INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMME ON CHEMICAL SAFETY ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH CRITERIA 145 METHYL PARATHION This report contains the collective views of an international group of experts and does not necessarily represent the decisions or the stated policy of the United Nations Environment Programme, the International Labour Organisation, or the World Health Organization. Published under the joint sponsorship of the United Nations Environment Programme, the International Labour Organisation, and the World Health Organization First draft prepared by Dr R.F. Hertel and co-workers, Fraunhofer Institute of Toxicology and Aerosol Research, Hanover, Germany World Health Orgnization Geneva, 1993 The International Programme on Chemical Safety (IPCS) is a joint venture of the United Nations Environment Programme, the International Labour Organisation, and the World Health Organization. The main objective of the IPCS is to carry out and disseminate evaluations of the effects of chemicals on human health and the quality of the environment. Supporting activities include the development of epidemiological, experimental laboratory, and risk-assessment methods that could produce internationally comparable results, and the development of manpower in the field of toxicology. Other activities carried out by the IPCS include the development of know-how for coping with chemical accidents, coordination of laboratory testing and epidemiological studies, and promotion of research on the mechanisms of the biological action of chemicals. WHO Library Cataloguing in Publication Data Methyl parathion. (Environmental health criteria ; 145) 1.Environmental exposure 2.Methyl parathion - adverse effects 3.Methyl parathion - poisoning 4.Methyl parathion - toxicity I.Series ISBN 92 4 157145 4 (NLM Classification: WA 240) ISSN 0250-863X The World Health Organization welcomes requests for permission to reproduce or translate its publications, in part or in full. Applications and enquiries should be addressed to the Office of Publications, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland, which will be glad to provide the latest information on any changes made to the text, plans for new editions, and reprints and translations already available. (c) World Health Organization 1993 Publications of the World Health Organization enjoy copyright protection in accordance with the provisions of Protocol 2 of the Universal Copyright Convention. All rights reserved. The designations employed and the presentation of the material in this publication do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the World Health Organization concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. The mention of specific companies or of certain manufacturers' products does not imply that they are endorsed or recommended by the World Health Organization in preference to others of a similar nature that are not mentioned. Errors and omissions excepted, the names of proprietary products are distinguished by initial capital letters. CONTENTS ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH CRITERIA FOR METHYL PARATHION 1. SUMMARY AND EVALUATION, CONCLUSIONS, RECOMMENDATIONS 1.1. Summary and evaluation 1.1.1. Exposure 1.1.2. Uptake, metabolism, and excretion 1.1.3. Effects on organisms in the environment 1.1.4. Effects on experimental animals and in vitro test systems 1.1.5. Effects on human beings 1.2. Conclusions 1.3. Recommendations 2. IDENTITY, PHYSICAL AND CHEMICAL PROPERTIES, ANALYTICAL METHODS 2.1. Identity 2.1.1. Primary constituent 2.1.2. Technical product 220.127.116.11. Purity 2.2. Physical and chemical properties 2.3. Conversion factors 2.4. Analytical methods 2.4.1. Sampling, extraction, clean-up 18.104.22.168 Plant material (tobacco, fruits, vegetables, crops with low oil (fat) content) 22.214.171.124 Dairy products, products with a high fat content (edible fats) 126.96.36.199 Blood, body fluids 188.8.131.52 Soil, sediments 184.108.40.206 Water 220.127.116.11 Air 18.104.22.168 Formulations 2.4.2. Instrumental analytical methods 22.214.171.124 Gas chromatography 126.96.36.199 High performance liquid chroma- tography (HPLC) 188.8.131.52 Thin layer chroma- tography (TLC) 184.108.40.206 Spectrophotometry 220.127.116.11 Polarography 18.104.22.168 Mass spectrometry 