Kinetic analysis of uranium accumulation in the bivalve Corbicula fluminea: Effect of pH and direct exposure levels
Simon, O., Garnier-Laplace, J.
Volume 68, Issue 2, 10 June 2004, Pages 95-108
The bioaccumulation of natural uranium in the freshwater bivalve Corbicula fluminea was investigated subsequent to the bivalve's experimental waterborne exposures. A first experiment determined the accumulation rate (transfer efficiency, tissular distribution) and subcellular distribution of uranium in organs after over 42 days of uranium exposure (100 μg l-1; pH 7) and later following 60 days of depuration. Results showed that there was direct transfer of uranium to the bivalve organs ([U]organism/[U] water = 0.16, fresh weight, fw). The highest accumulation levels occurred in the visceral mass and remained constant throughout the exposure duration, although a linear increase in the U concentration in the gills was observed (2.98±1.3-10.9±3.7 μg g-1 between Days 2 and 42). A second set of experiments were performed in order to test the influence of the exposure levels (100; 500; 1500 μg l-1) and pH (7 and 8.1) on the bioaccumulation capacities. A marked difference of U distribution is observed as a function of exposure levels (gills were favoured in the case of high exposure levels-relative burden: 49.1±3% (1500 μg l-1), whereas the visceral mass presented higher accumulation levels at environmentally relevant U concentrations). Uranium concentration in the insoluble fraction (80%) in the whole body does not depend upon exposure levels in the water column or upon duration. These experiments did not allow any link to be established between the free-metal ion concentration and the bioaccumulation efficiency. Results showed a significant pH effect and indicated a link between the exposure conditions and the distribution of uranium in the bivalve organs.