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Toxics, Volume 11, Issue 5 (May 2023) – 75 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Triclosan (TCS), a commonly used antibacterial preservative, has been demonstrated to have high toxicological potential and adversely affects water bodies. Since microalgae are one of the most significant primary producers on the planet, understanding the toxicological processes of TCS is critical for determining its risk in aquatic ecosystems and managing water environments. The molecular toxicity mechanism effect of TCS on Euglena gracilis was investigated by transcriptomics technology. A decrease in photosynthetic pigments, oxidative damage and inhibition of the tricarboxylic acid-related cycle metabolic pathway were detected in algal cells, which provide fundamental data and recommendations for TCS ecological risk assessment. View this paper
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13 pages, 3536 KiB  
Article
Amelioration of Hepatotoxic and Neurotoxic Effect of Cartap by Aloe vera in Wistar Rats
by Vivek Kumar Gupta, Uichang Park, Nikhat J. Siddiqi, Yun Suk Huh and Bechan Sharma
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 472; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050472 - 22 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1429
Abstract
Pesticide exposure can pose a serious risk to nontarget animals. Cartap is being broadly used in agricultural fields. The toxic effects of cartap on the levels of hepatotoxicity and neurotoxicity have not been properly studied in mammalian systems. Therefore, the present work focused [...] Read more.
Pesticide exposure can pose a serious risk to nontarget animals. Cartap is being broadly used in agricultural fields. The toxic effects of cartap on the levels of hepatotoxicity and neurotoxicity have not been properly studied in mammalian systems. Therefore, the present work focused on the effect of cartap on the liver and brain of Wistar rats and made an assessment of the ameliorating potential of A. vera. The experimental animals were divided into 4 groups, comprising six rats in each: Group 1—Control; Group 2—A. vera; Group 3—Cartap; and Group 4—A. vera + Cartap. The animals orally given cartap and A. vera were sacrificed after 24 h of the final treatment and histological and biochemical investigations were conducted in liver and brain of Wistar rats. Cartap at sublethal concentrations caused substantial decreases in CAT, SOD, and GST levels in the experimental rats. The activity levels of transaminases and phosphatases in cartap group were also found to be substantially altered. The AChE activity was recorded as decreasing in RBC membrane and brain of the cartap-treated animals. The TNF-α and IL-6 level in serum were increased expressively in the cartap challenged groups. Histological investigation of liver showed disorganized hepatic cords and severely congested central veins due to cartap. However, the A. vera extract was observed to significantly protect against the effects of cartap toxicity. The protective impact of A. vera against cartap toxicity may be due to the existence of antioxidants in it. These findings suggest that A. vera may be developed as a potential supplement to the appropriate medication in the treatment of cartap toxicity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecotoxicity Induced by Pesticides Exposure)
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12 pages, 2307 KiB  
Article
Mitochondrial Toxic Effects of Antiepileptic Drug Valproic Acid on Mouse Kidney Stem Cells
by Minsu Lee, Changhwan Ahn, KangMin Kim and Eui-Bae Jeung
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 471; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050471 - 20 May 2023
Viewed by 1243
Abstract
Valproic acid (VPA) is a histone deacetylase inhibitor that is used mainly as an antiepileptic and anticonvulsant drug. The side effects of VPA usually appears as hepatic injury and various metabolic disorders. On the other hand, it is rarely reported to cause kidney [...] Read more.
Valproic acid (VPA) is a histone deacetylase inhibitor that is used mainly as an antiepileptic and anticonvulsant drug. The side effects of VPA usually appears as hepatic injury and various metabolic disorders. On the other hand, it is rarely reported to cause kidney injury. Despite the many studies on the influence of VPA exposure on the kidneys, the specific mechanism remains unclear. This study examined the changes after VPA treatment to the mouse kidney stem cells (mKSCs). VPA triggers an increase in mitochondrial ROS, but there was no change in either mitochondrial membrane potential or the mitochondrial DNA copy number in mKSCs. The VPA treatment increased the mitochondrial complex III but decreased complex V significantly compared to the DMSO treatment as a control. The inflammatory marker (IL-6) and the expression of the apoptosis markers (Caspase 3) and were increased by VPA. In particular, the expression of the podocyte injury markers (CD2AP) was increased significantly. In conclusion, VPA exposure has adverse effects on mouse kidney stem cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals and Female Reproduction)
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14 pages, 2818 KiB  
Article
In Vitro Genotoxicity Evaluation of PAHs in Mixtures Using Experimental Design
by Rebecca Castel, Virginie Tassistro, Magalie Claeys-Bruno, Laure Malleret and Thierry Orsière
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 470; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050470 - 19 May 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1060
Abstract
Settled dusts are sinks for environmental pollutants, including Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) that are ubiquitous, persistent, and carcinogenic. To assess their toxicity in mixtures, Toxic Equivalent Factors (TEFs) are routinely used and based on the hypothesis of additive effects, although PAH interactions may [...] Read more.
Settled dusts are sinks for environmental pollutants, including Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) that are ubiquitous, persistent, and carcinogenic. To assess their toxicity in mixtures, Toxic Equivalent Factors (TEFs) are routinely used and based on the hypothesis of additive effects, although PAH interactions may occur and remain an open issue. This study investigated genotoxic binary interaction effects for six PAHs in mixtures using two in vitro assays and estimated Genotoxic Equivalent Factors (GEFs) to roughly predict the genotoxicity of PAH in mixtures. The Design of the Experiment approach was used with the micronucleus assay for cytostasis and micronuclei frequency and the alkaline comet assay for DNA damage. GEFs were determined for each PAH independently and in a mixture. For the cytostasis endpoint, no PAHs interaction was noted. BbF and BaP had a synergistic effect on DNA damage. All the PAH interacted between them regarding chromosomal damage. Although the calculated GEFs were similar to the TEFs, the latter may underestimate the genotoxic potential of a PAH mixture. GEFs calculated for PAH alone were lower than GEFs for PAHs in mixtures; thus, mixtures induce greater DNA/chromosomal damage than expected. This research helps to advance the challenging issue of contaminant mixtures’ effects on human health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxic Mixtures Evaluation and Management)
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12 pages, 4967 KiB  
Article
Combined Toxicities of Di-Butyl Phthalate and Polyethylene Terephthalate to Zebrafish Embryos
by Qiang Zhang, Wenjie Ma and Jingmin Zhu
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 469; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050469 - 19 May 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1650
Abstract
The increasing concern for the ecological risks of microplastics (MPs) as carriers of hydrophobic organic contaminants is evident. Di-butyl phthalate (DBP) is extensively utilized as an additive in plastic products, and both DBP and MPs are widespread in the environment. However, the combined [...] Read more.
