Lead accumulation in Pomphorhynchus laevis and its host.
Adults of Pomphorhynchus laevis were collected from the intestines of 10 chubs (Leuciscus cephalus) from the river Ruhr near Bochum, Germany. The acanthocephalans and various tissues of the fish (muscle, liver, and intestine) were analyzed for lead with electrothermal atomic absorption spectrometry. The mean lead level in the parasite was 54 micrograms/g wet weight, which was 284 times more than in the host intestine, 771 times more than in host liver, and 2,700 times more than in host muscle. Thus, P. laevis may serve as a very sensitive bioindicator for the presence of biologically available lead in aquatic ecosystems.
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