The impact of several hydraulic fracking chemicals on Nile tilapia and evaluation of the protective effects of Spirulina platensis.


Department of Pathology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt. [Email]


Hydraulic fracturing (fracking) chemicals are used to maximize the extraction of hard-to-reach underground energy resources. Large amounts of fracking fluid could escape to the surrounding environments, including underground and surface water resources, during the chemical mixing stage of the hydraulic fracturing water cycle due to equipment failure or human error. However, the impact of pollution resulting from operational discharges is difficult to assess in aquatic ecosystems. In this study, pathological investigations, chromosomal aberrations, DNA damage, and biochemical and hematological parameters were used to evaluate the effects of such chemicals on Nile tilapia. Chromosomal aberrations are considered very sensitive genetic markers of exposure to genotoxic chemicals and are used as indicators of DNA damage. The appearance of different types of chromosomal aberrations (gaps and breaks) due to chemical exposure was significantly reduced by treatment with spirulina. Various deleterious findings in Nile tilapia, in the current study, could attributed to the presence of fracking chemicals in the aquatic environment. However, the presence of spirulina in the diet reduced the hazards of such chemicals. In addition, cytogenetic studies in the current work revealed the importance of spirulina in ameliorating the genotoxic effects of a mixture of some chemicals used in fracking.


Cytogenetic analysis,DNA fragmentation,Fish pathology,Hematology,Hydraulic fracturing,Spirulina,