The increasing concern for the ecological risks of microplastics (MPs) as carriers of hydrophobic organic contaminants is evident. Di-butyl phthalate (DBP) is extensively utilized as an additive in plastic products, and both DBP and MPs are widespread in the environment. However, the combined toxicity of these substances remains uncertain. In this study, zebrafish embryos were employed to assess the toxic effects of polyethylene terephthalate (PET, MPs) and DBP, with a focus on the DBP toxicities influenced by PET. The embryonic chorion was partially covered by PET particles, and PET led to a delayed hatching of zebrafish embryos without inducing death or teratogenesis. On the other hand, exposure to DBP considerably inhibited the hatching of embryos, leading to severe lethal and teratogenic effects. The most common phenotypes induced by DBP exposure were delayed yolk sac absorption and pericardial edema. The mortality increased in co-treatment with 100 particles/mL PET and 2 mg/L DBP at 24 hpf and 48 hpf. The malformation phenotype, bent notochord, and delayed yolk sac absorption became more severe in 1 mg/L DBP exposition with the co-exposure of 100 particles/mL PET at 72 hpf. PET might act as a carrier that enhances the bioavailability of ambient DBP. Full article
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18 pages, 6182 KiB  
Article
A Sensitive Response Index Selection for Rapid Assessment of Heavy Metals Toxicity to the Photosynthesis of Chlorella pyrenoidosa Based on Rapid Chlorophyll Fluorescence Induction Kinetics
by Tingting Gan, Gaofang Yin, Nanjing Zhao, Xiaoxuan Tan and Ying Wang
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 468; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050468 - 19 May 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1654
Abstract
Heavy metals as toxic pollutants have important impacts on the photosynthesis of microalgae, thus seriously threatening the normal material circulation and energy flow of the aquatic ecosystem. In order to rapidly and sensitively detect the toxicity of heavy metals to microalgal photosynthesis, in [...] Read more.
Heavy metals as toxic pollutants have important impacts on the photosynthesis of microalgae, thus seriously threatening the normal material circulation and energy flow of the aquatic ecosystem. In order to rapidly and sensitively detect the toxicity of heavy metals to microalgal photosynthesis, in this study, the effects of four typical toxic heavy metals, chromium (Cr(VI)), cadmium (Cd), mercury (Hg), and copper (Cu), on nine photosynthetic fluorescence parameters (φPo, ΨEo, φEo, δRo, ΨRo, φRo, FV/FO, PIABS, and Sm) derived from the chlorophyll fluorescence rise kinetics (OJIP) curve of microalga Chlorella pyrenoidosa, were investigated based on the chlorophyll fluorescence induction kinetics technique. By analyzing the change trends of each parameter with the concentrations of the four heavy metals, we found that compared with other parameters, φPo (maximum photochemical quantum yield of photosystem II), FV/FO (photochemical parameter of photosystem II), PIABS (photosynthetic performance index), and Sm (normalized area of the OJIP curve) demonstrated the same monotonic change characteristics with an increase in concentration of each heavy metal, indicating that these four parameters could be used as response indexes to quantitatively detect the toxicity of heavy metals. By further comparing the response performances of φPo, FV/FO, PIABS, and Sm to Cr(VI), Cd, Hg, and Cu, the results indicated that whether it was analyzed from the lowest observed effect concentration (LOEC), the influence degree by equal concentration of heavy metal, the 10% effective concentration (EC10), or the median effective concentration (EC50), the response sensitivities of PIABS to each heavy metal were all significantly superior to those of φRo, FV/FO, and Sm. Thus, PIABS was the most suitable response index for sensitive detection of heavy metals toxicity. Using PIABS as a response index to compare the toxicity of Cr(VI), Cd, Hg, and Cu to C. pyrenoidosa photosynthesis within 4 h by EC50 values, the results indicated that Hg was the most toxic, while Cr(VI) toxicity was the lowest. This study provides a sensitive response index for rapidly detecting the toxicity of heavy metals to microalgae based on the chlorophyll fluorescence induction kinetics technique. Full article
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13 pages, 2566 KiB  
Article
Feasibility Study on the Application of Biodegradable Plastic Film in Farmland Soil in Southern Xinjiang, China—Planting Tomatoes as an Example
by Rehemanjiang Wufuer, Jia Duo, Liang Pei, Shuzhi Wang and Wenfeng Li
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 467; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050467 - 18 May 2023
Viewed by 1278
Abstract
In recent years, polybutylene adipate-co-terephthalate (PBAT) mulch film has become one of the most commonly used biodegradable mulch films in agriculture in an attempt to combat plastic film pollution. However, its degradation characteristics and impact on the soil environment and crop growth are [...] Read more.
In recent years, polybutylene adipate-co-terephthalate (PBAT) mulch film has become one of the most commonly used biodegradable mulch films in agriculture in an attempt to combat plastic film pollution. However, its degradation characteristics and impact on the soil environment and crop growth are affected by many factors such as its composition, soil and crop types, local climate characteristics, etc. In this study, PBAT mulch film and ordinary polyethylene (PE) film were used as test materials, with non-mulching treatment (CK) as a control, to study the applicability of PBAT film in Moyu County, Southern Xinjiang region, using tomato growth as an example. The results showed that PBAT film started its induction period after 60 days, and 60.98% of the PBAT film was degraded within 100 days. Generally, the soil temperature and humidity preservation functions of this film were comparable to that of PE film in the seedling and flowering–fruiting stages of tomato growth. In the mature stage, the soil humidity under PBAT film was significantly lower than that of PE film due to its substantial degradation rate. However, this did not have any significant negative effects on tomato growth, yield, and quality. The tomato yield of 667 m2 with BPAT was insignificantly lower than that of PE film by 3.14%, and both were significantly higher than that of the CK treatment by 63.38% and 68.68%, respectively, indicating that it is feasible to use PBAT film to cultivate crops such as tomato in the arid region of Southern Xinjiang, China. Full article
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12 pages, 511 KiB  
Article
The Levels of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons and Their Derivatives in Plasma and Their Effect on Mitochondrial DNA Methylation in the Oilfield Workers
by Yaning Jia, Weixia Li, Yanlin Li, Lei Zhao, Chenguang Li, Lei Wang, Junkai Fang, Shanjun Song, Yaqin Ji, Tao Fang, Jing Zhang, Liqiong Guo and Penghui Li
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 466; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050466 - 17 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1328
Abstract
This study focuses on the components and levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and their derivatives (MPAHs and OPAHs) in plasma samples from 19 oil workers, pre- and post-workshift, and their exposure–response relationship with mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) methylation. PAH, MPAH, OPAH, and platelet [...] Read more.
This study focuses on the components and levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and their derivatives (MPAHs and OPAHs) in plasma samples from 19 oil workers, pre- and post-workshift, and their exposure–response relationship with mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) methylation. PAH, MPAH, OPAH, and platelet mtDNA methylation levels were determined using a gas chromatograph mass spectrometer (GC-MS) and a pyrosequencing protocol, respectively. The total plasma concentrations of PAHs in mean value were, respectively, 31.4 ng/mL and 48.6 ng/mL in pre- and post-workshift, and Phe was the most abundant (13.3 ng/mL in pre-workshift and 22.1 ng/mL in post-workshift, mean value). The mean values of total concentrations of MPAHs and OPAHs in the pre-workshift were 2.7 ng/mL and 7.2 ng/mL, while in the post-workshift, they were 4.5 ng/mL and 8.7 ng/mL, respectively. The differences in the mean MT-COX1, MT-COX2, and MT-COX3 methylation levels between pre- and post-workshift were 2.36%, 5.34%, and 0.56%. Significant (p < 0.05) exposure–response relationships were found between PAHs and mtDNA methylation in the plasma of workers; exposure to Anthracene (Ant) could induce the up-regulation of the methylation of MT-COX1 (β = 0.831, SD = 0.105, p < 0.05), and exposure to Fluorene (Flo) and Phenanthrene (Phe) could induce the up-regulation of methylation of MT-COX3 (β = 0.115, SD = 0.042, p < 0.05 and β = 0.036, SD = 0.015, p < 0.05, respectively). The results indicated that exposure to PAHs was an independent factor influencing mtDNA methylation. Full article
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15 pages, 3952 KiB  
Article
Cigarette Smoke-Induced Gastric Cancer Cell Exosomes Affected the Fate of Surrounding Normal Cells via the Circ0000670/Wnt/β-Catenin Axis
by Zhaofeng Liang, Shikun Fang, Yue Zhang, Xinyi Zhang, Yumeng Xu, Hui Qian and Hao Geng
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 465; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050465 - 17 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1461
Abstract
Cigarette smoke is a major risk factor for gastric cancer. Exosomes are an important part of intercellular and intra-organ communication systems and can carry circRNA and other components to play a regulatory role in the occurrence and development of gastric cancer. However, it [...] Read more.
