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Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 21, Issue 18, pp 10638–10651 | Cite as

Mercury accumulation and tissue-specific antioxidant efficiency in the wild European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) with emphasis on seasonality

  • C. L. Mieiro
  • M. Dolbeth
  • T. A. Marques
  • A. C. Duarte
  • M. E. Pereira
  • M. Pacheco
Research Article

Abstract

The main goal of this study was to assess both mercury (Hg) accumulation and organs’ specific oxidative stress responses of gills, liver and kidney of Dicentrarchus labrax with emphasis on seasonality. Fish were collected in cold and warm periods in three stations: reference, moderated and highly contaminated sites. Our results showed that seasonal factors slightly influenced Hg accumulation between year periods (cold and warm) and strongly affected organs’ response basal levels. In contrast, seasonality seemed not to influence oxidative stress responses, since similar response patterns were obtained for both year periods, and moderate degree of antioxidant responses was obtained. Moreover, the oxidative stress profile may be attributed to Hg contamination degree, which showed organ-specific response and accumulation patterns. Hence, gills showed to be able to adapt to Hg contamination, and in opposition, kidney and liver demonstrated some vulnerability to Hg toxicity. The critical Hg concentrations indicated specific threshold limits for each organ. Overall, seasonality should be taken into account in monitoring programmes, helping to characterize the individuals’ reference values of response and thus to discriminate between the effects induced by natural causes or by contamination.

Keywords

Seasonality Mercury Oxidative stress Benchmark Wild fish 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This work was supported by European Funds through COMPETE and by National Funds through the Portuguese Science Foundation (FCT) within project PEst-C/MAR/LA0017/2013 and through a post-doctoral grant to C.L. Mieiro (SFRH/BPD/79445/2011) along with CESAM, University of Aveiro.

Supplementary material

11356_2014_3053_MOESM1_ESM.docx (110 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 109 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. L. Mieiro
    • 1
  • M. Dolbeth
    • 2
    • 3
  • T. A. Marques
    • 4
  • A. C. Duarte
    • 1
  • M. E. Pereira
    • 1
  • M. Pacheco
    • 2
  1. 1.CESAM and Department of ChemistryUniversity of AveiroAveiroPortugal
  2. 2.CESAM and Department of BiologyUniversity of AveiroAveiroPortugal
  3. 3.CFE, Department of Life SciencesUniversity of CoimbraCoimbraPortugal
  4. 4.Centre for Research into Ecological and Environmental ModellingUniversity of St AndrewsSt AndrewsScotland

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