Effects of benzo[a]pyrene on the blood and liver of Physalaemus cuvieri and Leptodactylus fuscus (Anura: Leptodactylidae)
MetadataShow full item record
Benzo[a]pyrene (BaP) is a bio-accumulative toxic compound found in the atmosphere, water, and soil that may affect the life cycle of amphibians. In this study, a few contamination biomarkers, such as hepatic melanomacrophages (MMs), mast cells, erythrocyte micronuclei (MN) and white blood cells were used to determine how BaP acts in these cells in the anurans Physalaemus cuvieri and Leptodactylus fuscus. Animals of both species were divided into three treatment groups: 1 day, 7 days and 13 days, subcutaneously injected 2 mg/kg BaP diluted in mineral oil and control group with only mineral oil. After 7 days, BaP caused the frequency of MN to increase in both species while reducing melanin area. The micronucleus frequency increased due to the genotoxicity of BaP, while the decreasing melanin area may be related to the inhibition of tyrosinase activity, an enzyme responsible for regulating melanogenesis, decreasing the synthesis of melanin. The mast cell density increased in all groups and in both species as a response to the inflammatory action of BaP. These cells respond to nonspecific inflammatory effects leading, therefore, to this response in all treatments. The percentage of leukocytes remained unchanged probably due to great intraspecific variability. Additionally, the leukocyte profiles of both species were characterized and the differences were attributed to extrinsic factors. In short, BaP can affect the integrity of several organs and tissues, and cell functions leading to the conclusion that this compound is hepatotoxic, genotoxic and immunotoxic for anurans. BaP is harmful for anurans, since it influences the response of important immune cells such as melanomacrophages, mast cells and leukocytes, besides inducing micronucleus formation in erythrocytes.