Cigarette smoke is a major risk factor for gastric cancer. Exosomes are an important part of intercellular and intra-organ communication systems and can carry circRNA and other components to play a regulatory role in the occurrence and development of gastric cancer. However, it is unclear whether cigarette smoke can affect exosomes and exosomal circRNA to promote the development of gastric cancer. Exosomes secreted by cancer cells promote cancer development by affecting surrounding normal cells. Herein, we aimed to clarify whether the exosomes secreted by cigarette smoke-induced gastric cancer cells can promote the development of gastric cancer by affecting the surrounding gastric mucosal epithelial cells (GES-1). In the present study, we treated gastric cancer cells with cigarette smoke extract for 4 days and demonstrated that cigarette smoke promotes the stemness and EMT of gastric cancer cells and cigarette smoke-induced exosomes promote stemness gene expression, EMT processes and the proliferation of GES-1 cells. We further found that circ0000670 was up-regulated in tissues of gastric cancer patients with smoking history, cigarette smoke-induced gastric cancer cells and their exosomes. Functional assays showed that circ0000670 knockdown inhibited the promoting effects of cigarette smoke-induced exosomes on the stemness and EMT characteristic of GES-1 cells, whereas its overexpression had the opposite effect. In addition, exosomal circ0000670 was found to promote the development of gastric cancer by regulating the Wnt/β-catenin pathway. Our findings indicated that exosomal circ0000670 promotes cigarette smoke-induced gastric cancer development, which might provide a new basis for the treatment of cigarette smoke-related gastric cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Environmental Chemicals Exposomics and Metabolomics)
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6 pages, 261 KiB  
Case Report
Transdermal Nicotine Poisoning: A Rare Case Report of Occupational Exposure
by Jenny Becam, Edouard Martin, Gildas Pouradier, Natalia Doudka, Caroline Solas, Romain Guilhaumou and Nicolas Fabresse
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 464; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050464 - 17 May 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1636
Abstract
We report a case of accidental nicotine intoxication following transdermal exposure in a 22-year-old man with no medical history, who worked in a company manufacturing e-liquids for electronic cigarettes. He accidentally spilled 300 mL of pure nicotine solution (>99%) on his right leg [...] Read more.
We report a case of accidental nicotine intoxication following transdermal exposure in a 22-year-old man with no medical history, who worked in a company manufacturing e-liquids for electronic cigarettes. He accidentally spilled 300 mL of pure nicotine solution (>99%) on his right leg without wearing protective clothing or a mask. Less than a minute later, he experienced dizziness, nausea, and headaches, followed by painful burning sensations in the affected area. He immediately removed his pants and washed his leg thoroughly with water. He presented to the emergency department two hours later, where he exhibited a respiratory rate of 25 cpm, a heart rate of 70 bpm, headaches, abdominal pain, pallor, and vomiting. He recovered without specific treatment five hours post-intoxication. Plasma levels of nicotine, cotinine, and hydroxycotinine were measured five hours after exposure using liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry. The concentrations found were 447 ng/mL for nicotine, 1254 ng/mL for cotinine, and 197 ng/mL for hydroxycotinine. Nicotine is an alkaloid that can be highly toxic, with doses of 30–60 mg being potentially fatal. Transdermal intoxication is rare, with very few cases reported in the literature. This case highlights the risk of acute intoxication through cutaneous exposure to nicotine-containing liquid products and the need for protective clothing when handling such products in a professional context. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Exposome Analysis and Risk Assessment)
19 pages, 2470 KiB  
Article
Category-Based Toxicokinetic Evaluations of Data-Poor Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) using Gas Chromatography Coupled with Mass Spectrometry
by Anna Kreutz, Matthew S. Clifton, W. Matthew Henderson, Marci G. Smeltz, Matthew Phillips, John F. Wambaugh and Barbara A. Wetmore
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 463; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050463 - 16 May 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2406
Abstract
Concern over per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) has increased as more is learned about their environmental presence, persistence, and bioaccumulative potential. The limited monitoring, toxicokinetic (TK), and toxicologic data available are inadequate to inform risk across this diverse domain. Here, 73 PFAS were [...] Read more.
Concern over per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) has increased as more is learned about their environmental presence, persistence, and bioaccumulative potential. The limited monitoring, toxicokinetic (TK), and toxicologic data available are inadequate to inform risk across this diverse domain. Here, 73 PFAS were selected for in vitro TK evaluation to expand knowledge across lesser-studied PFAS alcohols, amides, and acrylates. Targeted methods developed using gas chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry (GC-MS/MS) were used to measure human plasma protein binding and hepatocyte clearance. Forty-three PFAS were successfully evaluated in plasma, with fraction unbound (fup) values ranging from 0.004 to 1. With a median fup of 0.09 (i.e., 91% bound), these PFAS are highly bound but exhibit 10-fold lower binding than legacy perfluoroalkyl acids recently evaluated. Thirty PFAS evaluated in the hepatocyte clearance assay showed abiotic loss, with many exceeding 60% loss within 60 min. Metabolic clearance was noted for 11 of the 13 that were successfully evaluated, with rates up to 49.9 μL/(min × million cells). The chemical transformation simulator revealed potential (bio)transformation products to consider. This effort provides critical information to evaluate PFAS for which volatility, metabolism, and other routes of transformation are likely to modulate their environmental fates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue PFAS Toxicology and Metabolism)
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41 pages, 12130 KiB  
Review
Socio-Environmental Risks Linked with Mine Tailings Chemical Composition: Promoting Responsible and Safe Mine Tailings Management Considering Copper and Gold Mining Experiences from Chile and Peru
by Carlos Cacciuttolo, Deyvis Cano and María Custodio
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 462; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050462 - 16 May 2023
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 5316
Abstract
There is a need to define mine tailings in a clear, precise, multidisciplinary, transdisciplinary, and holistic manner, considering not only geotechnical and hydraulic concepts but also integrating environmental and geochemical aspects with implications for the sustainability of mining. This article corresponds to an [...] Read more.