2.4.3. Detection limits 2.4.4. Confirmatory method 3. SOURCES OF HUMAN AND ENVIRONMENTAL EXPOSURE 3.1. Natural occurrence 3.2. Man-made sources 3.2.1. Production process 3.2.2. Loss into the environment 3.2.3. Production 3.2.4. World consumption 3.2.5. Formulations 3.3. Uses 4. ENVIRONMENTAL TRANSPORTATION, DISTRIBUTION, AND TRANSFORMATION 4.1. Transportation and distribution between media 4.1.1. Air 4.1.2. Water 4.1.3. Soil 4.1.4. Vegetation and wildlife 4.1.5. Entry into the food-chain 4.2. Biotransformation 4.2.1. Degradation involving biota 4.2.2. Abiotic degradation 22.214.171.124 Photodegradation 126.96.36.199 Hydrolytic degradation 4.2.3. Bioaccumulation 4.3. Interaction with other physical, chemical, and biological factors 4.4. Ultimate fate following use 5. ENVIRONMENTAL LEVELS AND HUMAN EXPOSURE 5.1. Environmental levels 5.1.1. Air 5.1.2. Water 5.1.3. Soil 5.1.4. Food 5.1.5. Terrestrial and aquatic organisms 5.2. General population exposure 5.3. Occupational exposure during manufacture, formulation, or use 6. KINETICS AND METABOLISM 6.1. Absorption 6.2. Distribution 6.3. Metabolic transformation 6.4. Elimination and excretion in expired air, faeces, or urine 6.5. Retention and turnover 7. EFFECTS ON ORGANISMS IN THE ENVIRONMENT 7.1. Microorganisms 7.1.1. Bacteria and fungi 7.1.2. Algae 7.2. Aquatic animals 7.2.1. Short-term toxicity in aquatic invertebrates 188.8.131.52 Laboratory studies on single species 184.108.40.206 Mesocosmic studies 7.2.2. Fish 220.127.116.11 Laboratory studies on single species 18.104.22.168 Mesocosmic studies 7.2.3. Amphibians 7.3. Terrestrial organisms 7.3.1. Plants 7.3.2. Invertebrates 7.3.3. Birds 7.3.4. Non-laboratory mammmals 8. EFFECTS ON EXPERIMENTAL ANIMALS AND IN VITRO TEST SYSTEMS 8.1. Single exposure 8.2. Skin and eye irritation, sensitization 8.3. Short-term exposures 8.4. Long-term exposures 8.5. Reproduction, embryotoxicity, and teratogenicity 8.6. Mutagenicity related end-points 8.7. Carcinogenicity 8.8. Special studies 8.9. Factors toxicity 8.10. Mode of action 8.10.1. Inhibition of esterases 8.10.2. Possible alkylation of biological macromolecules 8.10.3. General 9. EFFECTS ON MAN 9.1. General population exposure 9.1.1. Acute toxicity 9.1.2. Effects of short- and long-term exposure, controlled human studies 9.2. Occupational exposure 9.2.1. Epidemiological studies 10. PREVIOUS EVALUATIONS BY INTERNATIONAL BODIES REFERENCES ANNEX I RESUME RESUMEN WHO TASK GROUP ON ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH CRITERIA FOR METHYL PARATHION Members Dr L.A. Albert, Consultores Ambientales Asociados, S.C., Xalapa, Veracruz, Mexico (Vice-Chairman) Dr S. Dobson, Ecotoxicology and Pollution Section, Institute of Terrestrial Ecology, Monks Wood Experimental Station, Abbots Ripton, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom Dr D.J. Ecobichon, Pharmacology and Therapeutics, McGill University, Montreal, Canada (Chairman) Dr R.F. Hertel, Fraunhofer Institute of Toxicology & Aerosol Research, Hanover, Germany (Co-rapporteur) Dr S.K. Kashyap, National Institute of Occupational Health, Meghaninagar, Ahmedabad, India Dr I. Nordgren, Department of Toxicology, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden Dr K.C. Swentzel, Toxicology Branch II, Health Effects Division, US Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, USA (Co-rapporteur) Dr M. Tasheva, Department of Toxicology, Institute of Hygiene and Occupational Health, Medical Academy, Sofia, Bulgaria Dr L. Varnagy, Department of Agrochemical Hygiene, University of Agricultural Sciences, Institute for Plant Protection, Keszthely, Hungary Observers Dr W. Flucke, Bayer AG, Fachbereich Toxikologie, Institut für Toxikologie Landwirtschaft, Wuppertal, Germany Secretariat Dr K.W. Jager, International Programme on Chemical Safety, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland (Secretary) Dr E. Matos, Unit of Carcinogen Identification and Evaluation, International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), Lyon, France NOTE TO READERS OF THE CRITERIA MONOGRAPHS Every effort has been made to present information in the criteria monographs as accurately as possible without unduly delaying their publication. In the interest of all users of the environmental health criteria monographs, readers are kindly requested to communicate any errors that