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Pharmaecological perspectives: Exposure studies using coastal Baltic Sea organisms
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences.
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis investigates the effects of pharmaceutical substances on coastal Baltic Sea organisms. Despite an increasing awareness of the occurrence of pharmaceuticals in various aquatic compartments, current knowledge of their possible effects on non-target organisms is limited. Especially scarce is the knowledge concerning possible long-term effects, mixture-effects, effects on non-standard test organisms and indirect effects from interactions among organisms. Also the environmental fate, availability and distribution of pharmaceuticals between sediment, water and biota is only rarely investigated.

The aim of this thesis was therefore to investigate the biological effects of pharmaceuticals, and their distribution in organisms of a coastal Baltic Sea community. In four studies, blue mussels, amphipods and macroalgae were exposed to pharmaceuticals in laboratory experiments. The effects from exposure, as well as recovery from the same, were studied on different physiological variables. With increasing complexity of experiment designs, the tested substances were found to affect aquatic organisms from different hierarchical levels both through direct negative effects, as well as through indirect positive effects within model communities. Moreover, the studies showed that the organisms were affected by exposure to environmentally relevant concentrations, but also that exposed organisms could recover from the exposure. Effects from pharmaceutical mixtures occurred in lower concentrations than effects from single pharmaceutical substances, and high internal concentrations of two pharmaceuticals – diclofenac and propranolol – were detected in exposed organisms.

The detected effects and the uptake of pharmaceuticals in biota demonstrate a possible problem for aquatic environments, but especially for the Baltic Sea, since this is a naturally sensitive ecosystem with low species diversity, low functional redundancy and a history of heavy pollution.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences, Stockholm Univeristy , 2014. , 58 p.
Keyword [en]
Pharmaceuticals, Baltic Sea, Mytilus edulis trossulus, Fucus vesiculosus, Ceramium tenuicorne, Gammarus spp., Direct effects, Inter-specific interactions
National Category
Ecology
Research subject
Marine Ecotoxicology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-101160ISBN: 978-91-7447-871-6 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-101160DiVA: diva2:699449
Public defence
2014-04-04, Nordenskiöldsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 12, Stockholm, 13:30 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 2: Manuscript. Paper 4: Manuscript.

Available from: 2014-03-13 Created: 2014-02-27 Last updated: 2016-05-06Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Physiological effects of diclofenac, ibuprofen and propranolol on Baltic Sea blue mussels
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Physiological effects of diclofenac, ibuprofen and propranolol on Baltic Sea blue mussels
2010 (English)In: Aquatic Toxicology, ISSN 0166-445X, E-ISSN 1879-1514, Vol. 99, no 2, 223-231 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Pharmaceuticals are constantly dispersed into the environment and little is known of the effects on non-target organisms. This is an issue of growing concern. In this study, Baltic Sea blue mussels, Mytilus edulis trossulus, were exposed to diclofenac, ibuprofen and propranolol, three pharmaceuticals that are produced and sold in large quantities and have a widespread occurrence in aquatic environments. The mussels were exposed to pharmaceuticals in concentrations ranging from 1 to 10,000 mu g l(-1). The pharmaceuticals were added both separately and in combination. Mussels exposed to high concentrations of pharmaceuticals showed a clear response compared to controls. Firstly, they had a significantly lower scope for growth, which indicates that the organisms had a smaller part of their energy available for normal metabolism, and secondly, they had lower byssus strength and lower abundance of byssus threads, resulting in reduced ability to attach to the underlying substrate. Mussels exposed to lower concentrations showed tendencies of the same results. The concentration of diclofenac and propranolol was quantified in the mussels using both liquid chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry (LC-MS). The measurements showed a significantly higher concentration in the organisms as compared to the water the mussels were exposed to; the uptake reached concentrations two orders of magnitudes higher than found in sewage treatment plant effluents. This study showed that common pharmaceuticals are taken up and negatively affect the physiology of a non-target species at levels of two to three orders of magnitudes higher than found in sewage treatment plant effluents.