There is a need to define mine tailings in a clear, precise, multidisciplinary, transdisciplinary, and holistic manner, considering not only geotechnical and hydraulic concepts but also integrating environmental and geochemical aspects with implications for the sustainability of mining. This article corresponds to an independent study that answers questions concerning the definition of mine tailings and the socio-environmental risks linked with mine tailings chemical composition by examining the practical experience of industrial-scale copper and gold mining projects in Chile and Peru. Definitions of concepts and analysis of key aspects in the responsible management of mine tailings, such as characterization of metallic–metalloid components, non-metallic components, metallurgical reagents, and risk identification, among others, are presented. Implications of potential environmental impacts from the generation of acid rock drainage (ARD) in mine tailings are discussed. Finally, the article concludes that mine tailings are potentially toxic to both communities and the environment, and cannot be considered as inert and innocuous materials; thus, mine tailings require safe, controlled, and responsible management with the application of the most high management standards, use of the best available technologies (BATs), use of best applicable practices (BAPs), and implementation of the best environmental practices (BEPs) to avoid risk and potential socio-environmental impact due to accidents or failure of tailings storage facilities (TSFs). Full article
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13 pages, 3656 KiB  
Article
A Low-Cost Approach for Batch Separation, Identification and Quantification of Microplastics in Agriculture Soil
by Shan Zhang, Wenfeng Li, Anming Bao, Gongxu Jia, Xiaoli Lin and Qingling Zhang
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 461; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050461 - 16 May 2023
Viewed by 1325
Abstract
An increasing trend of research on microplastics (MPs) pollution in soil requires plenty of accurate data on MPs occurrence in soil samples. Efficient and economical methods of obtaining MP data are in development, especially for film MPs. We focused on MPs originating from [...] Read more.
An increasing trend of research on microplastics (MPs) pollution in soil requires plenty of accurate data on MPs occurrence in soil samples. Efficient and economical methods of obtaining MP data are in development, especially for film MPs. We focused on MPs originating from agricultural mulching films (AMF) and presented an approach that can separate MPs in batches and identify them quickly. It mainly includes separation by ultrasonic cleaning and centrifugation, digestion of organic matter, and an AMF-MPs identification model. Adding olive oil or n-hexane to saturated sodium chloride constituted the best combination of separation solutions. Controlled experiments proved that the optimized methods improved the efficiency of this approach. The AMF-MPs identification model provides specific characteristics of MPs and can identify MPs efficiently. Evaluation results showed that the mean MP recovery rate reached 95%. The practical application demonstrated that this approach could conduct MPs analysis in soil samples in batches with less time and low cost. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Novel Methods in Toxicology Research)
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18 pages, 1244 KiB  
Article
Heavy Metals in Vegetables: Screening Health Risks of Irrigation with Wastewater in Peri-Urban Areas of Bhakkar, Pakistan
by Mehak Nawaz Khan, Muhammad Anis Aslam, Abdullatif Bin Muhsinah and Jalal Uddin
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 460; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050460 - 16 May 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1991
Abstract
One of the key concerns in public health is food security in the food sector. Due to the large amounts of potentially hazardous metals in wastewater, this practice may pose serious environmental and health risks to neighboring residents. In this study, the health [...] Read more.
One of the key concerns in public health is food security in the food sector. Due to the large amounts of potentially hazardous metals in wastewater, this practice may pose serious environmental and health risks to neighboring residents. In this study, the health effects of heavy metals in vegetables irrigated with wastewater were studied. The findings indicated a massive accumulation of heavy metals in wastewater-irrigated soil and vegetables collected from Bhakkar, Pakistan. The current study looked at the effects of wastewater irrigation on metal buildup in the soil–plant continuum and the health hazards that come with it (Cd, Co, Ni, Mn, Pb, and Fe). Heavy metal concentrations in vegetables cultivated on soil irrigated with untreated wastewater were not significantly lower (p ≥ 0.05) than in vegetables grown on wastewater-irrigated soil and were below the World Health Organization’s recommended limits. A considerable amount of the selected hazardous metals was also swallowed by adults and children who consumed these vegetables, according to the research. On soil that had received wastewater irrigation, Ni and Mn were substantially different at p ≥ 0.001 levels. Pb, Ni, and Cd had health risk scores higher than the ones in all ingested vegetables, while Mn had a health risk score greater than the ones in turnips, carrots, and lettuce. The results also showed that both adults and children who consumed these vegetables absorbed a significant amount of the chosen toxic metals. Pb and Cd were shown to be the most dangerous chemical compounds to human health, and everyday consumption of agricultural plants irrigated with wastewater may pose a health risk, according to the health risk criteria. Full article
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14 pages, 2438 KiB  
Article
Immunotoxicity and Transcriptome Analyses of Zebrafish (Danio rerio) Embryos Exposed to 6:2 FTSA
by Jing Zhang, Zongming Ren and Meng Chen
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 459; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050459 - 15 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1319
Abstract
As a new alternative to perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), 6:2 fluorotelomer sulfonic acid (6:2 FTSA) has been widely produced and used in recent years, and its concentration and frequency of detection in the aquatic environment and aquatic organisms are increasing. However, studies of [...] Read more.
As a new alternative to perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), 6:2 fluorotelomer sulfonic acid (6:2 FTSA) has been widely produced and used in recent years, and its concentration and frequency of detection in the aquatic environment and aquatic organisms are increasing. However, studies of its toxicity in aquatic biological systems are alarmingly scarce, and the relevant toxicological information needs to be improved. In this study, we investigated AB wild-type zebrafish (Danio rerio) embryos subjected to acute 6:2 FTSA exposure for immunotoxicity using immunoassays and transcriptomics. Immune indexes showed significant decreases in SOD and LZM activities, but no significant change in NO content. Other indexes (TNOS, iNOS, ACP, AKP activities, and MDA, IL-1β, TNF-α, NF-κB, TLR4 content) all showed significant increases. These results indicated that 6:2 FTSA induced oxidative stress and inflammatory responses in zebrafish embryos and exhibited immunotoxicity. Consistently, transcriptomics showed that genes involved in the MAPK, TLR and NOD-like receptor signaling pathways (hsp70, hsp701, stat1b, irf3, cxcl8b, map3k8, il1b, tnfa and nfkb) were significantly upregulated after 6:2 FTSA exposure, suggesting that 6:2 FTSA might induce immunotoxicity in zebrafish embryos through the TLR/NOD-MAPK pathway. The results of this study indicate that the safety of 6:2 FTSA should be examined further. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecotoxicity Induced by Pesticides Exposure)
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19 pages, 2981 KiB  
Article
Arsenic-Containing Medicine Treatment Disturbed the Human Intestinal Microbial Flora
by Jiaojiao Li, Xinshuo Chen, Shixiang Zhao and Jian Chen
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 458; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050458 - 15 May 2023
Viewed by 1474
Abstract
Human intestinal microbiome plays vital role in maintaining intestinal homeostasis and interacting with xenobiotics. Few investigations have been conducted to understand the effect of arsenic-containing medicine exposure on gut microbiome. Most animal experiments are onerous in terms of time and resources and not [...] Read more.
