Histopathology alterations and histochemistry measurements in mussel, Mytilus edulis collected offshore from an aluminium smelter industry (Norway)

International Research Institute of Stavanger (IRIS) - Biomiljø, Mekjarvik 12 N-4070 Randaberg, Norway.
Marine Pollution Bulletin (Impact Factor: 2.99). 02/2008; 57(6-12):569-74. DOI: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2008.01.045
Source: PubMed


Histopathological characteristics of specific organs express condition, and represent time-integrated impacts on the organism stemming from alterations at lower levels of biological organisation. As integrative parameters, histochemical investigations have proved to be sensitive tools to detect effects of chemical compounds. The objective of this study was to determine changes in the tissues of mussels collected at a PAH contaminated site compared to a reference site using histopathological and histochemical parameters: lipofuscin (LF) accumulation in mussel digestive gland, and lysosomal membrane stability (LMS), and using additional information provided by body burden analysis to compare the sensitivity of these parameters. The histochemical measurements for both LF and LMS gave a clear indication of a high level of stress in animals from the PAH contaminated site. This LF accumulation in lysosomes is the result of peroxidation of autophagocytosed proteins associated with protein aggregates and oxidatively damaged organelles. These measurements were able to detect the effects of PAHs, and showed a strong relationship with the body burden results.

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    • "These alterations are sensitive to a wide range of contaminants (Au, 2004), and they indicate the status of target tissues, providing a general view of the damage received by molluscs . Analysis of histopathological alterations in the tissues of native mussels (Aarab et al., 2008; Wedderburn et al., 2000) and transplanted clams (Morales-Caselles et al., 2008; Nasci et al., 1999) are of increasing interest in marine pollution monitoring because of their sensitivity, availability and commercial relevance. The histopathological analysis has shown to be a good method for in situ assessment of toxic effects in the short and long term (Handy et al., 2002; Morales-Caselles et al., 2008; Watermann et al., 2008). "

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