The toxicity of monochlorobenzene (CB) was investigated in rainbow trout following acute intraperitoneal (i.p.) administration and chronic exposure via the water in a continuously flowing system for 15 or 30 days.
In the acute study overt toxicity and hepatotoxicity were monitored over a 96-h time period. Variables measured to assess toxicity included weight changes, liver weight to body weight ratios, behavioral changes, alanine aminotransferase activity (GPT), sulfobromophthalein (BSP) retention, total plasma protein concentration and liver histopathology. In the chronic study the same measures of toxicity were followed as well as food consumption and alkaline phosphatase (AP) activity.
Upon acute i.p. exposure the toxicant (9.8 mmol/kg) caused behavioral changes in the fish which were consistent with the known anesthetic properties of CB in mammals. Elevations in BSP retention and GPT activity, and histopathology indicated that CB was hepatotoxic in fish.
The LC50 of CB in trout exposed via the water for 96 h was 4.7 mg/l. Chronic exposure of trout to 2 or 3 mg/l CB resulted in similar behavioral changes as seen in the acute study. Liver toxicity was evident from elevations in GPT activity. BSP retention and AP activity appeared to be affected by the nutritional status of the trout as much as by the CB treatment. After 30 days of exposure to 3 mg/l CB, trout appeared to have developed some tolerance to the toxic effects.