Human intestinal microbiome plays vital role in maintaining intestinal homeostasis and interacting with xenobiotics. Few investigations have been conducted to understand the effect of arsenic-containing medicine exposure on gut microbiome. Most animal experiments are onerous in terms of time and resources and not in line with the international effort to reduce animal experiments. We explored the overall microbial flora by 16S rRNA genes analysis in fecal samples from acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) patients treated with arsenic trioxide (ATO) plus all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA). Gut microbiomes were found to be overwhelmingly dominated by Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes after taking medicines containing arsenic in APL patients. The fecal microbiota composition of APL patients after treatment showed lower diversity and uniformity shown by the alpha diversity indices of Chao, Shannon, and Simpson. Gut microbiome operational taxonomic unit (OTU) numbers were associated with arsenic in the feces. We evaluated Bifidobacterium adolescentis and Lactobacillus mucosae to be a keystone in APL patients after treatment. Bacteroides at phylum or genus taxonomic levels were consistently affected after treatment. In the most common gut bacteria Bacteroides fragilis, arsenic resistance genes were significantly induced by arsenic exposure in anaerobic pure culture experiments. Without an animal model, without taking arsenicals passively, the results evidence that arsenic exposure by drug treatment is not only associated with alterations in intestinal microbiome development at the abundance and diversity level, but also induced arsenic biotransformation genes (ABGs) at the function levels which may even extend to arsenic-related health outcomes in APL. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Drugs Toxicity)
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19 pages, 2757 KiB  
Article
Chemical Survey and Risk Assessment of 56 Pesticides in the Sado River Estuary (Iberian Peninsula, Portugal)
by Maria João Rocha and Eduardo Rocha
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 457; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050457 - 14 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1527
Abstract
The Sado basin (~8000 km2) is an area where intensive agriculture occurs. However, this region still has few data about the water levels of priority pesticides such as fungicides, herbicides, and insecticides. Therefore, water samples were collected every two months at [...] Read more.
The Sado basin (~8000 km2) is an area where intensive agriculture occurs. However, this region still has few data about the water levels of priority pesticides such as fungicides, herbicides, and insecticides. Therefore, water samples were collected every two months at nine sites along the Sado River Estuary and analyzed by GC-MS/MS to determine the influx of pesticides in that ecosystem. More than 87% of the pesticides were quantified, and 42% and 72% were above the maximum totals established by the European Directives 98/83/EC and 2013/39/EU, respectively. Fungicides (91%), herbicides (87%), and insecticides (85%) attained average annual amounts of ≈3.2 µg/L, ≈1.0 µg/L, and ≈12.8 µg/L, respectively. A mathematical approach was used to evaluate the hazard of the pesticide mixture at the maximum concentrations found in this area. The assessment identified invertebrates as the most at-risk trophic level and identified two chemicals (chlorpyriphos and cyfluthrin) as the primary culprits. This assumption was supported by acute in vivo assays using Daphnia magna. These observations, and the high concentrations of phosphates, indicate that the status of the Sado waters poses environmental and potential human health risks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Pollution Caused by Agriculture and Its Mitigation Measures)
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16 pages, 2652 KiB  
Article
Mercury Biogeochemical Cycle in Yanwuping Hg Mine and Source Apportionment by Hg Isotopes
by Xingang Jin, Junyao Yan, Muhammad Ubaid Ali, Qiuhua Li and Ping Li
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 456; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050456 - 14 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1286
Abstract
Although mercury (Hg) mining activities in the Wanshan area have ceased, mine wastes remain the primary source of Hg pollution in the local environment. To prevent and control Hg pollution, it is crucial to estimate the contribution of Hg contamination from mine wastes. [...] Read more.
Although mercury (Hg) mining activities in the Wanshan area have ceased, mine wastes remain the primary source of Hg pollution in the local environment. To prevent and control Hg pollution, it is crucial to estimate the contribution of Hg contamination from mine wastes. This study aimed to investigate Hg pollution in the mine wastes, river water, air, and paddy fields around the Yanwuping Mine and to quantify the pollution sources using the Hg isotopes approach. The Hg contamination at the study site was still severe, and the total Hg concentrations in the mine wastes ranged from 1.60 to 358 mg/kg. The binary mixing model showed that, concerning the relative contributions of the mine wastes to the river water, dissolved Hg and particulate Hg were 48.6% and 90.5%, respectively. The mine wastes directly contributed 89.3% to the river water Hg contamination, which was the main Hg pollution source in the surface water. The ternary mixing model showed that the contribution was highest from the river water to paddy soil and that the mean contribution was 46.3%. In addition to mine wastes, paddy soil is also impacted by domestic sources, with a boundary of 5.5 km to the river source. This study demonstrated that Hg isotopes can be used as an effective tool for tracing environmental Hg contamination in typical Hg-polluted areas. Full article
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18 pages, 362 KiB  
Article
Maternal Serum, Cord and Human Milk Levels of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS), Association with Predictors and Effect on Newborn Anthropometry
by Maya Mahfouz, Mireille Harmouche-Karaki, Joseph Matta, Yara Mahfouz, Pascale Salameh, Hassan Younes, Khalil Helou, Ramzi Finan, Georges Abi-Tayeh, Mohamad Meslimani, Ghada Moussa, Nada Chahrour, Camille Osseiran, Farouk Skaiki and Jean-François Narbonne
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 455; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050455 - 14 May 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2433
Abstract
Background: The understanding of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) health effects is rapidly advancing among critical populations. Therefore, the objective of this study was to assess PFAS serum levels among Lebanese pregnant women, cord serum and human milk levels, their determinants, and effects [...] Read more.
Background: The understanding of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) health effects is rapidly advancing among critical populations. Therefore, the objective of this study was to assess PFAS serum levels among Lebanese pregnant women, cord serum and human milk levels, their determinants, and effects on newborn anthropometry. Methods: We measured concentrations of six PFAS (PFHpA, PFOA, PFHxS, PFOS, PFNA and PFDA) using liquid chromatography MS/MS for 419 participants, of which 269 had sociodemographic, anthropometric, environmental and dietary information. Results: The percentage of detection for PFHpA, PFOA, PFHxS and PFOS was 36.3–37.7%. PFOA and PFOS levels (95th percentile) were higher than HBM-I and HBM-II values. While PFAS were not detected in cord serum, five compounds were detected in human milk. Multivariate regression showed that fish/shellfish consumption, vicinity to illegal incineration and higher educational level were associated with an almost twice higher risk of elevated PFHpA, PFOA, PFHxS and PFOS serum levels. Higher PFAS levels in human milk were observed with higher eggs and dairy products consumption, in addition to tap water (preliminary findings). Higher PFHpA was significantly associated with lower newborn weight-for-length Z-score at birth. Conclusions: Findings establish the need for further studies, and urgent action to reduce exposure among subgroups with higher PFAS levels. Full article
13 pages, 2016 KiB  
Article
Assessment of Knowledge on Metal Trace Element Concentrations and Metallothionein Biomarkers in Cetaceans
by Vincent Leignel, Louis Pillot, Marcela Silvia Gerpe and Florence Caurant
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 454; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050454 - 12 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1600
Abstract
Cetaceans are recognized as bioindicators of pollution in oceans. These marine mammals are final trophic chain consumers and easily accumulate pollutants. For example, metals are abundant in oceans and commonly found in the cetacean tissues. Metallothioneins (MTs) are small non-enzyme proteins involved in [...] Read more.