may have occurred to the Director of the International Programme on Chemical Safety, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland, in order that they may be included in corrigenda. * * * A detailed data profile and a legal file can be obtained from the International Register of Potentially Toxic Chemicals, Palais des Nations, 1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland (Telephone No. 7988400 - 7985850). NOTE: The proprietary information contained in this monograph cannot replace documentation for registration purposes, because the latter has to be closely linked to the source, the manufacturing route, and the purity/impurities of the substance to be registered. The data should be used in accordance with paragraphs 82-84 and recommendations paragraph 90 of the Second FAO Government Consultation (1982). ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH CRITERIA FOR METHYL PARATHION A WHO Task Group on Environmental Health Criteria for Methyl Parathion met at the World Health Organization, Geneva from 19 to 23 August 1991. Dr K.W. Jager, IPCS, welcomed the participants on behalf of Dr M. Mercier, Director of the IPCS, and the three IPCS cooperating organizations (UNEP/ILO/WHO). The Group reviewed and revised the draft and made an evaluation of the risks for human health and the environment from exposure to methyl parathion. The first draft of the EHC on methyl parathion was prepared by Dr R.F. Hertel and his co-workers of the Fraunhofer Institute of Toxicology and Aerosol Research in Hanover, Germany. The same group assisted in the preparation of the second draft, incorporating comments received following circulation of the first drafts to the IPCS contact points for Environmental Health Criteria monographs. Dr K.W. Jager of the IPCS Central Unit was responsible for the scientific content of the monograph, and Mrs M.O. Head of Oxford for the editing. The efforts of all who helped in the preparation and finalization of the monograph are gratefully acknowledged. 1. SUMMARY AND EVALUATION, CONCLUSIONS, RECOMMENDATIONS 1.1 Summary and evaluation 1.1.1 Exposure Methyl parathion is an organophosphorus insecticide that was first synthesized in the 1940s. It is relatively insoluble in water, poorly soluble in petroleum ether and mineral oils, and readily soluble in most organic solvents. Pure methyl parathion consists of white crystals; technical methyl parathion is a light tan colour with a garlic-like odour. It is thermally unstable and undergoes fast decomposition above pH 8. Gas chromatography, with either alkali flame ionization (AFID) or flame photometric (FPD) detectors, is the most common method for the determination of methyl parathion. Detection limits range from 0.01 to 0.1 µg/litre in water, and from 0.1 to 1 ng/m3 in air. HPLC and TLC are also useful methods of detection. The distribution of methyl parathion in air, water, soil, and organisms in the environment is influenced by several physical, chemical, and biological factors. Studies using model ecosystems and mathematical modelling indicate that methyl parathion partitions mainly into the air and soil in the environment with lesser amounts going to plants and animals. There is virtually no movement through soil and neither the parent compound nor its breakdown products will normally reach ground water. Methyl parathion in air mainly arises from the spraying of the compound, though some volatilization occurs with the evaporation of water from leaves and the soil surface. Background atmospheric levels of methyl parathion in agricultural areas range from not detectable to about 70 ng/m3. Air concentrations after spraying have been shown to decline rapidly over 3 days reaching background levels after about 9 days. Levels in river water (in laboratory studies) declined to 80% of the initial concentration after 1 h and 10% after 1 week. Methyl parathion is retained longer in soil than in air or water, though retention is greatly influenced by soil type; sandy soil can lose residues of the compound more rapidly than loams. Residues on plant surfaces and within leaves decline rapidly with half lives of the order of a few hours; complete loss of methyl parathion occurs within about 6-7 days. Animals can degrade methyl parathion and eliminate the degradation products within a very short time. This is