Estrogenic activity in sediments contaminated by nonylphenol in Tokyo Bay (Japan) evaluated by vitellogenin induction in male mummichogs (Fundulus heteroclitus).

Research paper by R R Kurihara, E E Watanabe, Y Y Ueda, A A Kakuno, K K Fujii, F F Shiraishi, S S Hashimoto

Indexed on: 04 Aug '07Published on: 04 Aug '07Published in: Marine Pollution Bulletin


Estrogenic activity was determined in sediments collected from Tokyo Bay. Sampling was performed at five stations including the site near the sewage treatment plant. The most estrogenic sediment collected near the sewage treatment plant was fractionated into ten fractions using normal-phase high-performance liquid chromatography. Chemical analysis was carried out for each fraction and nonylphenol (NP, 20,700ngg(-1)drywt) was detected at a higher concentration than estron (2.39ngg(-1)drywt) and 17beta-estradiol (<0.7ng g(-1)dry wt). Furthermore, each fraction was administered to male mummichogs (Fundulus heteroclitus), and vitellogenin (Vtg) was measured after two weeks. The induction of Vtg was observed; this estrogenic potency could be attributed to the NP content in this fraction. This is the first report to suggest that the high NP concentration in the sediments from Tokyo Bay has the potential to induce Vtg in wild fish.