Genotoxicity Effects in Freshwater Fish from a Brazilian Impacted River

  • Isac Silva de Jesus
  • Marta Margarete Cestari
  • Marcos de Almeida Bezerra
  • Paulo Roberto Antunes de Mello Affonso


This study evaluated the incidence of nuclear abnormalities (NA) in four fish species from an impacted river in Northeastern Brazil, characterized by accumulation of heavy metals and organic sewage. Two carnivores (Serrasalmus brandtii and Hoplias malabaricus) and two omnivore species (Oreochromis niloticus and Geophagus brasiliensis), used as food sources by local populations, were collected during the dry and the rainy season along Contas River basin. Nuclear abnormalities (bulbs, binuclei, lobes, micronuclei, notches, and vacuoles) were reported in all fish samples, with high occurrence in S. brandtii and H. malabaricus, species commonly found in local fish markets. This result agrees with previous analyses of accumulation of trace metals in both species, suggesting an association of genotoxic effects and biomagnification. Moreover, native specimens collected near urban areas presented higher frequencies of NA while O. niloticus seems to be more tolerant to environmental contamination. Therefore, effective policies are required to reduce the contamination of Contas River, since pollution by xenobiotics are potential threats to both local biodiversity and human population.


Biomagnification Ecotoxicology Micronuclei Risk assessment 



The authors thank UESB for the financial support, ICMBio/SISBIO for authorizing fish collection (License Number 26752-1) and local fisherman Valdemir for the assistance in collecting samples.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Isac Silva de Jesus
    • 1
  • Marta Margarete Cestari
    • 3
  • Marcos de Almeida Bezerra
    • 2
  • Paulo Roberto Antunes de Mello Affonso
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesUniversidade Estadual do Sudoeste da BahiaJequiéBrazil
  2. 2.Department of Chemistry and Exact SciencesUniversidade Estadual do Sudoeste da BahiaJequiéBrazil
  3. 3.Centro PolitécnicoUniversidade Federal do ParanáCuritibaBrazil

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