the compounds PP and the mixture (MP + PP) could be quantified up to 30h after exposure. In the water sample without fish, the compounds BP and the mixture were quantified for 12 days of exposure. Toxicity test revealed the lethal concentrations for 50% of individuals after 48 h of exposure were 67.11 mg L-1 for MP, 24.08 mg L-1 for EP, 17.34 mg L-1 for PP, 7.98 mg L-1 for BzP and 7.80 mg L-1 for BP. Therefore, BzP and BP can be considered the most toxic of the class. As the chain length grows, the lipophilicity of the substances increases. Such an increase is related to their octanol/water (Kow) partition coefficient and, consequently, increases toxicity. Another toxic action observed for the parabens was the temporary loss of consciousness and mobility of the organisms. According to the enzymatic activity tested and the lipid peroxidation levels, the methylparaben was the only compound that caused damage by reative oxidative species, supported by the inhibition of the activities of the enzymes and the increase in the MDA levels. However, the high activity of the antioxidant enzymes to exposure and intraperitoneal injections could not prevent the reduction in the levels of GSH-t. Such results indicate parabens can cause negative effects on tilapia. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 12/00150-0 - Development, validation and application of analytical method to determine parabens in water and in different tissues of Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) and evaluation of effects on biochemical biomarkers
Grantee:Daniele Caetano da Silva
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate