The growing presence of lanthanides in the environment has drawn the attention of the scientific community on their safety and toxicity. The sources of lanthanides in the environment include diagnostic medicine, electronic devices, permanent magnets, etc. Their exponential use and the poor management of waste disposal raise serious concerns about the quality and safety of the ecosystems at a global level. This review focused on the impact of lanthanides in marine organisms on reproductive fitness, fertilization and embryonic development, using the sea urchin as a biological model system. Scientific evidence shows that exposure to lanthanides triggers a wide variety of toxic insults, including reproductive performance, fertilization, redox metabolism, embryogenesis, and regulation of embryonic gene expression. This was thoroughly demonstrated for gadolinium, the most widely used lanthanide in diagnostic medicine, whose uptake in sea urchin embryos occurs in a time- and concentration-dependent manner, correlates with decreased calcium absorption and primarily affects skeletal growth, with incorrect regulation of the skeletal gene regulatory network. The results collected on sea urchin embryos demonstrate a variable sensitivity of the early life stages of different species, highlighting the importance of testing the effects of pollution in different species. The accumulation of lanthanides and their emerging negative effects make risk assessment and consequent legislative intervention on their disposal mandatory.

Toxicological Impact of Rare Earth Elements (REEs) on the Reproduction and Development of Aquatic Organisms Using Sea Urchins as Biological Models

Teresa Chianese
Secondo
;
Rosaria Scudiero
Ultimo
2022

Abstract

The growing presence of lanthanides in the environment has drawn the attention of the scientific community on their safety and toxicity. The sources of lanthanides in the environment include diagnostic medicine, electronic devices, permanent magnets, etc. Their exponential use and the poor management of waste disposal raise serious concerns about the quality and safety of the ecosystems at a global level. This review focused on the impact of lanthanides in marine organisms on reproductive fitness, fertilization and embryonic development, using the sea urchin as a biological model system. Scientific evidence shows that exposure to lanthanides triggers a wide variety of toxic insults, including reproductive performance, fertilization, redox metabolism, embryogenesis, and regulation of embryonic gene expression. This was thoroughly demonstrated for gadolinium, the most widely used lanthanide in diagnostic medicine, whose uptake in sea urchin embryos occurs in a time- and concentration-dependent manner, correlates with decreased calcium absorption and primarily affects skeletal growth, with incorrect regulation of the skeletal gene regulatory network. The results collected on sea urchin embryos demonstrate a variable sensitivity of the early life stages of different species, highlighting the importance of testing the effects of pollution in different species. The accumulation of lanthanides and their emerging negative effects make risk assessment and consequent legislative intervention on their disposal mandatory.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11588/876761
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