Antidepressants in stream ecosystems: Influence of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) on algal production and insect emergence

Erinn Richmond, Emma Rosi-Marshall, Sylvia Lee, Ross THOMPSON, Michael Grace

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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    Abstract

    The effects of pharmaceuticals on aquatic ecosystems are the subject of increasing environmental concern. Of particular interest are a suite of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), commonly prescribed to treat depression. SSRIs are now detected in the environment worldwide, but their effects on ecosystems are not well understood. We conducted replicated experiments testing for an ecosystem effect of SSRIs in streams. We used artificial stream mesocosms to expose natural biofilms and aquatic insect communities to concentrations (20 µg/L) of fluoxetine or citalopram or a mix of both (totaling 40 µg/L). These concentrations are the lowest found to have an effect on aquatic invertebrates in other studies. Treatments suppressed gross primary production by 29% and community respiration by >43% on rock biofilms but did not affect algal biomass or whole-stream metabolism. A common group of dipteran midges emerged earlier in all SSRI treated streams compared with the controls. Total biomass of emerged adults at day 14 was greater in the SSRI-exposed streams, suggesting that fluoxetine and citalopram may influence developmental processes in some stream insects. Ecosystem function and invertebrate population dynamics are sensitive to pharmaceuticals. Our study demonstrates that chronic exposure to fluoxetine and citalopram has the potential to affect aquatic biota and ecosystem function.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)845-855
    Number of pages11
    JournalFreshwater Science
    Volume35
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

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    antidepressants
    serotonin
    eclosion
    inhibitor
    insect
    insects
    ecosystems
    ecosystem
    drug
    ecosystem function
    drugs
    biofilm
    invertebrate
    insect communities
    aquatic invertebrates
    aquatic insects
    midges
    biomass
    chronic exposure
    aquatic ecosystem

    Cite this

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    abstract = "The effects of pharmaceuticals on aquatic ecosystems are the subject of increasing environmental concern. Of particular interest are a suite of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), commonly prescribed to treat depression. SSRIs are now detected in the environment worldwide, but their effects on ecosystems are not well understood. We conducted replicated experiments testing for an ecosystem effect of SSRIs in streams. We used artificial stream mesocosms to expose natural biofilms and aquatic insect communities to concentrations (20 µg/L) of fluoxetine or citalopram or a mix of both (totaling 40 µg/L). These concentrations are the lowest found to have an effect on aquatic invertebrates in other studies. Treatments suppressed gross primary production by 29{\%} and community respiration by >43{\%} on rock biofilms but did not affect algal biomass or whole-stream metabolism. A common group of dipteran midges emerged earlier in all SSRI treated streams compared with the controls. Total biomass of emerged adults at day 14 was greater in the SSRI-exposed streams, suggesting that fluoxetine and citalopram may influence developmental processes in some stream insects. Ecosystem function and invertebrate population dynamics are sensitive to pharmaceuticals. Our study demonstrates that chronic exposure to fluoxetine and citalopram has the potential to affect aquatic biota and ecosystem function.",
    keywords = "Aquatic insects, Ecosystem function, Emergence, Pharmaceuticals, SSRIs",
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    Antidepressants in stream ecosystems: Influence of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) on algal production and insect emergence. / Richmond, Erinn; Rosi-Marshall, Emma; Lee, Sylvia; THOMPSON, Ross; Grace, Michael.

    In: Freshwater Science, Vol. 35, No. 3, 2016, p. 845-855.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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    T1 - Antidepressants in stream ecosystems: Influence of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) on algal production and insect emergence

    AU - Richmond, Erinn

    AU - Rosi-Marshall, Emma

    AU - Lee, Sylvia

    AU - THOMPSON, Ross

    AU - Grace, Michael

    PY - 2016

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    N2 - The effects of pharmaceuticals on aquatic ecosystems are the subject of increasing environmental concern. Of particular interest are a suite of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), commonly prescribed to treat depression. SSRIs are now detected in the environment worldwide, but their effects on ecosystems are not well understood. We conducted replicated experiments testing for an ecosystem effect of SSRIs in streams. We used artificial stream mesocosms to expose natural biofilms and aquatic insect communities to concentrations (20 µg/L) of fluoxetine or citalopram or a mix of both (totaling 40 µg/L). These concentrations are the lowest found to have an effect on aquatic invertebrates in other studies. Treatments suppressed gross primary production by 29% and community respiration by >43% on rock biofilms but did not affect algal biomass or whole-stream metabolism. A common group of dipteran midges emerged earlier in all SSRI treated streams compared with the controls. Total biomass of emerged adults at day 14 was greater in the SSRI-exposed streams, suggesting that fluoxetine and citalopram may influence developmental processes in some stream insects. Ecosystem function and invertebrate population dynamics are sensitive to pharmaceuticals. Our study demonstrates that chronic exposure to fluoxetine and citalopram has the potential to affect aquatic biota and ecosystem function.

    AB - The effects of pharmaceuticals on aquatic ecosystems are the subject of increasing environmental concern. Of particular interest are a suite of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), commonly prescribed to treat depression. SSRIs are now detected in the environment worldwide, but their effects on ecosystems are not well understood. We conducted replicated experiments testing for an ecosystem effect of SSRIs in streams. We used artificial stream mesocosms to expose natural biofilms and aquatic insect communities to concentrations (20 µg/L) of fluoxetine or citalopram or a mix of both (totaling 40 µg/L). These concentrations are the lowest found to have an effect on aquatic invertebrates in other studies. Treatments suppressed gross primary production by 29% and community respiration by >43% on rock biofilms but did not affect algal biomass or whole-stream metabolism. A common group of dipteran midges emerged earlier in all SSRI treated streams compared with the controls. Total biomass of emerged adults at day 14 was greater in the SSRI-exposed streams, suggesting that fluoxetine and citalopram may influence developmental processes in some stream insects. Ecosystem function and invertebrate population dynamics are sensitive to pharmaceuticals. Our study demonstrates that chronic exposure to fluoxetine and citalopram has the potential to affect aquatic biota and ecosystem function.

    KW - Aquatic insects

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