It is widely recognized that endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) released into the environment through anthropogenic activities can have short-term impacts on physiological and behavioral processes and/or sustained or delayed long-term developmental effects on aquatic organisms. While numerous studies have characterized the effects of EDCs on temperate fishes, less is known on the effects of EDCs on the growth and reproductive physiology of tropical species. To determine the long-term effects of early-life exposure to common estrogenic chemicals, we exposed Mozambique tilapia (Oreochromis mossambicus) yolk-sac fry to 17β-estradiol (E2) and nonylphenol (NP) and subsequently characterized the expression of genes involved in growth and reproduction in adults. Fry were exposed to waterborne E2 (0.1 and 1 μg/L) and NP (10 and 100 μg/L) for 21 days. After the exposure period, juveniles were reared for an additional 112 days until males were sampled. Gonadosomatic index was elevated in fish exposed to E2 (0.1 μg/L) while hepatosomatic index was decreased by exposure to NP (100 μg/L). Exposure to E2 (0.1 μg/L) induced hepatic growth hormone receptor (ghr) mRNA expression. The high concentration of E2 (1 μg/L), and both concentrations of NP, increased hepatic insulin-like growth-factor 1 (igf1) expression; E2 and NP did not affect hepatic igf2 and pituitary growth hormone (gh) levels. Both E2 (1 μg/L) and NP (10 μg/L) induced hepatic igf binding protein 1b (igfbp1b) levels while only NP (100 μg/L) induced hepatic igfbp2b levels. By contrast, hepatic igfbp6b was reduced in fish exposed to E2 (1 μg/L). There were no effects of E2 or NP on hepatic igfbp4 and igfbp5a expression. Although the expression of three vitellogenin transcripts was not affected, E2 and NP stimulated hepatic estrogen receptor (erα and erβ) mRNA expression. We conclude that tilapia exposed to E2 and NP as yolk-sac fry exhibit subsequent changes in the endocrine systems that control growth and reproduction during later life stages.
Celino-Brady, F. T., Petro-Sakuma, C. K., Breves, J. P., Lerner, D. T., & Seale, A. P. (2019). Early-life exposure to 17β-estradiol and 4-nonylphenol impacts the growth hormone/insulin-like growth-factor system and estrogen receptors in Mozambique tilapia, Oreochromis mossambicus. Aquatic Toxicology, 217. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aquatox.2019.105336