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Early-life stage and behavioural toxicity in zebrafish (Danio rerio) exposed to methadone, tramadol and codeine and determination of the opioids in Swedish effluent wastewater
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Biology Education Centre. The Department of Biomedical Sciences and Veterinary Public Health and the Department of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 30 credits / 45 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Drugs are occasionally detected in effluent wastewater due to the low removal efficiency in wastewater treatment plants. Wastewater consequently reaches the aquatic environment and can be a potential threat to aquatic organisms. One group of drugs that have been commonly identified in effluent wastewater and surface waters is the opioids. Methadone, tramadol and codeine are three types of opioids mainly used for treatment of pain and opioid addiction. The knowledge regarding toxicity of these opioids for water-living organisms is scarce.

The aim of this study was to evaluate the early life stage and behavioural toxicity of the opioids methadone, tramadol and codeine in zebrafish embryos, as well as to optimize HPLC-MS/MS methods for determination of the opioids in effluent wastewater. The zebrafish embryos were exposed for 6 days to opioid concentrations ranging between 0.022 and 100 mg L-1. Evaluation of several morphological, physiological and behavioural endpoints revealed that the swimming activity was the most sensitive endpoint. Tramadol and methadone caused decreased swimming activity, decreased heart rate, less embryonic spontaneous movement, earlier hatching time and malformations. The toxicity test with codeine resulted in no significant effects for any of the endpoints.   

Effluent wastewater samples from five wastewater treatment plants in Sweden were prepared by solid-phase extraction and the concentrations were measured to be lower than the observed toxic effect concentrations in the present study. Future studies can reveal if behaviour is affected at even lower concentrations than observed in the present study. Also chronic toxicity testing of the opioids at environmentally relevant concentrations is needed to reveal potential long-term effects.  

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. , 64 p.
Keyword [en]
Fish embryo toxicity test, zebrafish, methadone, tramadol, codeine, wastewater
National Category
Biological Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-326407OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-326407DiVA: diva2:1121035
Subject / course
Toxicology
Educational program
Master Programme in Biology
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-09-20 Created: 2017-07-08 Last updated: 2017-09-20Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

The full text will be freely available from 2021-07-11 11:44
Available from 2021-07-11 11:44

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association
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Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
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Output format
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  • asciidoc
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