Integrated biomarker responses in oysters Crassostrea gasar as an approach for assessing aquatic pollution of a Brazilian estuary
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The Laguna Estuarine System (LES), southern Brazil, suffers impacts from anthropogenic activities, releasing contaminants into the ecosystem. This study evaluated changes in biochemical and molecular biomarkers and contaminants concentrations in oysters Crassostrea gasar transplanted and kept for 1.5 and 7 days at three potentially contaminated sites (S1, S2, and S3) at LES. Metals varied spatiotemporally; S1 exhibited higher Ag and Pb concentrations, whereas Cd was present in S3. S2 was a transition site, impacted by Ag, Pb, or Cd, depending on the period. Organic contaminants concentrations were higher before transplantation, resulting in the downregulation of biotransformation genes transcripts levels. Phase II-related genes transcripts and metals showed positive correlations. Decreased levels of HSP90-like transcripts and antioxidant enzymes activity were related to increased pollutant loads. Integrated biomarker response index (IBR) analysis showed S1 and S3 as the most impacted sites after 1.5 and 7 days, respectively. Regardless of the scenario, LES contaminants pose a significant threat to aquatic biota.