Human Health (human + health)

Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Life Sciences

Terms modified by Human Health

  • human health risk

  • Selected Abstracts

    Probiotics in Food Safety and Human Health

    Valerie M Marshall
    No abstract is available for this article. [source]

    IDF 2nd World Symposium of Dairy Products in Human Health and Nutrition

    R K Robinson
    No abstract is available for this article. [source]

    Plants in Human Health and Nutrition Policy

    Dr Alison Boyd RD

    Dietary Fibres and Human Health

    Lynnette R. Ferguson

    Probiotics: Considerations for Human Health

    NUTRITION REVIEWS, Issue 3 2003
    Mary Ellen Sanders PhD
    Evidence for the role of probiotics in maintenance of health or prevention of disease is mounting and is supported in some cases by blinded, placebo-controlled human trials. Today, in an era of antibiotic-resistant pathogens and other looming microbial threats, the value of prevention of infection is recognized. Probiotics may play an important role in helping the body protect itself from infection, especially along the colonized mucosal surfaces of the gastrointestinal tract. Probiotic products are available in many different forms worldwide, including pills, powders, foods, and infant formula. In some cases, general health claims are made that cannot be substantiated for the specific strains and levels being used and consumers must therefore beware. [source]

    Book Reviews: Pathogen Genomics Impact on Human Health.

    By Karen Joy Shaw
    No abstracts. [source]

    Use of Transgenic Animals to Improve Human Health and Animal Production

    L-M Houdebine
    Contents Transgenic animals are more widely used for various purposes. Applications of animal transgenesis may be divided into three major categories: (i) to obtain information on gene function and regulation as well as on human diseases, (ii) to obtain high value products (recombinant pharmaceutical proteins and xeno-organs for humans) to be used for human therapy, and (iii) to improve animal products for human consumption. All these applications are directly or not related to human health. Animal transgenesis started in 1980. Important improvement of the methods has been made and are still being achieved to reduce cost as well as killing of animals and to improve the relevance of the models. This includes gene transfer and design of reliable vectors for transgene expression. This review describes the state of the art of animal transgenesis from a technical point of view. It also reports some of the applications in the medical field based on the use of transgenic animal models. The advance in the generation of pigs to be used as the source of organs for patients and in the preparation of pharmaceutical proteins from milk and other possible biological fluids from transgenic animals is described. The projects in course aiming at improving animal production by transgenesis are also depicted. Some the specific biosafety and bioethical problems raised by the different applications of transgenesis, including consumption of transgenic animal products are discussed. [source]

    Healthy Country, Healthy People: Policy Implications of Links between Indigenous Human Health and Environmental Condition in Tropical Australia

    Stephen T. Garnett
    Investment in programs that help Indigenous people undertake work maintaining the environmental health of their country has benefits for the environment as well as the physical, mental and cultural health of the Indigenous people involved. For health these findings have direct implications for some national health policies, service provision to homelands, health promotion and Indigenous health research. There are also direct implications for environmental investment in northern Australia and the design and regulation of markets in resource entitlements. Indirectly the findings should be important for economic, employment and education policies as well as those promoting social harmony. Given the range of benefits there is a strong argument for cross-agency investment in working on country by Indigenous people. [source]

    Early Life Origins of Human Health and Disease

    ACTA PAEDIATRICA, Issue 4 2010
    Rolf Zetterström
    No abstract is available for this article. [source]

    Enhance Cyanide Recovery by UsingAir-Sparged Hydrocyclone

    J.R. Parga Torres
    Abstract Human health and environmental concerns dictate that industrial processes be improved or replaced. Recovery or recycling is an important activity that allows cyanide residue from the industrial processes to be re-used, reducing its production cost and disposal problems. In this regard, the air-sparged hydrocyclone (ASH) has been used as a reactor for the treatment of cyanide solutions for cyanide recycling by acidification/volatilization using the Mexican modification of the Mills-Crowe process. Aqueous cyanide-ion concentration can be reduced from 250 ppm to below 20 ppm in the ASH with recoveries greater than 80 % in a single stage. [source]

