Developmental Toxicity of the Organic Fraction from Hydraulic Fracturing Flowback and Produced Waters to Early Life Stages of Zebrafish (Danio rerio)

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

36 Scopus Citations
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Author(s)

  • Chenxing Sun
  • Yifeng Zhang
  • Erik J. Folkerts
  • Jonathan W. Martin
  • Greg G. Goss

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3820-3830
Journal / PublicationEnvironmental Science and Technology
Volume52
Issue number6
Online published27 Jan 2018
Publication statusPublished - 20 Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes

Abstract

Hydraulic fracturing (HF) has emerged as a major recovery method of unconventional oil and gas reservoirs and concerns have been raised regarding the environmental impact of releases of Flowback and Produced Water (FPW) to aquatic ecosystems. To investigate potential effects of HF-FPW on fish embryo development, HF-FPW samples were collected from two different wells and the organic fractions were isolated from both aqueous and particle phases to eliminate the confounding effects of high salinity. Each organic extract was characterized by non-target analysis with HPLC-Orbitrap-MS, with targeted analysis for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons provided as markers of petroleum-affected water. The organic profiles differed between samples, including PAHs and alkyl PAHs, and major substances identified by non-target analysis included polyethylene glycols, alkyl ethoxylates, octylphenol ethoxylates, and other high molecular weight (C49-79) ethylene oxide polymeric material. Zebrafish embryos were exposed to various concentrations of FPW organic extracts to investigate acute (7-day) and developmental toxicity in early life stages. The acute toxicity (LD50) of the extracted FPW fractions ranged from 2.8× to 26× the original organic content. Each extracted FPW fraction significantly increased spinal malformation, pericardial edema, and delayed hatch in exposed embryos and altered the expression of a suite of target genes related to biotransformation, oxidative stress, and endocrine-mediation in developing zebrafish embryos. These results provide novel information on the variation of organic profiles and developmental toxicity among different sources and fractions of HF-FPWs.

Citation Format(s)

Developmental Toxicity of the Organic Fraction from Hydraulic Fracturing Flowback and Produced Waters to Early Life Stages of Zebrafish (Danio rerio). / He, Yuhe; Sun, Chenxing; Zhang, Yifeng; Folkerts, Erik J.; Martin, Jonathan W.; Goss, Greg G.

In: Environmental Science and Technology, Vol. 52, No. 6, 20.03.2018, p. 3820-3830.

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