John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Toxicity of endosulfan on embryo‐larval development of the South American toad, Rhinella arenarum

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Endosulfan (ES) is a widely used pesticide despite its extreme toxicity to a variety of taxa and its worldwide ban. In this context, the aim of this study was to evaluate the acute and chronic toxicity of ES on the embryo‐larval development of the common South American toad, Rhinella arenarum. The results showed that lethal and sublethal effects increased with concentration and exposure time. The sensitivity to ES increased during the larval period, with the complete operculum stage (S.25) being the most sensitive (504‐h LC50 = 0.01 mg ES/L; LC10 = 0.004 mg ES/L). ES exposure caused morphological abnormalities such as general underdevelopment, edema, gill malformations and cellular dissociation, as well as neurotoxicity. Our results also showed that larvae exposed to concentrations of 0.005 and 0.01 mg ES/L completed metamorphosis earlier than controls, but with underdevelopment. The 240‐h Teratogenic Index (TI) was 6.13, implying a high risk for embryos to be malformed in the absence of significant embryonic lethality. Considering that the Hazard Quotients for chronic exposure were over 1, the level of concern value, and toxicity endpoints obtained in this study for Rhinella arenarum occurred at concentrations lower than the levels of ES reported in the environment, this pesticide should be considered a potential risk for this species. Environ Toxicol Chem © 2013 SETAC

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