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Tri and tetrachloroveratrole metabolites produced by bacterial o methylation of tri and tetrachloroguaiacol an assessment of their bioconcentration potential and their effects on fish reproduction


, : Tri and tetrachloroveratrole metabolites produced by bacterial o methylation of tri and tetrachloroguaiacol an assessment of their bioconcentration potential and their effects on fish reproduction. Canadian Journal of Fisheries & Aquatic Sciences 41(10): 1502-1512

Pseudomonas and Acinetobacter strains possessed the ability to transform, by O-methylation, components of spent bleachery effluent such as 4,5,6-trichloroguaiacol and high MW chlorinated lignin. O-methylation could be enhanced by the presence of a cosubstrate such as succinate or 4-hydroxybenzoate. Zebra fish (Brachydanio rerio) were used to examine bioconcentration potential, toxicity to embryos and larvae, and the sensitivity of the offspring of exposed adults. Bioconcentration factors (total wet wt) on a log scale were 3.5 and 4.4 for 3,4,5-trichloroveratrole and tetrachloroveratrole, respectively. The potential for bioconcentration of the other neutral metabolites was inferred from estimated values of the octanol-water partition coefficients. 3,4,5-Trichloroveratrole, tetrachloroveratrole, pentachloroanisole and 1,2,3-trichloro-4,5,6-trimethoxybenzene had threshold toxic concentrations to zebra fish embryos and larvae of 450, 100, 2.8 and 450 .mu.g .cntdot. l-1, respectively; all of them were capable of inducing, at somewhat lower concentrations, various deformations including curvature of the larvae and distortion of the notochord. Experiments on the effect on preexposure of adults to tetrachloroveratrole at a concentration of 16 .mu.g .cntdot. l-1 showed that the offspring were adversely affected, e.g., in a decreased viability of the embryos, lowered median survival time for larvae and greater sensitivity to tetrachloroveratrole. Both 3,4,5-trichloroveratrole (5-50 .mu.g .cntdot. kg liver fat-1) and tetrachloroveratrole (40-400 .mu.g .cntdot. kg liver fat-1) were detected in fish from localities subjected to discharge of bleachery effluent, and were absent in fish from uncontaminated localities. Identification of these compounds was based on gas chromatographic, and for tetrachloroveratrole, mass spectrometric, comparison with authentic compounds. Evidently, compounds present in bleachery effluent and those that may be produced in the environment by bacterial O-methylation have potentialy hazardous biological activities. These results shed fresh light on a hitherto neglected aspect of environment hazard assessment, and suggest that data for a given compound must be supplemented with that for metabolites that could be produced in the environment.

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Accession: 006839869

DOI: 10.1139/f84-185

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