Cetaceans are recognized as bioindicators of pollution in oceans. These marine mammals are final trophic chain consumers and easily accumulate pollutants. For example, metals are abundant in oceans and commonly found in the cetacean tissues. Metallothioneins (MTs) are small non-enzyme proteins involved in metal cell regulation and are essential in many cellular processes (cell proliferation, redox balance, etc.). Thus, the MT levels and the concentrations of metals in cetacean tissue are positively correlated. Four types of metallothioneins (MT1, 2, 3, and 4) are found in mammals, which may have a distinct expression in tissues. Surprisingly, only a few genes or mRNA-encoding metallothioneins are characterized in cetaceans; molecular studies are focused on MT quantification, using biochemical methods. Thus, we characterized, in transcriptomic and genomic data, more than 200 complete sequences of metallothioneins (mt1, 2, 3, and 4) in cetacean species to study their structural variability and to propose to the scientific research community Mt genes dataset to develop in future molecular approaches which will study the four types of metallothioneins in diversified organs (brain, gonad, intestine, kidney, stomach, etc.). Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Ecotoxicology)
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13 pages, 2912 KiB  
Article
Effect of Sublethal Concentrations of Metal Nanomaterials on Cell Energy Metabolism
by Chaoshuai Liang, Qiuyao Jiang, Zhenzhen Liu, Jian Yang, Jie Zhang, Shuping Zhang and Wei Xin
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 453; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050453 - 11 May 2023
Viewed by 1225
Abstract
Metallic nanomaterials (MNMs) are widely used in the medical field because of their photocatalytic, optical, electrical, electronic, antibacterial, and bactericidal properties. Despite the advantages of MNMs, there is a lack of complete understanding of their toxicological behavior and their interactions with cellular mechanisms [...] Read more.
Metallic nanomaterials (MNMs) are widely used in the medical field because of their photocatalytic, optical, electrical, electronic, antibacterial, and bactericidal properties. Despite the advantages of MNMs, there is a lack of complete understanding of their toxicological behavior and their interactions with cellular mechanisms that determine cell fate. Most of the existing studies are acute toxicity studies with high doses, which is not conducive to understanding the toxic effects and mechanisms of homeostasis-dependent organelles, such as mitochondria, which are involved in many cellular functions. In this study, four types of MNMs were used to investigate the effects of metallic nanomaterials on mitochondrial function and structure. We first characterized the four MNMs and selected the appropriate sublethal concentration for application in cells. Mitochondrial characterization, energy metabolism, mitochondrial damage, mitochondrial complex activity, and expression levels were evaluated using various biological methods. The results showed that the four types of MNMs greatly inhibited mitochondrial function and cell energy metabolism and that the material entering the mitochondria damaged the mitochondrial structure. Additionally, the complex activity of mitochondrial electron transport chains is critical for assessing the mitochondrial toxicity of MNMs, which may serve as an early warning of MNM-induced mitochondrial dysfunction and cytotoxicity. Full article
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23 pages, 2630 KiB  
Article
Phytogenically Synthesized Zinc Oxide Nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) Potentially Inhibit the Bacterial Pathogens: In Vitro Studies
by Mo Ahamad Khan, Showkat Ahmad Lone, Mohammad Shahid, Mohammad Tarique Zeyad, Asad Syed, Aquib Ehtram, Abdallah M. Elgorban, Meenakshi Verma and Mohammad Danish
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 452; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050452 - 10 May 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2249
Abstract
The usefulness of nanoparticles (NPs) in biological applications, such as nanomedicine, is becoming more widely acknowledged. Zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) are a type of metal oxide nanoparticle with an extensive use in biomedicine. Here, ZnO-NPs were synthesized using Cassia siamea (L.) leaf extract [...] Read more.
The usefulness of nanoparticles (NPs) in biological applications, such as nanomedicine, is becoming more widely acknowledged. Zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) are a type of metal oxide nanoparticle with an extensive use in biomedicine. Here, ZnO-NPs were synthesized using Cassia siamea (L.) leaf extract and characterized using state-of-the-art techniques; UV–vis spectroscopy, XRD, FTIR, and SEM. At sub-minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) levels, the ability of ZnO@Cs-NPs to suppress quorum-mediated virulence factors and biofilm formation against clinical MDR isolates (Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 and Chromobacterium violaceum MCC-2290) was tested. The ½MIC of ZnO@Cs-NPs reduced violacein production by C. violaceum. Furthermore, ZnO@Cs-NPs sub-MIC significantly inhibited virulence factors such aspyoverdin, pyocyanin, elastase, exoprotease, rhamnolipid, and the swimming motility of P. aeruginosa PAO1 by 76.9, 49.0, 71.1, 53.3, 89.5, and 60%, respectively. Moreover, ZnO@Cs-NPs also showed wide anti-biofilm efficacy, inhibiting a maximum of 67 and 56% biofilms in P. aeruginosa and C. violaceum, respectively. In addition, ZnO@Cs-NPs suppressed extra polymeric substances (EPS) produced by isolates. Additionally, under confocal microscopy, propidium iodide-stained cells of P. aeruginosa and C. violaceum show ZnO@Cs-NP-induced impairment in membrane permeability, revealing strong anti-bacterial efficacy. This research demonstrates that newly synthesized ZnO@Cs-NPs demonstrate a strong efficacy against clinical isolates. In a nutshell, ZnO@Cs-NPs can be used as an alternative therapeutic agent for managing pathogenic infections. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antioxidant Capacity of Natural Products for Toxicity Treatment)
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17 pages, 5705 KiB  
Article
The Role of G3BP1 Gene Mediates P38 MAPK/JNK Pathway in Testicular Spermatogenic Dysfunction Caused by Cyfluthrin
by Xiao-Yu Li, Jian Sun, Li-Ya Ma, Yong-Xin Xie, Na Zhang, Ji Zhao and Hui-Fang Yang
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 451; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050451 - 10 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1722
Abstract
In recent years, male infertility has received global attention and seriously affected the quality of human fertility, and pyrethroids (type II pyrethroids), as recognized environmental endocrine disruptors, may threaten male reproductive health. Therefore, in this study, we established an in vivo model for [...] Read more.
