Polybrominated diphenyl ethers have become ubiquitous in the environment and elevated concentrations have often been found in marine organisms. Using the gastropod Crepidula onyx as a study model, this multigenerational study sets out to test the hypotheses that 1) parental dietary exposure to environmentally realistic levels of 2,2′,4,4′-tetrabrominated diphenyl ether (BDE-47) would lead to transgenerational impairments on fitness traits of marine invertebrates, and 2) the organisms might develop adaptation/acclimation after exposure for one or more generations. F0 generation of C. onyx was fed with the dinoflagellate Isochrysis galbana encapsulated with two concentrations of BDE-47 (1.78 and 16.0 ng million cells−1, respectively), and half of the F1 offspring from the higher concentration treatment was returned to control condition (transgenerational group), while the other half received BDE-47 treatment continuously (continuous treatment group). Bioaccumulation and maternal transfer of BDE-47 were evident in all life stages of the F0 generation and in F1 eggs, respectively. Exposure to BDE-47 reduced fecundity, delayed sexual maturity, and impeded embryonic development in F0 to F2. In particular, developmental toxicity of F2 embryos was apparent in the transgenerational group, but not in the continuous treatment group, even when BDE-47 was not detected in the F2 embryos nor in their mothers and they have never been exposed to the chemical. This study also suggested that the offspring might have developed adaptation/acclimation to the exposure of BDE-47 within two generations of exposure, and that the physiological alterations associated with acclimation/adaptation might have hindered the normal larval development under a stress free condition. These findings highlighted the need for long-term multigenerational studies in the ecological risk assessment of chemicals alike.
Environmental Pollution – Elsevier
Published: Apr 1, 2018
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