Volume 43 (2018) Issue 4 Pages 267-273
Developmental toxicity is an adverse developmental outcome, i.e., death, malformation, growth retardation, or functional deficiency. Recently, alternative methods of assessing developmental toxicity using zebrafish (Danio rerio) as a preliminary screening have attracted attention because of their low cost and high throughput. However, most toxicity evaluations have been based on a chemical concentration in an aqueous solution, and the chemical concentrations in embryos/larvae and their temporal behavior have in most cases been unclear, regardless of differences of chemical hydrophobicity. In the present study, we selected three teratogens with different hydrophobicities (caffeine, CA, log Kow -0.07; sodium valproate, VA, log Kow 0.26 (pH 7.4); and diethylstilbestrol, DES, log Kow 5.07), and we measured their concentrations in embryos/larvae exposed to these chemicals every 24 hr post-fertilization (hpf) until 144 hpf. Kinetic analysis based on a one-compartment fish model that yields first order kinetics for CA and VA revealed that concentrations of both CA and VA in embryos/larvae increased gradually and became saturated by around 100 hpf. In contrast, DES concentrations in embryos/larvae reached a maximum at 48 or 72 hpf and then decreased gradually. The present study suggests that the temporal pattern of chemical concentrations is a function of the hydrophobicity of the chemicals.