    Continuing Progressive Deterioration of the Environment in the Aral Sea Region: Disastrous Effects on Mother and Child Health

    ACTA PAEDIATRICA, Issue 5 2001
    O Ataniyazova
    Scientists, non-governmental experts (NGOs) and governmental officials from the Central Asian Republics and an international group of invited scientists and NGO representatives participated in a workshop on the disastrous health problems in the Aral Sea Region. Various serious problems were reported in more than 20 presentations. Particular emphasis was put on the way in which adverse environmental factors such as contaminated water and food have contributed to the deterioration of human health, particularly that of mothers and children. Conclusion: There is an urgent request that the international community assists local scientists to develop programmes to improve the health of the population in the Aral Sea Region. [source]

    Identification and classification of skin sensitizers: identifying false positives and false negatives

    CONTACT DERMATITIS, Issue 5 2006
    David A. Basketter
    The first step in regulatory evaluation of substances involves the identification of their intrinsic hazards, including the potential for skin sensitization. This is, quite properly, entirely different from assessment of the risks to human health, which might arise from incorporation of substances in products. EU guidance on regulations concerning the classification of skin sensitizers suggests a range of sources of information be deployed in the hazard identification process. These include chemical structure, predictive animal tests, and various types of human data. Where the information is clear-cut, then uncertainties rarely arise. However, for some materials, discordant information arises, perhaps because the substance is on the borderline of test sensitivity and classification (sensitizing materials of insufficient potency do not classified according to the EU scheme), due to conflicting results in predictive tests or for other reasons. In this study, we review data on a number of substances where a classification decision is complicated by such discordances and seek to use these examples to demonstrate how best to make a weight of evidence decision on whether a substance should, or should not, be classified as a skin sensitizer. [source]

    Strong irritants masquerading as skin allergens: the case of benzalkonium chloride

    CONTACT DERMATITIS, Issue 4 2004
    David A. Basketter
    Chemicals may possess a number of hazards to human health including the ability to cause skin irritation and contact allergy. Identification and characterization of these properties should fall within predictive toxicology, but information derived from human exposure, including clinical experience, is also of importance. In this context, it is of interest to review the case of benzalkonium chloride, a cationic surfactant. This chemical is a well-known skin irritant, but on occasions it has also been reported to have allergenic properties, typically on the basis of positive diagnostic patch test data. Because the accumulated knowledge concerning the properties of a chemical is employed as the basis for its regulatory classification (e.g. in Europe), as well as for informing the clinical community with respect to the diagnosis of irritant versus allergic contact dermatitis (ACD), it is important to distinguish properly which chemicals are simply irritants from those which are both irritant and allergenic on skin. A review of the information on benzalkonium chloride confirms that it is a significant skin irritant. However, both predictive test results and clinical data lead to the conclusion that benzalkonium chloride is, at most, an extremely rare allergen, except perhaps in the eye, but with many supposed cases of ACD being likely to arise from the misinterpretation of patch test data. As a consequence, this substance should not normally be regarded as, or classified as, a significant skin sensitizer. [source]

    Ecology of invasive mosquitoes: effects on resident species and on human health

    ECOLOGY LETTERS, Issue 5 2005
    Steven A. Juliano
    Abstract Investigations of biological invasions focus on patterns and processes that are related to introduction, establishment, spread and impacts of introduced species. This review focuses on the ecological interactions operating during invasions by the most prominent group of insect vectors of disease, mosquitoes. First, we review characteristics of non-native mosquito species that have established viable populations, and those invasive species that have spread widely and had major impacts, testing whether biotic characteristics are associated with the transition from established non-native to invasive. Second, we review the roles of interspecific competition, apparent competition, predation, intraguild predation and climatic limitation as causes of impacts on residents or as barriers to invasion. We concentrate on the best-studied invasive mosquito, Aedes albopictus, evaluating the application of basic ecological theory to invasions by Aedes albopictus. We develop a model based on observations of Aedes albopictus for effects of resource competition and predation as barriers to invasion, evaluating which community and ecosystem characteristics favour invasion. Third, we evaluate the ways in which invasive mosquitoes have contributed to outbreaks of human and animal disease, considering specifically whether invasive mosquitoes create novel health threats, or modify disease transmission for existing pathogen,host systems. [source]

