Histopathological and biochemical alterations of the earthworm (Lumbricus Terrestris) as biomarker of soil pollution along Porsuk River Basin (Turkey)

Kilic G. A.

CHEMOSPHERE, vol.83, no.8, pp.1175-1180, 2011 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 83 Issue: 8
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2010.12.091
  • Journal Name: CHEMOSPHERE
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.1175-1180
  • Keywords: Porsuk River Basin, Soil pollution, Earthworm histopathology, Biomarker responses, EISENIA-FOETIDA, GLUTATHIONE, ANTIOXIDANT, RESPONSES, PESTICIDE
  • Anadolu University Affiliated: No


This study investigated biomarker responses of the earthworm Lumbricus terrestris in order to evaluate the soil pollution along Porsuk River Basin. Samples consisted of animals from six sites that are agricultural regions and a forested control. Histopathological and biochemical alterations were examined. Significant histopathological alterations were observed in animals from three of the sampling sites. There was an enlargement of epithelial cell lining, mucus cell hyperplasia and increase in mucus secretion. Circular and longitudinal muscles lost their structural integrity. Chloragogenous tissue was dilated and vocuolized. Necrosis was observed in the cells and tissues of some affected worms. A load of heavy metals in tissues of animals was determined. Heavy metals were found to be accumulated particularly in longitudinal muscles of animals. CAT activity was found to be increased in animals from three of the experimental sites. GST activity was also increased in five sites while it was stable in one site. The results have shown that animals from locations particularly that are close to urbanized and industrialized regions were seriously affected from the soil pollution around the basin. These results are reflecting the biological effects of soil pollution around Porsuk River Basin on the indicator organism L. terrestris and constitute an early warning of ecological change in relation to human health. (C) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.