Environmental Monitoring and Assessment

, Volume 127, Issue 1–3, pp 47–54 | Cite as

Monitoring Pollution in River MureŞ, Romania, Part III: biochemical effect markers in fish and integrative reflection

  • Heinz-R. KöhlerEmail author
  • Cristina Sandu
  • Volker Scheil
  • Erika M. Nagy-Petrică
  • Helmut Segner
  • Ilie Telcean
  • Gheorghe Stan
  • Rita Triebskorn
Original Article


Along a downstream stretch of River Mureş, Romania, adult males of two feral fish species, European chub (Leuciscus cephalus) and sneep (Chondrostoma nasus) were sampled at four sites with different levels of contamination. Fish were analysed for the biochemical markers hsp70 (in liver and gills) and hepatic EROD activity, as well as several biometrical parameters (age, length, wet weight, condition factor). None of the biochemical markers correlated with any biometrical parameter, thus biomarker reactions were related to site-specific criteria. While the hepatic hsp70 level did not differ among the sites, significant elevation of the hsp70 level in the gills revealed proteotoxic damage in chub at the most upstream site, where we recorded the highest heavy metal contamination of the investigated stretch, and in both chub and sneep at the site right downstream of the city of Arad. In both species, significantly elevated hepatic EROD activity downstream of Arad indicated that fish from these sites are also exposed to organic chemicals. The results were indicative of impaired fish health at least at three of the four investigated sites. The approach to relate biomarker responses to analytical data on pollution was shown to fit well the recent EU demands on further enhanced efforts in the monitoring of Romanian water quality.


Biomarker Chub Cytochrome P450 Danube tributary Hsp70 Monitoring Sneep 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Heinz-R. Köhler
    • 1
    Email author
  • Cristina Sandu
    • 2
  • Volker Scheil
    • 1
  • Erika M. Nagy-Petrică
    • 3
    • 4
  • Helmut Segner
    • 5
  • Ilie Telcean
    • 6
  • Gheorghe Stan
    • 7
    • 8
  • Rita Triebskorn
    • 9
    • 10
  1. 1.Animal Physiological EcologyUniversity of TübingenTübingenGermany
  2. 2.Institute of BiologyRomanian AcademyBucharestRomania
  3. 3.Animal Physiological EcologyUniversity of TübingenTübingenGermany
  4. 4.Biological FacultyWestern University ‘Vasile Goldiş’AradRomania
  5. 5.Center for Fish and Wildlife HealthUniversity of BerneBerneSwitzerland
  6. 6.Department of BiologyUniversity of OradeaOradeaRomania
  7. 7.Biological FacultyWestern University ‘Vasile Goldiş’AradRomania
  8. 8.Department of Life and Earth SciencesBabes-Bolyai UniversityCluj-NapocaRomania
  9. 9.Animal Physiological EcologyUniversity of TübingenTübingenGermany
  10. 10.Steinbeis-Transfer Center for Ecotoxicology and EcophysiologyRottenburgGermany

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