slower in lower vertebrates and invertebrates than in mammals and birds. Bioconcentration factors are low and the accumulated methyl parathion levels transitory. By far the most important route for the environmental degradation of methyl parathion is microbial degradation. Loss of the compound in the field and in model ecosystems is more rapid than that predicted from laboratory studies. This is because of the variety of microorganisms capable of degrading the compound in different habitats and circumstances. The presence of sediment or plant surfaces, which increases the microbial populations, increases the rate of breakdown of methyl parathion. Methyl parathion can undergo oxidative degradation, to the less stable methyl paraoxon, by ultraviolet radiation (UVR) or sunlight; sprayed films degrade under UVR with a half-life of about 40 h. However, the contribution of photolysis to total loss in an aquatic system has been estimated to be only 4%. Hydrolysis of methyl parathion also occurs and is more rapid under alkaline conditions. High salinity also favours hydrolysis of the compound. Half-lives of a few minutes were recorded in strongly reducing sediments, though methyl parathion is more stable when sorbed on other sediments. In towns in the centre of agricultural areas of the USA, methyl parathion concentrations in air varied with season and peaked in August or September; maximum levels in surveys were mainly in the range of 100-800 ng/m3 during the growing season. Concentrations in natural waters of agricultural areas in the USA ranged up to 0.46 µg/litre, with highest levels in summer. There are only small numbers of published reports on residues of methyl parathion in food throughout the world. In the USA, residues of methyl parathion in food have generally been reported at very low levels with few individual samples exceeding maximum residue limits (MRLs). Only trace residue levels of methyl parathion were detected in the total dietary studies reported. Methyl parathion residues were highest in leafy (up to 2 mg/kg) and root (up to 1 mg/kg) vegetables in market basket surveys in the USA between 1966 and 1969. Food preparation, cooking, and storage all cause decomposition of methyl parathion residues further reducing exposure of humans. Raw vegetables and fruits may contain higher residues after misuse. The production, formulation, handling, and use of methyl parathion as an insecticide are the principal potential sources of exposure of humans. Skin contact and, to a lesser degree, inhalation are the main routes of exposure of workers. In a study on farm spray-men (with unprotected workers using ultra-low-volume (ULV) handsprays) an intake of 0.4-13 mg of methyl parathion per 24 h was calculated from the excreted p-nitrophenol in the urine. Early re-entry into treated crops is a further source of exposure. The general population may be exposed to air-, water-, and food-borne residues of methyl parathion as a consequence of agricultural or forestry practices, the misuse of the agent resulting in the contamination of fields, crops, water, and air through off-target spraying. 1.1.2 Uptake, metabolism, and excretion Methyl parathion is readily absorbed via all routes of exposure (oral, dermal, inhalation) and is rapidly distributed to the tissues of the body. Maximum concentrations in various organs were detected 1-2 h after treatment. Conversion of methyl parathion to methyl paraoxon occurs within minutes of administration. A mean terminal half-life of 7.2 h was determined in dogs following intravenous (i.v.) administration of methyl parathion. The liver is the primary organ of metabolism and detoxification. Methyl parathion or methyl paraoxon are mainly detoxified in the liver through oxidation, hydrolysis, and demethylation or dearylation with reduced glutathione (GSH). The reaction products are O-methyl O-p-nitrophenyl phosphorothioate or dimethyl phosphorothioic or dimethylphosphoric acids and p-nitrophenol. Therefore, it is possible to estimate exposure by measuring the urinary excretion of p-nitrophenol; urinary excretion of p-nitrophenol by human volunteers was 60% within 4 h and approximately 100% within 24 h. The metabolism of methyl parathion is important for species selective toxicity, and the development of resistance. The elimination of methyl parathion and metabolic