This French study shows that a mixture of 4 pesticides (glyphosate, atrazine, aminomethyl phosphoric acid (AMPA), desethyl-atrazine (DEA)) exhibited the most potent cytogenetic toxicity, which was 20-fold higher than those of the most active compound AMPA, and 100-fold increased after light-irradiation.
Genotoxicity of mixtures of glyphosate and atrazine and their environmental transformation products before and after photoactivation
A. Roustan, M. Aye, M. De Meo, C. Di Giorgio
The photo-inducible cytogenetic toxicity of glyphosate, atrazine, aminomethyl phosphoric acid (AMPA), desethyl-atrazine (DEA), and their various mixtures was assessed by the in vitro micronucleus assay on CHO-K1 cells.
Results demonstrated that the cytogenetic potentials of pesticides greatly depended on their physico-chemical environment. The mixture made with the four pesticides exhibited the most potent cytogenetic toxicity, which was 20-fold higher than those of the most active compound AMPA, and 100-fold increased after light-irradiation. Intracellular ROS assessment suggested the involvement of oxidative stress in the genotoxic impact of pesticides and pesticide mixtures.
This study established that enhanced cytogenetic activities could be observed in pesticide mixtures containing glyphosate, atrazine, and their degradation products AMPA and DEA. It highlighted the importance of cocktail effects in environmental matrices, and pointed out the limits of usual testing strategies based on individual molecules, to efficiently estimate environmental risks.