Cd and Zn Uptake Kinetics in Daphnia magna in Relation to Cd Exposure History

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6051-6058
Journal / PublicationEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number22
Online published15 Oct 2004
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2004
Externally publishedYes


The uptake kinetics of Cd and Zn in a freshwater cladoceran Daphnia magna after exposure to different concentrations of Cd for various durations was quantified. The accumulated Cd concentrations increased with ambient Cd concentration and exposure duration. As a detoxification mechanism, metallothioneins (MTs) were induced when the Cd preexposure condition was beyond the noneffect threshold. The MT induction was dependent on both Cd concentration and duration of preexposure. Increasing the Cd exposure concentration to 20 μg L-1 for 3 d caused a 44% reduction in Cd assimilation efficiency (AE, the fraction assimilated by the animals after digestion) by the daphnids from the dietary phase, but a 2.4-fold increase in Zn AE. Generally, the dissolved metal uptake rate was not significantly affected by the different Cd preexposure regimes, except at a much higher Cd concentration (20 μg L-1) when the Zn influx was enhanced. Significant effects from Cd exposure on the ingestion rate of the daphnids were also observed. When the MT synthesis was not coupled with the accumulated Cd tissue burden (e.g., a delay in MT synthesis), apparent Cd toxicity on the feeding behavior and the Cd AE was observed, thus highlighting the importance of MTs in modifying the metal uptake kinetics of D. magna. Overall, daphnids responded to acute Cd exposure by reducing their Cd AE and ingestion, whereas they developed a tolerance to Cd following chronic exposure. The bioavailability of Zn was enhanced as a result of Cd preexposure. This study highlights the important influences of Cd preexposure history on the biokinetics and potential toxicity of Cd and Zn to D. magna.