DDT: Disrupted Osmoregulatory Events in the Intestine of the Eel Anguilla rostrata Adapted to Seawater

Science  17 Sep 1971:
Vol. 173, Issue 4002, pp. 1146-1148
DOI: 10.1126/science.173.4002.1146


The drinking of seawater and absorption of water along with sodium across the intestinal epithelium are well-known osmoregulatory events in marine teleosts. The insecticide DDT impairs fluid absorption in intestinal sacs from eels adapted to seawater. Furthermore, this functional impairment has an enzymatic basis; DDT also inhibits the (Na+ and K+) activated, Mg2+-dependent adenosine triphosphatase in homogenates of the intestinal mucosa. Thus, the extreme sensitivity of teleosts to organochlorine pollutants may involve the disruption of osmoregulatory transport mechanisms.