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Ameliorative effects of sodium chloride on acute copper toxicity among Cope's gray tree frog (Hyla chrysoscelis) and green frog (Rana clamitans) embryos

Authors

  • Maria G. Brown,

    1. Urban Environmental Biogeochemistry Laboratory, Towson University, Towson, Maryland, USA
    2. Huxley College of the Environment, Western Washington University, Bellingham, Washington, USA
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  • Emily K. Dobbs,

    1. Urban Environmental Biogeochemistry Laboratory, Towson University, Towson, Maryland, USA
    2. Transylvania University, Lexington, Kentucky, USA
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  • Joel W. Snodgrass,

    1. Urban Environmental Biogeochemistry Laboratory, Towson University, Towson, Maryland, USA
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  • David R. Ownby

    Corresponding author
    1. Urban Environmental Biogeochemistry Laboratory, Towson University, Towson, Maryland, USA
    • Urban Environmental Biogeochemistry Laboratory, Towson University, Towson, Maryland, USA.
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Abstract

Urban stormwater runoff is composed of a mixture of components, including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, metals, deicing agents, and many others. The fate of these chemicals is often in stormwater detention ponds that are used by amphibians for breeding. Among aquatic organisms, the toxic mechanism for many metals involves interference with active Na+ and Cl uptake. Addition of cations has been shown to reduce the toxicity of metals among some aquatic organisms through competitive inhibition, but no studies have investigated the interaction between NaCl and Cu among amphibian embryos and larvae. To determine the degree to which NaCl may ameliorate the toxicity of Cu to amphibian embryos and larvae, the authors exposed Hyla chrysoscelis (Cope's gray treefrogs) and Rana (Lithobates) clamitans (green frogs) to seven levels of Cu and NaCl in fully factorial experiments. When exposure was in artificial hard water, Cu was highly toxic to both species (96-h median lethal concentration [LC50] of 44.7 µg/L and 162.6 µg/L for H. chrysoscelis and R. clamitans, respectively). However, approximately 500 mg/L of NaCl eliminated Cu toxicity over the range of Cu concentrations used in the experiments (maximum 150 µg Cu/L for H. chrysoscelis and 325 µg Cu/L for R. clamitans). The current results suggest that NaCl is likely responsible for the toxic effects of NaCl and metal mixtures that might be typical of runoff from road surfaces in northern latitudes. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 2012;31:836–842. © 2012 SETAC

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