In recent years, male infertility has received global attention and seriously affected the quality of human fertility, and pyrethroids (type II pyrethroids), as recognized environmental endocrine disruptors, may threaten male reproductive health. Therefore, in this study, we established an in vivo model for the development of testicular and germ cell toxicity induced by cyfluthrin and explored the role and mechanism of the G3BP1 gene-mediated P38 MAPK/JNK pathway in testicular and germ cell damage caused by cyfluthrin to find early and sensitive indicators and new therapeutic targets for the development of testicular damage. Firstly, 40 male Wistar rats (about 260 g) were divided into a control group (corn oil), low dose group (6.25 mg/kg), middle dose group (12.5 mg/kg) and high dose group (25 mg/kg). The rats were anesthetized and executed after 28 days of poisoning on alternate days. Then, HE staining, transmission electron microscopy, ELISA, q-PCR, Western blot, immunohistochemistry, double-immunofluorescence and TUNEL were used to observe the pathology, androgen levels, oxidative damage and altered expression of the key factors of the G3BP1 and MAPK pathways in rat testes. The results showed that, compared with the control group, the testicular tissue and spermatocytes were superficially damaged with an increasing dose of cyfluthrin; furthermore, it could interfere with the normal secretion of the hypothalamic–pituitary–gonadal axis (serum GnRH, FSH, T and LH levels) and cause hypergonadal dysfunction. A dose-dependent increase in MDA and a dose-dependent decrease in T-AOC indicated that the oxidative–antioxidative homeostatic balance was disrupted. The Western blot and qPCR analysis revealed that G3BP1, p-JNK1/2/3, P38 MAPK, p-ERK, COX1 and COX4 proteins and mRNA expression were decreased, and p-JNK1/2/3, p-P38MAPK, caspase 3/8/9 proteins and mRNA expression were significantly increased. The double-immunofluorescence and immunohistochemistry results showed that the protein expression of G3BP1 decreased with an increasing dose of staining, while the expression of JNK1/2/3 and P38 MAPK were increased significantly. The positive expressions of G3BP1 were mainly located in the testicular germinal epithelium and germ cell layer, and the positive expressions of JNK1/2/3 were mainly located in the testicular germinal epithelium and sperm cells, while the positive expressions of P38 MAPK were located in all levels of the germ cells and spermatozoa. Our results demonstrated that exposure to cyfluthrin caused testicular and spermatocyte damage in rats, which could cause pathomorphology, altered androgen levels and a decreased antioxidant capacity. When the intracellular antioxidant capacity was impaired, G3BP1 expression and activity were inhibited, causing activation of the P38 MAPK/JNK pathway and activation of the intracellular apoptotic pathway, which, in turn, led to germ cell apoptosis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cellular, Molecular and Genetic Toxicity of Endocrine Disruptors)
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15 pages, 1252 KiB  
Article
Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Mixture during Pregnancy and Postpartum Weight Retention in the New Hampshire Birth Cohort Study (NHBCS)
by Yuting Wang, Caitlin Howe, Lisa G. Gallagher, Julianne Cook Botelho, Antonia M. Calafat, Margaret R. Karagas and Megan E. Romano
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 450; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050450 - 10 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1704
Abstract
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), widely used in industrial and consumer products, are suspected metabolic disruptors. We examined the association between a PFAS mixture during pregnancy and postpartum weight retention in 482 participants from the New Hampshire Birth Cohort Study. PFAS concentrations, including [...] Read more.
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), widely used in industrial and consumer products, are suspected metabolic disruptors. We examined the association between a PFAS mixture during pregnancy and postpartum weight retention in 482 participants from the New Hampshire Birth Cohort Study. PFAS concentrations, including perfluorohexane sulfonate, perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), perfluorooctanoate (PFOA), perfluorononanoate (PFNA), and perfluorodecanoate, were quantified in maternal plasma collected at ~28 gestational weeks. Postpartum weight change was calculated as the difference between self-reported weight from a postpartum survey administered in 2020 and pre-pregnancy weight abstracted from medical records. Associations between PFAS and postpartum weight change were examined using Bayesian kernel machine regression and multivariable linear regression, adjusting for demographic, reproductive, dietary, and physical activity factors; gestational week of blood sample collection; and enrollment year. PFOS, PFOA, and PFNA were positively associated with postpartum weight retention, and associations were stronger among participants with a higher pre-pregnancy body mass index. A doubling of PFOS, PFOA, and PFNA concentrations was associated with a 1.76 kg (95%CI: 0.31, 3.22), 1.39 kg (−0.27, 3.04), and 1.04 kg (−0.19, 2.28) greater postpartum weight retention, respectively, among participants who had obesity/overweight prior to pregnancy. Prenatal PFAS exposure may be associated with increased postpartum weight retention. Full article
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15 pages, 553 KiB  
Article
Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) Exposure and Abnormal Alanine Aminotransferase: Using Clinical Consensus Cutoffs Compared to Statistical Cutoffs for Abnormal Values
by Alan Ducatman, Youran Tan, Brian Nadeau and Kyle Steenland
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 449; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050449 - 10 May 2023
Viewed by 1581
Abstract
Background: Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) including perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) are ubiquitous environmental contaminants. Prior analysis in the large “C8 Health Project” population defined abnormal alanine aminotransferase (ALT) with statistically derived cutoffs (>45 IU/L in men, >34 IU/L in women). Objective: To explore [...] Read more.
Background: Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) including perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) are ubiquitous environmental contaminants. Prior analysis in the large “C8 Health Project” population defined abnormal alanine aminotransferase (ALT) with statistically derived cutoffs (>45 IU/L in men, >34 IU/L in women). Objective: To explore the degree to which PFOA was associated with modern, clinically predictive ALT biomarker cutoffs in obese and nonobese participants, excluding those with diagnosed liver disease. Methods: We reevaluated the relationship of serum PFOA to abnormal ALT using predictive cutoff recommendations including those of the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG). Evaluations modeled lifetime cumulative exposure and measured internal PFOA exposure. Results: ACG cutoff values (≥34 IU/L for males, ≥25 IU/L for females) classified 30% of males (3815/12,672) and 21% of females (3359/15,788) above ALT cutoff values. Odds ratios (OR) for above cutoff values were consistently associated with modeled cumulative and measured serum PFOA. Linear trends were highly significant. ORs by quintile showed near monotonic increases. Trends were stronger for the overweight and obese. However, all weight classes were affected. Conclusion: Predictive cutoffs increase the OR for abnormal ALT results. Obesity increases ORs, yet association with abnormal ALT pertains to all weight classes. The results are discussed in context of current knowledge about the health implications of PFOA hepatotoxicity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Emerging Contaminants)
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14 pages, 2195 KiB  
Article
Mono-(2-ethylhexyl) Phthalate (MEHP)-Induced Telomere Structure and Function Disorder Mediates Cell Cycle Dysregulation and Apoptosis via c-Myc and Its Upstream Transcription Factors in a Mouse Spermatogonia-Derived (GC-1) Cell Line
by Fangji Zhou, Chengwei Guo, Lingqiao Wang, Guowei Zhang, Jia Wang, Weiyan Chen, Ke Cui, Yao Tan and Ziyuan Zhou
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 448; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050448 - 10 May 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1489
Abstract
As a typical environmental endocrine disrupting chemical (EDC), di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) is thought to be related to reproductive disorders, especially in males. Growing evidence suggests that various EDCs may result in an impaired telomere structure and function, which is associated with male infertility. [...] Read more.
As a typical environmental endocrine disrupting chemical (EDC), di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) is thought to be related to reproductive disorders, especially in males. Growing evidence suggests that various EDCs may result in an impaired telomere structure and function, which is associated with male infertility. However, the adverse effect of DEHP on telomeres in male reproductive cells has rarely been studied, and the related mechanisms remain unclear. In this study, we tested the effects of mono-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (MEHP), the primary metabolite of DEHP, on telomere dysfunction in mouse spermatogonia-derived cells (GC-1) and the potential role of TERT and c-Myc in MEHP-induced spermatogenic cell damage. Results showed that MEHP induced cell viability inhibition, G0/G1 phase cell cycle arrest, and apoptosis in GC-1 cells in a dose-dependent manner. Shortened telomeres, reduced telomerase activity, and decreased expression of TERT, c-Myc, and upstream transcription factors of c-Myc were also observed in the MEHP-treated cells. In conclusion, it can be concluded that TERT-mediated telomere dysfunction may contribute to MEHP-induced G0/G1 phase cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in GC-1 cells through the impairment of c-Myc and its upstream transcription factors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cellular, Molecular and Genetic Toxicity of Endocrine Disruptors)
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16 pages, 3482 KiB  
Article
The Fate of Heavy Metals and Risk Assessment of Heavy Metal in Pyrolysis Coupling with Acid Washing Treatment for Sewage Sludge
by Zhiwei Li, Di Yu, Xuejiao Liu and Yin Wang
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 447; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050447 - 9 May 2023
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1697
Abstract
Pyrolysis is an emerging and effective means for sludge disposal. Biochar derived from sludge has broad application prospects, however, is limited by heavy metals. In this study, the fate of heavy metals (HMs) in pyrolysis coupling with acid washing treatment for sewage sludge [...] Read more.
