Binding properties to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors can explain differential toxicity of neonicotinoid insecticides in Chironomidae - INRAE - Institut national de recherche pour l’agriculture, l’alimentation et l’environnement Access content directly
Journal Articles Aquatic Toxicology Year : 2021

Binding properties to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors can explain differential toxicity of neonicotinoid insecticides in Chironomidae

Abstract

Neonicotinoids are neumactive insecticides commonly detected in freshwater ecosystems. Recent studies have indicated that these compounds are markedly toxic to Chimnomidae, a widespread family of ecologically important aquatic insects. However, despite their sensitivity, the pharmacological mechanisms driving neonicotinoid toxicity have yet to be characterized in these insect species. Here, we used a combination of saturation and competition binding studies to characterize neonicotinoid binding properties to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR) in two different Chimnomidae (Chironomus riparius and Chironomus dilutus) at two different life stages (larval and adult). Using radiolabeled imidacloprid ([H-3]-IMI), we characterized and compared receptor density (B-max), imidacloprid binding affinity (K-D), and receptor binding affinity (K-i) to three different neonicotinoid competitors (imidacloprid, clothianidin, and thiamethoxam). We then compared receptor density and binding affinity parameters derived for Chironomidae to data previously generated for other dipterans and agricultural pests. We found that there were limited differences in neonicotinoid binding between C. riparius and C. dilutus, with both organisms demonstrating high affinities for imidacloprid (K-D = 0.22-0.87 nM) and high receptor densities (B-max = 0.92-6.53 pmol/mg). However, there were significant differences between life-stages, with larvae expressing higher densities of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and higher imidacloprid affinities than adults. Moreover, there were compound-specific differences in receptor affinity, with larval stages displaying relative affinities (K-i) that generally correlated with acute neonicotinoid toxicity (e.g. clothianidin >= imidacloprid >>> thiamethoxam). Finally, compared to other dipterans and agricultural pests, Chironomidae display very high densities of high affinity nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, which likely contribute to their sensitivity. Results indicated that receptor-level differences in neonicotinoid binding may be responsible for ecotoxicological differences amongst distinct insect species, and they likely play a role in life stage-, and compound-level toxicity differences previously observed for Chironomidae. Overall, this study highlights the value of understanding the toxicological mechanisms of action of neonicotinoids in sensitive, non-target aquatic insects, to better predict adverse effects associated with unintentional neonicotinoid exposure.
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Dates and versions

hal-03329820 , version 1 (31-08-2021)

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E.M. Maloney, Emiliane Taillebois, Nicolas Gilles, C.A. Morrissey, K. Liber, et al.. Binding properties to nicotinic acetylcholine receptors can explain differential toxicity of neonicotinoid insecticides in Chironomidae. Aquatic Toxicology, 2021, 230, pp.105701. ⟨10.1016/j.aquatox.2020.105701⟩. ⟨hal-03329820⟩
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