    Producing and Consuming Chemicals: The Moral Economy of the American Lawn

    ECONOMIC GEOGRAPHY, Issue 4 2003
    Paul Robbins
    Abstract: The burgeoning application of fertilizers and pesticides to residential lawns, which has begun to offset the gains made in reducing the use of chemicals in agriculture, represents a serious environmental hazard in the United States and elsewhere. Increased use and purchase occur specifically among a sector of consumers who explicitly and disproportionately acknowledge the risks associated with chemical deposition, moreover, and who express concern about the quality of water and human health. What drives the production of monocultural lawns in a period when environmental consciousness has encouraged "green" household action (e.g., recycling)? And why does the production of chemical externalities occur among individuals who claim to be concerned about community, family, and environment? In this article, we explore the interactions that condition and characterize the growth of intensive residential yard management in the United States. We argue that the peculiar growth and expansion of the moral economy of the lawn is the product of a threefold process in which (1) the lawn-chemical industry has implemented new and innovative styles of marketing that (2) help to produce an association of community, family, and environmental health with intensive turf-grass aesthetics and (3) reflect an increasing local demand by consumers for authentic experiences of community, family, and connection to the nonhuman biological world through meaningful work. [source]

    Environmental epigenomics in human health and disease

    Dana C. Dolinoy
    Abstract The epigenome consists of the DNA methylation marks and histone modifications involved in controlling gene expression. It is accurately reproduced during mitosis and can be inherited transgenerationally. The innate plasticity of the epigenome also enables it to be reprogrammed by nutritional, chemical, and physical factors. Imprinted genes and metastable epialleles represent two classes of genes that are particularly susceptible to environmental factors because their regulation is tightly linked to epigenetic mechanisms. To fully understand the etiology of the most devastating diseases that plague humans, the full complexity of the human epigenome will ultimately need to be characterized. Moreover, the elucidation of the interaction of the environment with the epigenome should allow for the development of novel epigenetic-based diagnostic, prevention, and therapeutic strategies for human diseases. Herein, we introduce the emerging field of environmental epigenomics, discuss the importance of imprinted genes and metastable epialleles as epigenetically labile genomic targets, and endorse the genome-wide identification of the full suite of epigenetically labile targets in both the mouse and human genomes. Environ. Mol. Mutagen., 2008. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

    Urinary concentrations of bisphenol A in relation to biomarkers of sensitivity and effect and endocrine-related health effects

    Mihi Yang
    Abstract The impact of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) on human health is not yet clear because of difficulties in ascertaining their biological effects. In the present study, we evaluated exposure to the EDC, bisphenol A (BPA), in 172 Koreans in relation to biomarkers of susceptibility and effect. The subjects completed questionnaires, which documented occupation, education, lifestyle factors, potential sources of BPA-exposure, and the occurrence of self-diagnosed endocrine disorders. None of the subjects were occupationallay exposed to BPA; however, urinary levels of conjugated BPA, determined by HPLC/FD, ranged from 0.03,62.4 ,g/l (median, 7.86). The frequencies of potential susceptibility biomarkers, the UGT1A6-Arg184Ser and the SULT1A1- Arg213His polymorphisms, were not associated with urinary BPA levels, either as single genes or in combination. Indirect effects of BPA exposure on the susceptibility to mutagens were evaluated by comparing urinary BPA concentrations with MNNG-induced sister-chromatid exchange (SCE) in lymphocytes cultured from the subjects. BPA exposure showed marginal or significant associations with theSCEs induced by the low doses of MNNG (0,0.4 mM). However, there was no overall association between urinary BPA levels and MNNG-induced frequency at doses ranging from 0.2,0.6 mM. Finally, we did not detect an association between urinary BPA concentration and endocrine-related disorders. Even though we were unable to find a strong association between BPA exposure and a biological response, possibly because of the limited number of subjects, we observed that most of the subjects were exposed to BPA. Therefore, continuous biological monitoring of BPA is a prudent measure to prevent possible BPA-related health risks. Environ. Mol. Mutagen., 2006. © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

