Gonçalves, J. M., Beckmann, C., & Bebianno, M. J., et al. (2022). Assessing the effects of the cytostatic drug 5-Fluorouracil alone and in a mixture of emerging contaminants on the mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis. Chemosphere

The assessment of contaminants of emerging concern, alone and in mixtures, and their effects on marine biota requires attention. 5-Fluorouracil is a cytostatic category 3 anti-cancer medication (IARC) that is used to treat a variety of cancers, including colon, pancreatic, and breast cancer. In the presence of other pollutants, this pharmaceutical can interact and form mixtures of contaminants, such as adhering to plastics and interaction with metal nanoparticles. This study aimed to comprehend the effects of 5-Fluorouracil (5FU; 10 ng/L) and a mixture of emerging contaminants (Mix): silver nanoparticles (nAg; 20 nm; 10 μg/L), polystyrene nanoparticles (nPS; 50 nm; 10 μg/L) and 5FU (10 ng/L), in an in vivo (21 days) exposure of the mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis. A multibiomarker approach namely genotoxicity, the antioxidant defence system (superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidases (GPx), glutathione – S – transferases (GST) activities), and oxidative damage (LPO) was used to assess the effects in gills and digestive gland of mussels. Both treatments cause genotoxicity in mussel's haemolymph, and antagonism between contaminants was observed in the Mix. Genotoxicity observed confirms 5FU's mode of action (MoA) by DNA damage. The antioxidant defence system of mussels exposed to 5FU kicked in and counter balanced ROS generated during the exposure, though the same was not seen in Mix-exposed mussels. Mussels were able to withstand the effects of the single compound but not the effects of the Mix. For oxidative stress and damage, the interactions of the components of the mixture have a synergistic effect.


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