Effect of Heavy Metals on Embryonic Development in the Mussel, Mytilus galloprovincialis
Chan-Gyoung Sung, Gi Beum Kim, Chang-Hoon Lee
Institute of Environmental Protection and Safety, NeoEnBiz Co., Seoul, 153-783, Korea
The embryos of marine bivalves have been commonly used in bioassays for quality assessments of marine environments. Although several standard protocols for the developmental bioassay of bivalves have been proposed, only a few trials for application of these protocols in environmental assessments or for the development of a new protocol with Korean species have been conducted. As such, there is a strong need to establish standard bioassay protocols with bivalves commonly found in Korean waters. To determine the sensitivity of Mytilus galloprovincialis to establish a standard bioassay, their fertilized eggs were exposed to six metals (Ag, Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, and Zn). The order of biological impact was Ag > Cu > Ni > Zn > Cr > Cd and their lowest observed effective concentration were 5, 16.4, 25.4, 142, 187 and 1,500 μ g/l, respectively. The proportion of normal larvae appeared to decrease linearly with the logarithm of each toxicant concentration within the tested range. The average values of median effective concentrations (EC50) from the triplicate experiments for Ag, Cd, Cr, Cu, Ni, and Zn were 6.8, 1,797, 786, 16.6, 68.1, and 139.2 μg/l, respectively. There was a more than 100-fold difference in EC50 values of Cu and Cd. The value of EC50 or median lethal concentration of Cu was within the range observed for other bivalve developmental bioassays. The overall sensitivity of M. galloprovincialis in the present developmental bioassay was also similar to that of other marine organisms commonly used in aquatic bioassays (e.g. sea urchins, oysters). Hence, the bioassay using the embryo of M. galloprovincialis is considered to be a useful tool to monitor and evaluate the quality of marine aquatic environments.
  
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