Interspecific variability of endocrine disruption and oxidative stress in two bivalve species from the Ria Formosa Lagoon (south coast of Portugal)


  • Catarina Pereira CIMA, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve
  • Tânia Gomes CIMA, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve
  • Cátia Cardoso CIMA, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve
  • Ana Catarina Almeida CIMA, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve
  • Olinda Araújo CIMA, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve
  • Maria João Bebianno CIMA, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve
  • Alexandra Cravo CIMA, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve



Ria Formosa Lagoon, Mytilus galloprovincialis, Ruditapes decussatus, endocrine disruption, vitellogenin-like proteins, lipid peroxidation


Estuaries are highly productive ecosystems that have been increasingly affected by anthropogenic activities. In this study, the presence of endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs) and their relation to oxidative stress were assessed in two bivalve species (mussels Mytilus galloprovincialis and clams Ruditapes decussatus) from the Ria Formosa Lagoon (south Portugal). We applied the alkali-labile phosphate (ALP) assay to determine vitellogenin-like protein levels, and the lipid peroxidation (LPO) method to assess oxidative damage. Mussels and clams exhibited the same pattern of ALP concentrations, with no differences between genders and higher levels in winter. R. decussatus showed higher ALP values than M. galloprovincialis, possibly associated with a stronger responsiveness of clams to EDCs or due to the influence of the reproductive cycle. Mussels exhibited a more evident seasonal effect for LPO, indicating that these organisms are more influenced by seasonal fluctuations in the water column compared to the sediment-associated clams. Both species appear to be under the influence of EDC exposure (which could induce Vg-like protein synthesis) and oxidative stressors (leading to lipid peroxidation) in the Ria Formosa Lagoon, particularly in winter, reflecting the presence of different contaminants in Ria Formosa and environmental changes, as well as complex interactions between them.


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How to Cite

Pereira C, Gomes T, Cardoso C, Almeida AC, Araújo O, Bebianno MJ, Cravo A. Interspecific variability of endocrine disruption and oxidative stress in two bivalve species from the Ria Formosa Lagoon (south coast of Portugal). scimar [Internet]. 2013Mar.30 [cited 2021Oct.21];77(S1):79-8. Available from:




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