products occurs primarily via the urine. Studies conducted on mice with radiolabelled (32P-methyl parathion) revealed 75% of radioactivity in the urine and up to 10% radioactivity in the faeces after 72 h. 1.1.3 Effects on organisms in the environment Microorganisms can use methyl parathion as a carbon source and studies on a natural community showed that concentrations of up to 5 mg/litre increased biomass and reproductive activity. Bacteria and actinomycetes showed a positive effect of methyl parathion while fungi and yeasts were less able to utilize the compound. A 50% inhibition of growth of a diatom occurred at about 5 mg/litre. Cell growth of unicellular green algae was reduced by between 25 and 80 µg methyl parathion/litre. Populations of algae became tolerant after exposure for several weeks. Methyl parathion is highly toxic for aquatic invertebrates with most LC50s ranging from < 1 µg to about 40 µg/litre. A few arthropod species are less susceptible. The no-effect level for the water flea (Daphnia magna) is 1.2 µg/litre. Molluscs are much less susceptible with LC50s ranging between 12 and 25 mg/litre. Most fish species in both fresh and sea water have LC50s of between 6 and 25 mg/litre with a few species substantially more or less sensitive to methyl parathion. The acute toxicity for amphibians is similar to that for fish. Population effects have been seen on communities of aquatic invertebrates in experimental ponds treated with methyl parathion. The concentrations needed to cause these effects would occur only with overspraying of water bodies and, even then, would last for only a short time. Population effects are, therefore, unlikely to be seen in the field. Kills of aquatic invertebrates would be unlikely to lead to lasting effects. Care should be taken to avoid overspraying of ponds, rivers, and lakes, when using methyl parathion. The compound should never be sprayed under windy conditions. Methyl parathion is a non-selective insecticide that kills beneficial species as readily as pests. Kills of bees have been reported following spraying of methyl parathion. Incidents concerning bees were more severe with methyl parathion than with other insecticides. Africanized honey bees are more tolerant of methyl parathion than European strains. Methyl parathion was moderately toxic for birds in laboratory studies, with acute oral LD50s ranging between 3 and 8 mg/kg body weight. Dietary LC50s ranged from 70 to 680 mg/kg diet. There is no indication that birds would be adversely affected from recommended usage in the field. Extreme care must be taken to time methyl parathion spraying to avoid adverse effects on honey bees. 1.1.4 Effects on experimental animals and in vitro test systems Oral LD50 values of methyl parathion in rodents range from 3 to 35 mg/kg body weight, and dermal LD50 values, from 44 to 67 mg/kg body weight. Methyl parathion poisoning causes the usual organophosphate cholinergic signs attributed to accumulation of acetylcholine at nerve endings. Methyl parathion becomes toxic when it is metabolized to methyl paraoxon. This conversion is very rapid. No indications of organophosphorous-induced, delayed neuropathy (OPIDN) have been observed. Technical methyl parathion was found not to have any primary eye or skin irritating potential. In short-term toxicity studies, using various routes of administration on the rat, dog, and rabbit, inhibition of plasma, red blood cell, and brain ChE, and related cholinergic signs were observed. In a 12-week feeding study on dogs, the no-observed- adverse-effect level (NOAEL) was 5 mg/kg diet (equivalent to 0.1 mg/kg body weight per day). In a 3-week dermal toxicity study on rabbits, the no-observed-effect-level (NOEL) was 10 mg/kg body weight daily. Inhalation exposure for 3 weeks indicated a NOEL of 0.9 mg/m3 air. At 2.6 mg/m3, only slight inhibition of plasma ChE was observed. Long-term toxicity/carcinogenicity studies were carried out on mice and rats. The NOEL for rats was 0.1 mg/kg body weight per day, based on ChE inhibition. There is no evidence of carcino genicity in mice and rats, following long-term exposure. In another 2-year study on rats, however, there was evidence of a peripheral neurotoxic effect at a dose of 50 mg/kg diet. Methyl parathion has been reported to have DNA-alkylating properties in vitro. The results of most of the in vitro genotoxicity studies on both bacterial and mammalian cells were positive, while 6 in vivo studies using 3 different test systems produced equivocal results. In reproduction studies, at toxic dose levels (ChE inhibition), there were no consistent effects on litter size, number of litters, pup survival rates, and lactation performance. No primary teratogenic or embryotoxic effects were noted. 