National Category
Biological Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-49321 (URN)10.1016/j.aquatox.2010.04.017 (DOI)
Available from: 2010-12-13 Created: 2010-12-13 Last updated: 2017-12-11Bibliographically approved
2. Response and recovery of Baltic Sea blue mussels from exposure to pharmaceuticals
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Response and recovery of Baltic Sea blue mussels from exposure to pharmaceuticals
2015 (English)In: Marine Ecology Progress Series, ISSN 0171-8630, E-ISSN 1616-1599, Vol. 526, 89-100 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Physiological responses to, and recovery from, exposure to 3 concentrations of a pharmaceutical mixture (diclofenac and propranolol) were examined experimentally in Baltic Sea blue mussels Mytilus edulis trossulus collected with increasing distance to a wastewater treatment plant (WTP) outlet. Respiration, absorption efficiency and consumption were measured, and also combined into scope for growth (SFG). The response and recovery patterns varied both between exposure concentrations and sampling site within the bay. After exposure, mussels exposed to the highest concentration (2000 mu g l(-1)) in general had lower SFG, and mussels from 2 (out of 3) sites exposed to the medium concentration (200 mu g l(-1)) had higher SFG than the controls. In general, mussels from the 2 sites nearest the WTP recovered from the exposure response, while individuals collected further from the WTP outlet were more affected by the exposure and did not recover to the same extent. The response pattern of consumption was mainly affected by exposure concentration, whereas respiration was affected by all 3 factors (concentration, time of measurement, sampling site). Absorption efficiency was not affected at all. The differences in responses and recovery patterns could possibly be explained by the mussels sampled closer to the WTP having a history of higher food availability, improving their general health status, and/or a history of pre-exposure to natural disturbances, as well as to the test substances, via the WTP effluent. Pre-exposure to stressors could have both positive and negative impact on a community by increasing the resilience towards some stressors, but may also reduce the adaptability when facing other stressors.

Keyword
Mytilus edulis trossulus, Baltic Sea, Physiology, Pollutants, Disturbance recovery, Pre-exposure, Effluent gradient
National Category
Biological Sciences Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Ecotoxicology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-117721 (URN)10.3354/meps11213 (DOI)000354394900007 ()
Available from: 2015-06-10 Created: 2015-06-01 Last updated: 2017-12-04Bibliographically approved
3. Effect studies of human pharmaceuticals on Fucus vesiculosus and Gammarus spp
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Effect studies of human pharmaceuticals on Fucus vesiculosus and Gammarus spp
2012 (English)In: Marine Environmental Research, ISSN 0141-1136, E-ISSN 1879-0291, Vol. 74, 1-8 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In two experiments, the human pharmaceutical propranolol negatively affected the physiology of two test organisms, Fucus vesiculosus and Gammarus spp. from a Baltic Sea littoral community in a concentration of 1000 mu g l(-1). Some effects were also observed for the lower, more ecologically relevant concentrations (10 mu g l(-1) and 100 mu g l(-1)). The effects on E vesiculosus not only increased with increasing concentration, but also with exposure time; while the effects on Gammarus spp. were more inconsistent over time. No clear effects of the pharmaceuticals diclofenac and ibuprofen were observed for any of the organisms. Physiological parameters measured were GP:R-ratio, chlorophyll fluorescence and release of coloured dissolved organic matter, respiration and ammonium excretion. Pharmaceutical substances are repeatedly detected in the Baltic Sea which is the recipient for SIP effluents from more than 85 million people living in the catchment area, but the knowledge of their effects on non-target organisms is still very limited.

Keyword
Baltic Sea, Sub-lethal effects, Algae, Amphipod, beta-blocker, NSAID
National Category
Biological Sciences Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-76976 (URN)10.1016/j.marenvres.2011.11.001 (DOI)000300819000001 ()
Note

4

Available from: 2012-06-14 Created: 2012-05-28 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
4. Community Interactions Modify the Effects of Pharmaceutical Exposure: A Microcosm Study on Responses to Propranolol in Baltic Sea Coastal Organisms
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Community Interactions Modify the Effects of Pharmaceutical Exposure: A Microcosm Study on Responses to Propranolol in Baltic Sea Coastal Organisms
Show others...
2014 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 9, no 4, e93774Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study investigated the uptake and effects of a common human pharmaceutical, propranolol, on the structure and function of a coastal Baltic Sea model community consisting of macroalga (Ceramium tenuicorne), mussels (Mytilus edulis trossulus), amphipods (Gammarus spp.), water and sediment. The most sensitive species, the mussel, was affected to the same extent as in previous single species studies, while the effects on the amphipod and alga were smaller or even positive compared to experiments performed in less complex test systems. The observed cascade of beneficial effects was a result of inter-specific species interactions that buffered for more severe effects. The poor condition of the mussel led to a feeding shift from alga to mussel by the amphipods. The better food quality, due to the dietary shift, counteracted the effects of the exposure. Less amphipod grazing, together with increased levels of nutrients in the water was favourable for the alga, despite the negative effects of propranolol. This microcosm study showed effects on organisms on different organizational levels as well as interactions among the different components resulting in indirect exposure effects of both functional and structural nature. The combination of both direct and indirect effects would not have been detected using simpler single- or even two-species study designs. The observed structural changes would in the natural environment have a long-term influence on ecosystem function, especially in a low-biodiversity ecosystem like the Baltic Sea.

National Category
Biological Sciences
Research subject
Ecotoxicology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-103957 (URN)10.1371/journal.pone.0093774 (DOI)000334160900047 ()
Note

AuthorCount:5;

Available from: 2014-06-09 Created: 2014-05-27 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved

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