Mattsson A, Ullerås E, Patring J, Oskarsson A
Reprod. Toxicol. 34 (1) 31-42 [2012-08-00; online 2012-03-05]
The zebrafish embryotoxicity test has previously been combined with an external metabolic activation system (MAS) to assess developmental toxicity of metabolites produced by maternal metabolism. Due to toxicity of MAS the exposure was limited to one early and short period. We have modified the method and included additional testing time points with extended exposure durations. Using the anthelmintic drug albendazole as a model substance, we demonstrated stage-dependent toxic effects at three windows of zebrafish embryo development, i.e. 2-3, 12-14 and 24-28h post fertilization, and showed that MAS, by metabolic deactivation, reduced the toxicity of albendazole at all time points. Chemical analysis confirmed that albendazole was efficiently metabolized by MAS to the corresponding sulfoxide and sulfone, which are non-toxic to zebrafish embryos. To conclude, the modified zebrafish embryotoxicity test with MAS can be expanded for assessment of metabolites at different developmental stages.