Acetylcholinesterase activity in marine gastropods as biomarker of neurotoxic contaminants
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The acetylcholinesterase (AchE) activity was measured in three different species of marine gastropods namely Cronia contracta, Morula granulata and Planaxis sulcatus collected from selected stations (Arambol, Anjuna, Dona Paula, Vasco and Velsao) along the Goa coast for evaluation of the impact of neurotoxicants. The AChE activity was measured following the delta pH-metric method using acetylcholine bromide as the substrate and bromothymol blue as the indicator in phosphate buffer. The AChE activity was expressed as the micro moles of acetic acid liberated per mg of proteins per minute and shown in term of arbitrary units. The AChE activity was compared with respect to that from a relatively uncontaminated region (Anjuna) along the Goa coast. Among the different species of the marine gastropod studied Morula granulata was found to be most predominant followed by Cronia contracta and Planaxis sulcatus. All the species of marine gastropods showed highest AChE activity (Morula granulata, 51.09 units, Cronia contracta, 22.73 units, and Planaxis sulcatus, 10.17 units) at Anjuna. The AChE activity was found to be lowest at Dona Paula in respect of Morula granulata (30.04 unit) and Planaxis sulcatus (5.28 units) whereas in the case of Cronia contracta it was at Vasco (12.77 units). Along the Goa coast the AChE activities increased in the order: Dona Paula less than Vasco less than Velsao less than Arambol less than Anjuna. The increase in AChE activities along the Goa coast clearly indicated the extent of contamination of the coastal environment by neurotoxic contaminants.
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