The present study aimed to investigate the effects of dimethoate, atrazine and carbendazim on the antioxidant defences and neuronal function of the soil organism Enchytraeus albidus. Effects were studied at concentrations known to affect their reproduction (EC20, EC50 and EC90) and along time (2, 4, 8, 14 and 21 days). In general, responses were more pronounced at periods of exposure longer than 8 days and at the highest concentrations. Multivariate statistics (RDA-PRC) clearly displayed that exposure duration had an effect itself, biomarkers' responses showed interaction for all pesticides and catalase scored consistently high, indicating its relevancy in the group of measured markers. Univariate analysis indicated oxidative stress for all pesticides and atrazine induced oxidative damage in lipids. Atrazine seems to be effectively metabolized by GST of the biotransformation system, as its activity significantly increased after exposure to this pesticide. Dimethoate caused ChE inhibition, indicating an impairment of the neuronal function. Carbendazim impaired the antioxidant system, but no oxidative damage was observed, along with any effects on the ChE activity. The integrated biomarker response analysis was performed but we suggest modifications due to limiting artefacts.
- Integrated biomarker response (IBR)
- Neuronal function
- Oxidative stress
- Principal response curves (PRC)