Environmental toxicology and chemistry

Effects of sulfachlorpyridazine in MS.3-arable land: a multispecies soil system for assessing the environmental fate and effects of veterinary medicines.

PMID 15839554


A multispecies soil system (MS.3) has been used to evaluate the ecological effects of veterinary pharmaceuticals in soil as a result of routine agricultural practices. Different experimental conditions were tested and the variation of the different parameters was evaluated for a final design. A protocol for the MS.3-arable land is presented here. Emergence of seedlings, plant elongation and biomass, earthworm mortality, and soil microbial enzymatic activities have been selected as toxicological endpoints for soil organisms. Toxicity tests were conducted with the leachate on aquatic organisms (in vitro fish cell lines, daphnids, and algae). The system was used for assessing the effects of the antimicrobial sulfachlorpyridazine that was tested in triplicate at concentrations of 0.01, 1, and 100 mg/kg. The chemical was mixed uniformly with a 20-cm depth soil column to resemble the distribution of manure within arable soil. Reversible and nonreversible effects on soil enzymatic activities were observed at 1 and 100 mg/kg, respectively. Earthworms were not affected. Significant reduction of plant elongation and biomass was observed at the highest concentration. Degradation and leaching contributed to the dissipation of sulfachlorpyridazine from the soil column. The undiluted leachate was highly toxic to Daphnia magna. The parent chemical was assumed responsible for the leachate toxicity although the role of mobile metabolites could not be excluded fully. No significant effects were observed for green algae Chlorella vulgaris and for the rainbow trout established cell lines RTG-2 (rainbow trout gonads) and RTL-WI (rainbow trout liver). The MS.3 system offers a cost-effective experimental approach to measure simultaneously fate and effects of chemicals on a realistic soil system under controlled laboratory conditions. The advantages of using MS.3-effect endpoints are discussed.

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Sulfachloropyridazine, VETRANAL®, analytical standard