Toxicity in relation to mode of action for the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans: Acute-to-chronic ratios and quantitative structure-activity relationships.

Environmental toxicology and chemistry / SETAC

PubMedID: 25994998

Ristau K, Akgül Y, Bartel AS, Fremming J, Müller MT, Reiher L, Stapela F, Splett JP, Spann N. Toxicity in relation to mode of action for the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans: Acute-to-chronic ratios and quantitative structure-activity relationships. Environ Toxicol Chem. 2015;.
Acute-to-chronic ratios (ACRs) and quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARs) are of particular interest in chemical risk assessment. Previous studies focusing on the relationship between the size or variation of ACRs to substance classes and QSAR models were often based on data for standard test organisms, such as daphnids and fish. In the present study, acute and chronic toxicity tests were performed with the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans for a total of 11 chemicals covering 3 substance classes (nonpolar narcotics: 1-propanol, ethanol, methanol, 2-butoxyethanol; metals: copper, cadmium, zinc; and carbamates: methomyl, oxamyl, aldicarb, dioxacarb). The ACRs were variable, especially for the carbamates and metals, although there was a trend toward small and less variable ACRs for nonpolar narcotic substances. The octanol-water partition coefficient was a good predictor for explaining acute and chronic toxicity of nonpolar narcotic substances to C. elegans, but not for carbamates. Metal toxicity could be related to the covalent index ?m2r. Overall, the results support earlier results from ACR and QSAR studies with standard freshwater test animals. As such C. elegans as a representative of small soil/sediment invertebrates would probably be protected by risk assessment strategies already in use. To increase the predictive power of ACRs and QSARs, further research should be expanded to other species and compounds and should also consider the target sites and toxicokinetics of chemicals. Environ Toxicol Chem 2015;34:2347-2353. © 2015 SETAC.