Oxidative stress in triazine pesticide toxicity: a review of the main biomarker findings

Open access

Abstract

This review article provides a summary of the studies relying on oxidative stress biomarkers (lipid peroxidation and antioxidant enzymes in particular) to investigate the effects of atrazine and terbuthylazine exposure in experimental animals and humans published since 2010. In general, experimental animals showed that atrazine and terbuthylazine exposure mostly affected their antioxidant defences and, to a lesser extent, lipid peroxidation, but the effects varied by the species, sex, age, herbicide concentration, and duration of exposure. Most of the studies involved aquatic organisms as useful and sensitive bio-indicators of environmental pollution and important part of the food chain. In laboratory mice and rats changes in oxidative stress markers were visible only with exposure to high doses of atrazine. Recently, our group reported that low-dose terbuthylazine could also induce oxidative stress in Wistar rats. It is evident that any experimental assessment of pesticide toxic effects should take into account a combination of several oxidative stress and antioxidant defence biomarkers in various tissues and cell compartments. The identified effects in experimental models should then be complemented and validated by epidemiological studies. This is important if we wish to understand the impact of pesticides on human health and to establish safe limits.

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