1.1.5 Effects on human beings Several cases of acute methyl parathion poisoning have been reported. Signs and symptoms are those characteristic of systemic poisoning by cholinesterase-inhibiting organophosphorous compounds. They include peripheral and central cholinergic nervous system manifestations appearing as rapidly as a few minutes after exposure. In case of dermal exposure, symptoms may increase in severity for more than one day and may last several days. Studies on volunteers, following repeated, long-term exposures, suggest that there is a decrease in blood cholinesterase activities without clinical manifestations. No cases of organophosphorous-induced, delayed peripheral neuropathy (OPIDN) have been reported. Neuro-psychiatric sequelae have been reported in cases of multiple exposure to pesticides including methyl parathion. An increase in chromosomal aberrations has been reported in cases of acute intoxications. No human data were available to evaluate the teratogenic and reproductive effects of methyl parathion. The available epidemiological studies deal with multiple exposure to pesticides and it is not possible to evaluate the effects of long-term exposure to methyl parathion. 1.2 Conclusions Methyl parathion is a highly toxic organophosphorus ester insecticide. Overexposure from handling during manufacture, use, and/or accidental or intentional ingestion may cause severe or fatal poisoning. Methyl parathion formulations may, or may not, be irritating to the eyes or to the skin, but are readily absorbed. As a consequence, hazardous exposures may occur without warning. Methyl parathion is not persistent in the environment. It is not bioconcentrated and is not transferred through food-chains. It is degraded rapidly by many microorganisms and other forms of wild life. This insecticide is likely to cause damage to ecosystems only in instances of heavy over-exposure resulting from misuse or accidental spills; however, pollinators and other beneficial insects are at risk from spraying with methyl parathion. Exposure of the general population to methyl parathion residues occurs predominantly via food. If good agricultural practices are followed, the Acceptable Daily Intake (0-0.02 mg/kg body weight), established by FAO/WHO, will not be exceeded. Dermal exposure may also occur through accidental contact with foliar residues in sprayed fields or in areas adjacent to spraying operations as a consequence of off-target loss of the chemical. With good work practices, hygienic measures, and safety precautions, methyl parathion is unlikely to present a hazard for those occupationally exposed. 1.3 Recommendations * For the health and welfare of workers and the general population, the handling and application of methyl parathion should be entrusted only to competently supervised and well-trained applicators, who must follow adequate safety measures and use the chemical according to good application practices. * The manufacture, formulation, agricultural use, and disposal of methyl parathion should be carefully managed to minimize contamination of the environment. * Regularly exposed workers should receive appropriate monitoring and health evaluation. * To minimize risks for all individuals, a 48-h interval between the spraying and re-entry into any sprayed area is recommended. * Pre-harvest intervals should be established and enforced by national authorities. * In view of the high toxicity of methyl parathion, this agent should not be considered for use in hand-applied, ULV spraying practices. * Do not overspray water bodies. Choose spraying times to avoid killing pollinating insects. * Information on the health status of workers exposed only to methyl parathion (i.e., in manufacture, formulation) should be published, in order to better evaluate the risks of this chemical for human health. * More definitive studies should be conducted on residues of methyl parathion in fresh foods. * A more definitive genotoxic assessment of methyl parathion should be conducted. 