    DNA damage in Pakistani pesticide-manufacturing workers assayed using the Comet assay

    Javed A. Bhalli
    Abstract The production and use of chemical pesticides has increased in recent years. Although the increased use of pesticides may benefit agriculture, they are also the potential source of environmental pollution, and exposure to pesticides can have negative consequences for human health. In the present study, we have assessed DNA damage in blood leukocytes from 29 Pakistani pesticide-factory workers and 35 controls of similar age and smoking history. The workers were exposed to various mixtures of organophosphates, carbamates, and pyrethroids. DNA damage was measured with the single cell gel electrophoresis (SCGE) assay or Comet assay, using the mean comet tail length (,m) as the DNA damage metric. Exposed workers had significantly longer comet tail lengths than the controls (mean ± SD 19.98 ± 2.87 vs. 7.38 ± 1.48, P < 0.001). Of the possible confounding factors, smokers had significantly longer mean comet tail lengths than nonsmokers and exsmokers for both the workers (21.48 ± 2.58 vs.18.37 ± 2.28, P < 0.001) and the controls (8.86 ± 0.56 vs. 6.79 ± 1.31, P < 0.001), while age had a minimal effect on DNA damage (P > 0.05 and P < 0.05 for workers and controls, respectively). The results of this study indicate that occupational exposure to pesticides causes DNA damage. Environ. Mol. Mutagen., 2006. © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

    Mouse toxicity of Anabaena flos-aquae from Lake Dianchi, China

    Xiaojie Pan
    Abstract Some species of the genera Anabaena can produce various kinds of cyanotoxins, which may pose risks to environment and human health. Anabaena has frequently been observed in eutrophic freshwater of China in recent years, but its toxicity has been reported only in a few studies. In the present study, the toxicity of an Anabaena flos-aquae strain isolated from Lake Dianchi was investigated. Acute toxicity testing was performed by mouse bioassay using crude extracts from the lyophilized cultures. The mice exposed to crude extracts showed visible symptoms of toxicity and died within 10,24 h of the injection. Serum biochemical parameters were evaluated by the use of commercial diagnostic kits. Significant alterations were found in the serum biochemical parameters: alkaline phosphatase (AKP), ,-glutamyl transpeptidase (,-GT), aspartate amino transferase (AST), alanine amino transferase (ALT), AST/ALT ratio, total protein content, albumin content, albumin/globulin (A/G) ratio, blood urea nitrogen (BUN), serum creatinine (Ssr), and total antioxidative capacity (T-AOC). Histopathological observations were carried out with hematoxylin and eosin (HE) stain under light microscope. Severe lesions were seen in the livers, kidneys, and lungs of the mice injected with crude extracts. The alterations of biochemical parameters were in a dose-dependent manner, and the severities of histological lesions were in the same manner. Based on biochemical and histological studies, this research firstly shows the presence of toxin-producing Anabaena species in Lake Dianchi and the toxic effects of its crude extracts on mammals. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol, 2009. [source]

    Monitoring of DNA breakage in embryonic stages of the African catfish Clarias gariepinus (Burchell, 1822) after exposure to lead nitrate using alkaline comet assay

