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Chronic Effects of Carbamazepine on Life-History Strategies of Ceriodaphnia dubia in Three Successive Generations

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Abstract

Trace quantities of pharmaceuticals are continuously being discharged into the environment through domestic and industrial wastewater effluents, causing concern among scientists and regulators regarding potential long-term impacts on aquatic ecosystems. These compounds and their metabolites are constantly interacting with organisms at various life-cycle stages and may differentially influence the development of embryonic, larval, juvenile, and adult stages. To understand the possible cumulative effects of exposure to carbamazepine (CBZ), a multigenerational approach was taken in which survival, reproduction, respiration, growth, brood size, and biomass of Ceriodaphnia dubia were assessed at sublethal concentrations over the course of three successive generations. CBZ exposure significantly decreased fecundity at 196.7 μg/L in the F0 and F1 generations over 2 weeks and acclimatized at 264.6 μg/L in the F2 generation. Similarly, a significant decrease of neonate dry weight was observed at the 196.7 μg/L CBZ treatment in the F1 generation, and it acclimatized at 264.6 μg/L treatment level in the F2 generation. Median time to first brood release was significantly delayed at 264.6 μg/L in the F2 generation, indicating slower maturation. Results over three successive generations are not different than what one would obtain by testing simply the F0 generation. Furthermore, the effects measured were observed at concentrations two orders of magnitude higher than are environmentally relevant, and it is unlikely that CBZ poses a substantial risk to the environment regarding the end points measured in this study. However, additional research through laboratory and field multigenerational studies may be required to understand the overall risk of CBZ to other nontarget organisms.

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Acknowledgments

We thank Sarah Andrewartha for respirometer use and Barney Venables, Tom Waller, Regina Edziyie, and Raji Dhital for useful discussions.

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The use of trade, firm, or brand names in this article is for identification purposes only and does not constitute endorsement by the authors.

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Correspondence to Kiran Lamichhane.

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Lamichhane, K., Garcia, S.N., Huggett, D.B. et al. Chronic Effects of Carbamazepine on Life-History Strategies of Ceriodaphnia dubia in Three Successive Generations. Arch Environ Contam Toxicol 64, 427–438 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00244-012-9845-5

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