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Toxicological effects and recovery of the corneal epithelium in Cyprinus carpio communis Linn. exposed to monocrotophos: an scanning electron microscope study



This study was conducted based on the evidence of fish habitats in North India being affected by organophosphate pesticides draining from agricultural fields into bodies of water, especially during the rainy season. Various tissues of fish such as scales, gills ovaries, kidney, and liver have been studied from the toxicological point of view, but the toxicological effects of aquatic pollutants on fish cornea have not been investigated to date. We conducted comparative toxicological studies on the cornea of Cyprinus carpio communis using two sublethal (0.038 and 0.126 ppm) concentrations of monocrotophos pesticide for 30 days. Corneas from all the groups were evaluated by a scanning electron microscope. The fish exposed to the monocrotophos pesticide developed corneal necrosis due to the formation of crystalloid-like structures, thinning and shrinkage of microridges on the corneal epithelium. After 30 days, fish from the monocrotophos-treated tank were transferred to normal environmental conditions. After 60 days under natural condition, epithelial cells did not fully recover. In conclusion, exposure to monocrotophos induces irreversible changes in the cornea of C. carpio communis. As fish and mammalian visual systems share many similarities, the reported finding may offer useful insights for further toxicological and ophthalmological studies in humans.