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Chemosphere May 1, 2021; 270 129418.

Acute and chronic toxicity tests of systemic insecticides, four neonicotinoids and fipronil, using the tadpoles of the western clawed frog Silurana tropicalis.

Saka M , Tada N .

Extensive use of neonicotinoids and fipronil, which are popular systemic insecticides used in Japanese rice paddies, has raised concerns about their impacts on nontarget aquatic organisms such as amphibians. This study employed premetamorphic tadpoles of Silurana tropicalis and addressed the toxicity of four neonicotinoids (acetamiprid, clothianidin, dinotefuran, and imidacloprid) and fipronil. Acute toxicity tests were conducted under a 96-h semistatic exposure regime and median lethal concentration (LC50) values were calculated at 24-h intervals. All LC50 values of the four neonicotinoids exceeded 100 mg/L, suggesting their low acute toxicity to amphibians. Fipronil yielded much lower LC50 values (3.00-1.34 mg/L) and was highly toxic compared to the four neonicotinoids. Additionally, exposure to fipronil at >1 mg/L induced axial malformations, suggesting its teratogenicity. However, the LC50 values of fipronil were three orders of magnitude higher than the realistic concentrations in paddy water. Chronic toxicity tests were conducted with morphometric, gravimetric, and thyroid-histological endpoints. Premetamorphic tadpoles were exposed to each insecticide at two test concentrations: 0.1 and 1.0 mg/L for the four neonicotinoids; and 1/100 and 1/10 of the 96-h LC50 value for fipronil. Exposure to each insecticide continued until all tadpoles in the control reached late prometamorphic stages or the initial stage of metamorphic climax. At test termination, all insecticides showed no significant differences in any of the endpoints between the respective controls and chemical exposure groups. Overall, our results suggest that these insecticides alone do not directly affect amphibians through their larval stages at concentrations that likely occur in paddy water.

PubMed ID: 33423002
Article link: Chemosphere