    Alaa G. M. Osman
    Abstract Increasing lead contamination in Egyptian ecosystems and high lead concentrations in food items have raised concern for human health and stimulated studies on monitoring ecotoxicological impact of lead-caused genotoxicity. In this work, the alkaline comet assay was modified for monitoring DNA strand breakage in sensitive early life stages of the African catfish Clarias gariepinus. Following exposure to 100, 300, and 500 ,g/L lead nitrate, DNA strand breakage was quantified in embryos at 30, 48, 96, 144, and 168 h post-fertilization (PFS). For quantitative analysis, four commonly used parameters (tail % DNA, %TDNA; head % DNA, %HDNA; tail length, TL; tail moment, TM) were analyzed in 96 nuclei (in triplicates) at each sampling point. The parameter %TDNA revealed highest resolution and lowest variation. A strong correlation between lead concentration, time of exposure, and DNA strand breakage was observed. Here, genotoxicity detected by comet assay preceded the manifested malformations assessed with conventional histology. Qualitative evaluation was carried out using five categories are as follows: undamaged (%TDNA , 10%), low damaged (10% < %TDNA , 25%), median damaged (25 < %TDNA , 50%), highly damaged (50 < %TDNA , 75%), and extremely damaged (%TDNA > 75%) nuclei confirming a dose and time-dependent shift towards increased frequencies of highly and extremely damaged nuclei. A protective capacity provided by a hardened chorion is a an interesting finding in this study as DNA damage in the prehatching stages 30 h-PFS and 48 h-PFS was low in all treatments (qualitative and quantitative analyses). These results clearly show that the comet assay is a sensitive tool for the detection of genotoxicity in vulnerable early life stages of the African catfish and is a method more sensitive than histological parameters for monitoring genotoxic effects. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol, 2008. [source]

    Elucidating the factors influencing the biodegradation of cylindrospermopsin in drinking water sources

    Maree J. Smith
    Abstract The cyanotoxin cylindrospermopsin (CYN) is produced by several species of cyanobacteria and can be persistent in drinking waters supplies, which is of major concern to water authorities because of its potential to severely compromise human health. Consequently, there is a need to fully understand the persistence of CYN in water supplies, in particular, to determine whether this toxin is readily degraded by endemic aquatic organisms. This study provides insights into the environmental factors that can influence the biodegradation of this toxin in Australian drinking water supplies. Biodegradation of CYN was only evident in water supplies that had a history of toxic Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii blooms. In addition, lag periods were evident prior to the onset of biodegradation; however, repeated exposure of the endemic organisms to CYN resulted in substantial decreases in the lag periods. Furthermore, the concentration of CYN was shown to influence biodegradation with a near linear relationship (R2 of 0.9549) existing between the biodegradation rate and the initial CYN concentration. Temperature was also shown to affect the biodegradation of CYN, which is important since CYN is now being detected in more temperate climates. The presence of copper-based algicides inhibited CYN degradation, which has significant implications since copper-based algicides are commonly used to control cyanobacterial growth in water bodies. The results from this study indicate that the biodegradation of CYN in natural water bodies is a complex process that can be influenced by many environmental factors, some of which include CYN concentration, temperature, and the presence of copper-based algicides. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol, 2008. [source]

    Cytotoxic effects induced by hexachlorobenzene in Squilla mantis (L.) (Crustacea, Stomatopoda)

    Antonio Dell'Anno
    Abstract Contamination of marine environments by hexachlorobenzene (HCB) represents a serious concern for potential consequences on ecosystem and human health. Despite this, information on cytotoxic effects on marine organisms is still largely lacking. In this study, we investigated cytotoxic effects induced by HCB on gonads and muscular tissue of Squilla mantis by analysing Na+/K+ -ATPase activity and plasma membrane fluidity. This crustacean species was selected as a model for its habitat, trophic level, feeding behavior, and commercial exploitation for human consumption. Time course experiments revealed that low concentrations of HCB (i.e. 50 nM) determine an exponentially decrease of Na+/K+ -ATPase activity and a significant modification of cellular membrane fluidity. Significant negative relationships between Na+/K+ -ATPase activity and membrane fluidity were observed, suggesting that changes in the structure and packing of cellular membranes induced by HCB may be the primary factor affecting the activity of essential bilayer-associated enzymes. Overall these findings suggest that even small concentrations of HCB may determine important changes on cell metabolism with potential cascade effects on recruitment of this commercial species. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol, 2008. [source]

