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PW12 Pesticide II
(PW207) Using flow cytometry to investigate the effects of atrazine on the metamorphosis of Xenopus laevis.
Freeman, Jennifer1, Rayburn, A1, 1 University of Illinois, Urbana, IL, USA
ABSTRACT- Herbicides have been reported to contaminate a majority of the surface waters in the Midwestern U.S. Speculations have arisen on the potential effects of herbicide contamination to anuran larvae developing in these surface waters. Atrazine is one of the most common herbicide contaminants. Recent studies have implicated that atrazine may have adverse effects on the development of anurans. In this study, Xenopus laevis tadpoles were exposed to concentrations of atrazine that have been found in the environment. Development and time to metamorphosis was measured initially by staging, weighing and counting the total number of nuclei in tadpoles and metamorphs. During development X. laevis tadpoles increase in weight and total number of nuclei. As metamorphosis continues weight and total number of nuclei decrease until the metamorphic climax is reached. This can create problems when only using weight and total number of nuclei as quantitative endpoints since a pre-metamorphic tadpole and a metamorph may actually have similar weights and number of nuclei even though they are at different developmental stages. Using flow cytometry nuclear DNA histograms of X. laevis were found to be stage dependent and to give a more sensitive measure of stage. Flow cytometric analysis was then utilized to assess the effects of atrazine on metamorphosis in X. laevis.
Key words: Xenopus laevis, flow cytometry, metamorphosis, atrazine
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