The synthetic estrogen 17α-ethinylestradiol (EE2) is a common component of hormone therapy and oral contraceptives and has been widely used for nearly 60 years. Numerous studies have shown that exposure to EE2 can affect embryonic development in a number of fish species. The effects of parental and embryonic EE2 exposure on embryo developmental toxicity and the underlying molecular mechanisms, however, have rarely been examined. In this study, embryos collected from parental EE2-exposed adult fish were examined to assess EE2-induecd toxicity during embryo development. The rate of embryo development including heart rate, hatching rate, and larval locomotion were measured to assess embryo developmental toxicity. The embryonic transcriptome was used to delineate the related developmental toxicity pathways. Our results suggest that parental and embryonic EE2 exposure resulted in growth retardation including a reduction in embryo heart rate, a delay in the appearance eye pigmentation, decreased hatching rate and impaired larval locomotion. In addition, gene ontology (GO) enrichment analysis, Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) analysis, and Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA) of transcriptome revealed that these impairments are controlled by estrogen receptor and related to eye structure, neuronal and synaptic structure, and behaviour. The key factors identified, including PRKAA2, APOB, EPHB2, OXTR, NR2E3, and POU4F2, could serve as biomarkers for assessing EE2-induced embryo developmental toxicity. For the first time, our results show that eye pigmentation is a potentially sensitive marker of EE2-induced embryo developmental toxicity. Copyright © 2022 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
CitationQin, X., Lin, H., Cao, Y., Wu, R. S. S., Lai, K. P., & Kong, R. Y. C. (2022). Embryo developmental toxicity in marine medaka (Oryzias melastigma) due to parental and embryonic 17α-ethinylestradiol exposure. Science of the Total Environment. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.160594
- Developmental toxicity
- Parental exposure
- Molecular mechanisms