    Hepatoprotective efficacy of certain flavonoids against microcystin induced toxicity in mice

    R. Jayaraj
    Abstract Toxic cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) water blooms have become a serious problem in several industrialized areas of the world. Microcystin-LR (MC-LR) is a cyanobacterial heptapeptide that represents acute and chronic hazards to animal and human health. Identification of suitable chemprotectants against microcystin is essential considering human health hazards. In the present study, we have evaluated the protective efficacy of three flavanoids namely quercetin (200 mg/kg), silybin (400 mg/kg), and morin (400 mg/kg)] pretreatment against microcystin toxicity (0.75 LD50, 57.5 ,g/kg) in mice. Various biochemical variables were measured to study the recovery profile of protected animals at 1- and 3-days post-toxin treatment. The serum alanine amino transferase (ALT) shows 17-fold increase in MC-LR treated animals compared with control group at 1 day. The silybin and quercetin group showed a decrease in level of ALT compared with MC-LR group but still higher than control group. No significant protection was observed with aspartate aminotransaminase (AST) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) levels in flavanoid-treated groups at 1-day post-treatment. But at 3 days, the serum levels of AST and ALT were normalized to control values, but the serum LDH levels were still significantly higher than the control group. No significant changes were observed in glutathione peroxidase and reduced glutathione levels at both 1- and 3-day postexposure. The catalase activity shows a significant decrease in quercetin-treated animals at 3-day postexposure. The protein phosphatase was significantly inhibited in MC-LR group compared to control. The silybin pretreated group showed recovery after 1 day. At 3 days, the PPAse activity was reversed to control values in all the flavanoid-treated groups. Immunoblotting analysis showed microcystin-PPAse adduct in liver tissues of toxin-treated as well as flavanoid-treated mice even after 3 days. The results of this study show that flavanoids, quercetin, silybin, and morin could reverse the hepatotoxic effects of MC-LR in vivo. © 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol 22: 472,479, 2007. [source]

    A new morphospecies of Microcystis sp. forming bloom in the Cheffia dam (Algeria): Seasonal variation of microcystin concentrations in raw water and their removal in a full-scale treatment plant

    Hichèm Nasri
    Abstract Toxic cyanobacterial blooms are an increasing problem in Algeria. The production of cyanotoxins (microcystins) and their presence in drinking water represent growing hazards to human health. In this study, seasonal variations in the concentrations of total microcystins and physicochemical parameters (pH, temperature, dissolved oxygen, nitrate, orthophosphate, and chlorophyll- a) were analyzed in the Cheffia dam (Algeria), mainly used to supply drinking water. The removal of cyanobacterial cells and microcystins was also evaluated in full-scale plant associated with the Cheffia reservoir. The levels of microcystins (MCYSTs) in both raw and drinking water were evaluated using the protein phosphatase type 2A (PP2A) inhibition test as MCYST-LR equivalents. Identification of microcystin variants was achieved by LC/MS/MS. During the period of study (March,December 2004), microscopic observation showed the dominance in the autumn months (September,November) of a new morphospecies of Microcystis sp. The MCYST-LR equivalent concentrations in raw water varied between 50.8 and 28,886 ng L,1. The highest level of toxins was observed in October 2004 and was significantly correlated with the chlorophyll- a. Three variants of microcystins assigned as microcystin-YR (MCYST-YR), microcystin-LR (MCYST-LR), and 6Z -Adda stereoisomer of MCYST-LR were observed in the crude extract of the Microcystis sp. bloom sample. During the bloom period, total elimination of Microcystis sp. and toxins were achieved through a classical treatment plant comprised of coagulation and flocculation, powdered activated carbon at 15 mg L,1, slow sand filtration and chlorination before storage. © 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol 22: 347,356, 2007. [source]

    First report of saxitoxin in Finnish lakes and possible associated effects on human health

