In vivo genotoxicity of treated water containing the cylindrospermopsin-producer Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii

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Cylindrospermopsin (CYN) is an alkaloid commonly produced by some cyanobacteria that has been implicated in outbreaks of human illness. The aim of this study was to investigate the genotoxicity of Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii cellular content (including CYN) and its byproducts resulting from chlorination during water treatment. DNA damage in blood and liver cells was analysed by the comet assay and micronucleus test (MN). Mice were injected intraperitoneally with the following treatments: (a) physiological saline, (b) treated water, (c) treated water plus C. raciborskii extract (CYN producer strain, CYPO-011 K), (d) C. raciborskii extract (CYN producer strain, CYPO-011 K), (e) C. raciborskii extract (CYN non producer strain), and (f) treated water plus C. raciborskii extract (CYN non producer strain) extract. After 48 h, samples were taken to perform tests (blood and liver cells to the comet assay and bone marrow to MN test). The CYPO-011 K had a genotoxic and mutagenic effects on liver and bone marrow cells. The group that received chlorine-treated water plus CYPO-011 K also exhibited genotoxic effects in the liver, as well as in the blood, and a mutagenic effect in blood marrow cells. The results emphasise the need of improving CYN monitoring in waters bodies in order to reduce the risk of human exposure.

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