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Proteomic changes in Corbicula fluminea exposed to wastewater from a psychiatric hospital


The increase use of pharmaceutical compounds in veterinary practice and human population results in the ubiquitous presence of these compounds in aquatic ecosystems. Because pharmaceuticals are highly bioactive, there is concern about their toxicological effects in aquatic organisms. Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess the effects of an effluent from a psychiatric hospital (containing a complex mixture of 25 pharmaceutical compounds from eleven therapeutic classes) on the freshwater clam Corbicula fluminea using a proteomic approach. The exposure of C. fluminea to this complex effluent containing anxiolytics, analgesics, lipid regulators, beta blockers, antidepressants, antiepileptics, antihistamines, antihypertensives, antiplatelets and antiarrhythmics induced protein changes after 1 day of exposure in clam gills and digestive gland more evident in the digestive gland. These changes included increase in the abundance of proteins associated with structural (actin and tubulin), cellular functions (calreticulin, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), T complex protein 1 (TCP1)) and metabolism (aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH), alcohol dehydrogenase, 6 phosphogluconate dehydrogenase). Results from this study indicate that calreticulin, PCNA, ALDH and alcohol dehydrogenase in the digestive gland and T complex protein 1 (TCP1)) and 6 phosphogluconate dehydrogenase in the gills represent useful biomarkers for the ecotoxicological characterization of psychiatric hospital effluents in this species.

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Correspondence to M. J. Bebianno.

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Bebianno, M.J., Sroda, S., Gomes, T. et al. Proteomic changes in Corbicula fluminea exposed to wastewater from a psychiatric hospital. Environ Sci Pollut Res 23, 5046–5055 (2016).

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  • Corbicula fluminea
  • Proteomics
  • Hospital effluent
  • Pharmaceutical compounds