Safety Assessment of Bacillus thuringiensis Insecticidal Proteins Cry1C and Cry2A with a Zebrafish Embryotoxicity Test

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Abstract or Summary

As a result of the large-scale planting of transgenic Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) crops, fish would be exposed to freely soluble Bt insecticidal protein(s) that are released from Bt crop tissues into adjacent bodies of water or by way of direct feeding on deposited plant material. To assess the safety of two Bt proteins Cry1C and Cry2A to fish, we used zebrafish as a representative species and exposed their embryos to 0.1, 1, and 10 mg/L of the two Cry proteins until 132 h post-fertilization and then several developmental, biochemical, and molecular parameters were evaluated. Chlorpyrifos (CPF), a known toxicant to aquatic organisms, was used as a positive control. Although CPF exposure resulted in significant developmental, biochemical, and molecular changes in the zebrafish embryos, there were almost no significant differences after Cry1C or Cry2A exposure. Thus, we conclude that zebrafish embryos are not sensitive to Cry1C and Cry2A insecticidal proteins at test concentrations.

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