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IRSN, Institut de radioprotection et de sûreté nucléaire

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Enhancing Nuclear Safety


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Effects of chronic external gamma irradiation on growth and reproductive success of Daphnia magna.


Journal title : Journal of Environmental Radioactivity
Volume : 99
Issue : 1
Pagination : 134-145
Publication date : 01/01/2008

Summary

Aquatic invertebrates (water flea Daphnia magna) were exposed to external gamma radiation at dose rates ranging from 0.4 mGy h-1 to 31 mGy h-1. Sublethal effects were followed over a 23-day period (i.e. 5 broods). Gamma radiation caused no significant change in somatic growth. Mass-specific respiration rate was significantly lower at 31 mGy h-1 than in the control. Broods were deposited earlier and fecundity was 20% lower at the highest dose rate than in the control. The combination of decreased fecundity and unchanged individual offspring mass resulted in a smaller total mass of eggs produced per daphnid at 4.2 and 31 mGy h-1 than in the control. A decreased resistance of neonates to starvation was observed at every dose rate. Possible mechanisms of gamma radiotoxicity for daphnid reproduction and implications for radioprotection are discussed.

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