Pyrolysis is an emerging and effective means for sludge disposal. Biochar derived from sludge has broad application prospects, however, is limited by heavy metals. In this study, the fate of heavy metals (HMs) in pyrolysis coupling with acid washing treatment for sewage sludge was comprehensively investigated for the first time. Most of the HMs redistributed in the pyrolyzed residues (biochar) after pyrolysis, and the enrichment order of the HMs was: Zn > Cu > Ni > Cr. Compared with various washing agents, phosphoric acid presented a superior washing effect on most heavy metals (Cu, Zn, and Cr) in biochars derived at low pyrolysis temperature and Ni in biochars derived at high pyrolysis temperature. The optimal washing conditions for heavy metals (including Cu, Zn, Cr, and Ni) removal by H3PO4 were obtained by batch washing experiments and the response surface methodology (RSM). The total maximum HM removal efficiency was 95.05% under the optimal washing specifications by H3PO4 (acid concentration of 2.47 mol/L, L/S of 9.85 mL/g, and a washing temperature of 71.18 °C). Kinetic results indicated that the washing process of heavy metals in sludge and biochars was controlled by a mixture of diffusion and surface chemical reactions. After phosphoric acid washing, the leaching concentrations of HMs in the solid residue were further reduced compared with that of biochar, which were below the USEPA limit value (5 mg/L). The solid residue after pyrolysis coupling with acid washing resulted in a low environmental risk for resource utilization (the values of the potential ecological risk index were lower than 20). This work provides an environmentally friendly alternative of pyrolysis coupling with acid washing treatment for sewage sludge from the viewpoint of the utilization of solid waste. Full article
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18 pages, 548 KiB  
Review
A Review: Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances—Biological Degradation
by Dijana Grgas, Ana Petrina, Tea Štefanac, Drago Bešlo and Tibela Landeka Dragičević
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 446; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050446 - 9 May 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 4117
Abstract
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), highly stable synthetic organic compounds with multiple carbon-fluorine bonds, are emerging as environmental contaminants, toxic, bioaccumulative, and environmentally persistent. PFASs are strongly resistant to biological and chemical degradation, and therefore PFASs present a challenge to researchers and scientists [...] Read more.
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), highly stable synthetic organic compounds with multiple carbon-fluorine bonds, are emerging as environmental contaminants, toxic, bioaccumulative, and environmentally persistent. PFASs are strongly resistant to biological and chemical degradation, and therefore PFASs present a challenge to researchers and scientists for a better understanding and application of remediation methods and biodegradation of PFASs and have become subject to strict government regulations. The review summarizes the recent knowledge of bacterial and fungal degradation of PFASs, as well as the enzymes involved in the processes of transformation/degradation of PFASs. Full article
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21 pages, 2481 KiB  
Review
Silent Contamination: The State of the Art, Knowledge Gaps, and a Preliminary Risk Assessment of Tire Particles in Urban Parks
by Lorenzo Federico, Andrea Masseroni, Cristiana Rizzi and Sara Villa
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 445; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050445 - 9 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3023
Abstract
Tire particles (TPs) are one of the main emission sources of micro- and nano-plastics into the environment. Although most TPs are deposited in the soil or in the sediments of freshwater and although they have been demonstrated to accumulate in organisms, most research [...] Read more.
Tire particles (TPs) are one of the main emission sources of micro- and nano-plastics into the environment. Although most TPs are deposited in the soil or in the sediments of freshwater and although they have been demonstrated to accumulate in organisms, most research has focused on the toxicity of leachate, neglecting the potential effects of particles and their ecotoxicological impact on the environment. In addition, studies have focused on the impact on aquatic systems and there are many gaps in the biological and ecotoxicological information on the possible harmful effects of the particles on edaphic fauna, despite the soil ecosystem becoming a large plastic sink. The aim of the present study is to review the environmental contamination of TPs, paying particular attention to the composition and degradation of tires (I), transport and deposition in different environments, especially in soil (II), the toxicological effects on edaphic fauna (III), potential markers and detection in environmental samples for monitoring (IV), preliminary risk characterization, using Forlanini Urban Park, Milan (Italy), as an example of an urban park (V), and risk mitigation measures as possible future proposals for sustainability (VI). Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Exposome Analysis and Risk Assessment)
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3 pages, 195 KiB  
Editorial
The Identification of Drug Abuse
by Maria Pieri
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 444; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050444 - 8 May 2023
Viewed by 1082
Abstract
Forensic toxicology has played a central role since its development in defining mechanisms of acute intoxication, often with a lethal outcome [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Identification of Drug Abuse)
13 pages, 1545 KiB  
Article
The Relationship of Arsenic Exposure with Hypertension and Wide Pulse Pressure: Preliminary Evidence from Coal-Burning Arsenicosis Population in Southwest China
by Qingling Wang, Haidong Tian, Wenjuan Wang, Shuhong Liu and Aihua Zhang
Toxics 2023, 11(5), 443; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11050443 - 8 May 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1415
Abstract
Evidence from epidemiological studies suggests that chronic arsenic exposure may be associated with a higher incidence of hypertension in the population. However, the effect of arsenic exposure on blood pressure remains unexplored in different populations, regions, and regarding arsenic biomarkers. This study investigated [...] Read more.
Evidence from epidemiological studies suggests that chronic arsenic exposure may be associated with a higher incidence of hypertension in the population. However, the effect of arsenic exposure on blood pressure remains unexplored in different populations, regions, and regarding arsenic biomarkers. This study investigated 233 arsenicosis patients and 84 participants from a non-arsenic-exposed area to explore the relationship between arsenic exposure and blood pressure and the occurrence of hypertension and wide pulse pressure (WPP) in patients with coal-burning arsenicosis. The results show that arsenic exposure is related to an increased incidence of hypertension and WPP in the arsenicosis population, primarily due to an induced increase in systolic blood pressure (SBP) and pulse pressure (PP) (OR = 1.47, 1.65, all p < 0.05). The dose–effect relationships between monomethylated arsenicals (MMA), trivalent arsenic (As3+), hypertension, and WWP were characterized following trend analyses (all p-trend < 0.05) in the coal-burning arsenicosis population. After adjusting for age, gender, body mass index (BMI), smoking, and alcohol usage, compared with low-level exposure, the high level of MMA exposure increases the risk of hypertension by 1.99 times (CI: 1.04–3.80) and the WPP by 2.42 times (CI: 1.23–4.72). Similarly, the high level of As3+ exposure increases the hypertension risk by 3.68 times (CI: 1.86–7.30) and the WPP by 3.84 times (CI: 1.93–7.64). Together, the results revealed that urinary MMA and As3+ levels are mainly associated with increased SBP and induce a higher incidence of hypertension and WPP. This study provides preliminary population evidence that cardiovascular-related adverse events such as hypertension and WPP ought to be noticed in the coal-burning arsenicosis population. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Human Toxicology and Epidemiology)
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