    Jarkko Rapala
    Abstract This study is the first report of saxitoxin in cyanobacterial blooms in Finland. Bloom samples (n = 50) were collected from Finnish freshwater sites during summer months of 2002 and 2003. These samples were screened for the presence of paralytic shellfish toxins (PSTs) using the Jellett rapid PSP screening test. Samples testing positive for PSTs (n = 7) were further analyzed with saxiphilin- and voltage-gated sodium channel [3H]-STX,binding radioreceptor assays and liquid chromatography using fluorescence and mass spectrometric analysis. The results indicated that saxitoxin (STX) was the only PST analogue in the samples and that it was present in high concentrations, as much as 1 mg L,1. Microscopic analysis revealed that 95%,100% of the phytoplankton in the positive samples consisted of Anabaena lemmermannii. The trophic status of lakes in which STX-containing blooms were found varied from oligotrophic to hypertrophic. All the lakes had high nitrogen-to-phosphorus ratios. In some instances, samples had been collected from sites where swimmers had reported adverse health effects, and in three such cases, reported adverse health effects were associated with sites from which samples testing positive for STX had been received. Symptoms of fever, eye irritation, abdominal pains, and skin rash were reported in children aged 2,10 years after exposure to the water. These were not the adverse human symptoms typical of STX poisoning; rather, they represented acute effects often reported following recreational exposure to cyanobacterial blooms. © 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol 20: 331,340, 2005 [source]

    Toxicity of manufactured zinc oxide nanoparticles in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    Hongbo Ma
    Abstract Information describing the possible impacts of manufactured nanoparticles on human health and ecological receptors is limited. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the potential toxicological effects of manufactured zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs; 1.5 nm) compared to aqueous zinc chloride (ZnCl2) in the free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Toxicity of both types of Zn was investigated using the ecologically relevant endpoints of lethality, behavior, reproduction, and transgene expression in a mtl-2::GFP (gene encoding green fluorescence protein fused onto the metallothionein-2 gene promoter) transgenic strain of C. elegans. Zinc oxide nanoparticles showed no significant difference from ZnCl2 regarding either lethality or reproduction in C. elegans, as indicated by their median lethal concentrations (LC50s; p = 0.29, n = 3) and median effective concentrations (EC50s; Z = 0.835, p = 0.797). Also, no significant difference was found in EC50s for behavioral change between ZnO-NPs (635 mg Zn/L; 95% confidence interval [CI], 477,844 mg Zn/L) and ZnCl2 (546 mg Zn/L; 95% CI, 447,666 mg Zn/L) (Z = 0.907, p = 0.834). Zinc oxide nanoparticles induced transgene expression in the mtl-2::GFP transgenic C. elegans in a manner similar to that of ZnCl2, suggesting that intracellular biotransformation of the nanoparticles might have occurred or the nanoparticles have dissolved to Zn2+ to enact toxicity. These findings demonstrate that manufactured ZnO-NPs have toxicity to the nematode C. elegans similar to that of aqueous ZnCl2. [source]

    Spatial and temporal evaluation of metal concentrations in soils and sediments from new orleans, louisiana, USA, following hurricanes Katrina and Rita

    Michael T. Abel
    Abstract During January 2006, soil and sediment samples from 75 sites in the New Orleans (LA, USA) area were collected and tested for 26 inorganic elements. The study design was intended to provide a spatial pattern of metal concentrations within the city following hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The sampling design included four transects that traversed the city in a north,south direction and three transects that traversed the city in an east,west direction. Contaminant concentrations were determined at multiple sites within each transect and compared to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency soil screening criteria pertaining to human health. Concentrations of Pb and As exceeded the criteria indiscriminately throughout the city. Of the 75 sites, 14 (19%) exceeded the soil screening criteria for Pb, and 73 (97%) exceeded the criteria for As. Forty-three of the 75 sites coincided with a previous sampling event in October 2005. Metal concentrations were evaluated for temporal comparisons using a pair sampled t test. Arsenic concentrations differed significantly over time, but Pb concentrations did not. [source]

    Acute and chronic toxicity of mercury to early life stages of the rainbow mussel, Villosa iris (Bivalvia: Unionidae)

