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Glyphosate: Argentine scientists discover damage to the ovarian growth of crustaceans

Glyphosate: Argentine scientists discover damage to the ovarian growth of crustaceans


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Argentine scientists have discovered that both glyphosate and glyphosate-based herbicides affect the ovarian growth of crustaceans, during new in vivo and in vitro peer-reviewed studies on the model species: the estuary crab.Neohelice granulata.

The authors of the work are the researchers, Luciana Avigliano, Ivana S. Canosa, Daniel A. Medesani and Enrique M. Rodríguez, from the Department of Biodiversity and Experimental Biology, FCEN University of Buenos Aires. Institute of Biodiversity, Experimental and Applied Biology (IBBEA) CONICET-UBA. University City Buenos Aires Argentina

Crustacean reproduction is a complex process, involving ovarian growth in adult females during the critical period prior to spawning (referred to as the pre-reproductive period). During this period, immature (previtelogenic) oocytes develop into mature (vitellogenic) oocytes, which accumulate a large amount of yolk (for example, constitutive lipoproteins of yolk), which is in part synthesized by the oocytes themselves. Furthermore, this process is regulated by various hormones, some secreted by the nervous system (eg neurohormones) and others by specific endocrine cells, located in various tissues, including the ovary.

Glyphosate is currently one of the most widely used herbicides in the world, especially in countries where agriculture represents an important element in the national production of basic products, as in the case of Argentina. Recently, researchers from this country have characterized several effects of glyphosate, pure and formulated, on the ovarian growth of the estuarine crab Neohelice granulata. This species of crustacean has been widely studied during the last 30 years, in relation to almost all its biological aspects; in fact, N. granulata has been considered a model species, representative of a large number of groups of crustaceans.

One of the tests carried out on the N. granulata crab was the exposure of the females during the winter, that is, the three months of the pre-reproductive period that the ovary needs to mature, before spawning during the spring. At the end of the exposure period, a significant incidence of oocyte reabsorption in the ovary was observed in those women exposed to the Roundup Ultramax® glyphosate formulation, which has a glyphosate concentration (as the active ingredient) of 0.2 mg. / L, a concentration that can be found in the environment.

Furthermore, the decreased vitellogenin content per gram of ovary was also found in the same females. This last effect was also verified in vitro, after incubating isolated pieces of the ovary with the same commercial formulation and at the same concentration used in vivo. On the other hand, by evaluating the incorporation of a radiolabeled amino acid into ovarian proteins, it could be established, by comparison with a control group, that a partial inhibition of protein synthesis was responsible for the decrease in protein content. vitellogenin observed both in vivo and in vitro.

Is glyphosate, as an active ingredient in commercial formulations, responsible for the harmful effects?

In further trials, the researchers tried to elucidate the actual contribution of glyphosate itself to the deleterious effects on the crab ovary caused by the commercial formulation tested. To this, a new in vivo test was carried out throughout the pre-reproductive period. As seen with the commercial formulation, a significant incidence of oocyte reabsorption was observed, but at a higher concentration (1 mg / L). Taken together, the results obtained with both pure and formulated glyphosate suggest the existence of some synergistic effects between pure glyphosate and the adjuvants presented in the commercial formulation tested.

Pure glyphosate did not reduce the vitellogenin content per gram of ovary, but a new effect of the herbicide apparently masked in the commercial formulation due to the inhibitory effects that this formulation caused on the synthesis of vitellogenin, was the increase in the size of the pre- immature vitellogenic. oocytes, at the end of the in vivo test. Both effects caused by pure glyphosate (oocyte reabsorption and enlargement of pre-vitellogenic oocytes) were also corroborated by in vitro tests, exposing isolated pieces of ovary to a glyphosate concentration of 0.2 mg / l. The abnormal increase in the size of immature oocytes was consistent with a possibleendocrine disrupting effect caused by pure glyphosate, probably altering the secretion and / or the transduction mechanism of one or more hormones that control ovarian growth in crustaceans. This hypothesis is currently under verification.

This study was supported by grants from CONICET (PIP2015) and the University of Buenos Aires (UBACYT 2016 scientific program) .-

Go to study here

By Graciela Vizcay Gómez


Video: The Story Of Monsantos Glyphosate (June 2022).


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