    Theodore W. Valenti
    Abstract Mercury (Hg) contamination is receiving increased attention globally because of human health and environmental concerns. Few laboratory studies have examined the toxicity of Hg on early life stages of freshwater mussels, despite evidence that glochidia and juvenile life stages are more sensitive to contaminants than adults. Three bioassays (72-h acute glochidia, 96-h acute juvenile, and 21-d chronic juvenile toxicity tests) were conducted by exposing Villosa iris to mercuric chloride salt (HgCl2). Glochidia were more sensitive to acute exposure than were juvenile mussels, as 24-, 48-, and 72-h median lethal concentration values (LC50) for glochidia were >107, 39, and 14 ,g Hg/L, respectively. The 24-, 48-, 72-, and 96-h values for juveniles were 162, 135, 114, and 99 ,g Hg/L, respectively. In the chronic test, juveniles exposed to Hg treatments ,8 ,g/L grew significantly less than did control organisms. The substantial difference in juvenile test endpoints emphasizes the importance of assessing chronic exposure and sublethal effects. Overall, our study supports the use of glochidia as a surrogate life stage for juveniles in acute toxicity tests. However, as glochidia may be used only in short-term tests, it is imperative that an integrated approach be taken when assessing risk to freshwater mussels, as their unique life history is atypical of standard test organisms. Therefore, we strongly advocate the use of both glochidia and juvenile life stages for risk assessment. [source]

    Exposure to the polychlorinated biphenyl mixture Aroclor® 1254 alters melanocyte and tail muscle morphology in developing Xenopus laevis tadpoles

    Marla A. Fisher
    Abstract Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are ubiquitous environmental contaminants that have damaging effects on both ecosystem and human health. Numerous studies have shown that exposure to PCBs can alter growth and development of aquatic organisms, including frogs. In this report, developing Xenopus laevis tadpoles were exposed to the PCB mixture Aroclor® 1254. Tadpoles were exposed from 5 through 9 d postfertilization to either 0, 1, 10, 50, or 100 ppm Aroclor 1254. Exposure to an acute, high concentration of Aroclor 1254 (10, 50, and 100 ppm) caused statistically significant reductions in survival and body size. In addition, tadpoles exposed to these higher concentrations showed histological abnormalities, including aberrant tail tip, myotomal, and melanocyte morphologies. Described adverse health effects associated with PCB exposure of developing frogs will serve as useful health endpoints in ongoing and future molecular-based studies that correlate health effects with changes in gene expression. [source]

    Pyrene and chrysene fate in surface soil and sand microcosms

    J. Chadwick Roper
    Abstract Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are major components of wastes from municipal gas plants and many wood preservatives. Soil contaminated with these wastes is a potential threat to human health because of the carcinogenicity of many PAHs. This study follows the fate of two four-ring PAHs, pyrene and chrysene, in three matrices: an adapted soil (obtained from a site contaminated with PAHs for more than 75 years), an uncontaminated soil (with and without an inoculum of adapted soil), and sand mixed with an inoculum of adapted soil. Radiolabeled pyrene, chrysene, and salicylic acid (a metabolite of PAH biodegradation) were used to trace the mineralization, transformation, extractability, and formation of an unextractable residual over time. Linear approximations of the rates of these processes were made. High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis of extracts from inoculated soil showed the transient formation of two known metabolites: 1-hydroxypyrene (from pyrene) and 1-hydroxy-2-naphthoic acid (from chrysene). The amount of extractable label diminished steadily over the course of the study in systems that were not inhibited with sodium azide, whereas the amount of extractable label remained relatively constant in inhibited systems. Correspondingly, the amount of nonextractable residual label generally increased during each incubation in uninhibited systems, whereas the amount of this residual label remained relatively constant in inhibited systems. In contrast, the rate and extent of mineralization varied widely across matrix types. This suggests that alterations of the PAH that impact extractability and residual formation are common, in contrast to mineralization, which was apparently limited to adapted communities. [source]