2. IDENTITY, PHYSICAL AND CHEMICAL PROPERTIES, ANALYTICAL METHODS 2.1 Identity 2.1.1 Primary constituent Molecular formula: C8H10NO5PS Relative molecular mass: 263.23 Common names: methyl parathion accepted by ESA (Entomological Society of America) JMAF (Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food) WHO (World Health Organization) parathion-methyl accepted by BSI (British Standards Institution) ISO (International Organization for Standardization) metaphos accepted by the USSR CAS chemical name: O,O-dimethyl O-(4-nitro-phenyl) phosphorothioate IUPAC systematic name: O,O-Dimethyl O-4-nitrophenylphos- phorothioate CAS registry number: 298-00-0 RTECS number: TG 0175000 EINECS number: 206-050-1 EEC number: 015-035-00-7 Common synonyms: Demethylfenitrothion; dimethyl para-nitrophenyl monothiophosphate; O,O-dimethyl O-( para-nitrophenyl) phosphorothioate; dimethyl para-nitrophenyl phosphorothionate; dimethyl 4-nitrophenyl phosphorothionate; O,O-dimethyl O-(para-nitrophenyl) thionophosphate; dimethyl para-nitrophenyl thiophosphate; O,O-dimethyl- O-(para-nitrophenyl) thiophosphate; dimethyl parathion; ENT 17292; metaphos; methyl-parathion; methylthiophos; MPT; NCI CO2971; parathion methyl homolog; phosphorothioic acid O,O-dimethyl O-(4-nitro-phenyl) ester; phosphorothioic acid O,O-dimethyl O-(para-nitrophenyl) ester BAY 11405; 8056 HC; E601 2.1.2 Technical product Major trade names: A-Gro; Azofos; Azophos; Bladan M; Cekumethion; Dalf; Divithion; Drexel Methyl Parathion 4E & 601; Dygun; Dypar; Ekatox; Folidol M, M40 & 80; Fosferno M50; Gearphos; Mepaton; Meptox; Metacid 50; Metacide; Metafos; Metaphos; Methyl-E 605; Methyl Fosferno; Methylthiophos; Metron; M-Parathion; Niletar; Niran M-4; Nitran; Nitrox; Nitrox 80; Oleovofotox; Parapest M-50; Parataf; Paratox; Paridol; Parton M; Penncap M & MLS; Sinafid M-48; Sixty-Three Special E.C. Insecticide; Tekwaisa; Thiophenit; Thylpar M-50; Toll; Unidol; Vertac Methyl Parathion; technical product 80%, Wofatox; Wolfatox. 22.214.171.124. Purity Technical methyl parathion is available as a solution containing 80% active ingredient (a.i.), 16.7% xylene, and 3.3% inert ingredients. The following impurities were identified in one sample of technical-grade methyl parathion: O,O-dimethyl- S-methyl dithiophosphate, nitroanisol, nitro-phenol, isomers of methyl parathion, and the dithio-analogue of methyl parathion (Warner, 1975). 2.2 Physical and chemical properties Physical state: pure: white crystalline solid or powder (National Fire Protection Association, 1986) technical (80%) pure: light to dark tan liquid (Worthing & Walker, 1987) Melting point: 37-38 °C (The Merck Index, 1983) 35-36 °C (Worthing, 1983) Freezing point: about 29 °C (technical product) (Worthing & Walker, 1987) Density/specific gravity: 1.358 at 20 °C/40 °C (d204 1.358) (The Merck Index, 1983) Vapour pressure: 1.3 mPa at 20 °C (Worthing & Walker, 1987) Octanol/water partition coefficient: log Kow = 2.68 (measured) log Kow = 1.81-3.43 (reported range) (Hansch & Leo, 1987) Water solubility: 55-60 mg/litre at 25 °C (pure) (Midwest Research Institute, 1975; National Research Council, 1977) 37.7 mg/litre at 19 °C (pure) (Bowman & Sans, 1979) 57 mg/litre at 22 °C (anal. grade) (Sanders & Seiber, 1983) Nonaqueous solubility: soluble in ethanol, chloroform, aliphatic solvents, and slightly soluble in light petroleum Volatility (pure): 0.14 mg/m3 at 20 °C (Spencer, 1982) Odour: like rotten eggs or garlic (technical grade) (Midwest Research Institute, 1975; Anon., 1984) Odour threshold: 0.0125 mg/m3 (Akhmedov, 1968) Other properties: hydrolyses and isomerizes easily (White-Stevens, 1971) Half-life in aqueous solution at 20 °C, pH 1-5: 175 days (Melnikov, 1971) 2.3 Conversion factors 1 ppm methyl parathion= 10.76 mg/m3 at 25 °C, 1066 mbar 1 mg methyl parathion/m3 = 0.0929 ppm 2.4 Analytical methods 2.4.1 Sampling, extraction, clean-up Standardized methods for the determination of various residues are reported in the Manual of pesticide residue analysis (Thier & Zeumer, 1987). 126.96.36.199 Plant material (tobacco, fruits, vegetables, crops with low oil (fat) content) (a) Extraction Three extraction methods have mainly been used, all of which are suitable for multiresidue analysis. (1) Soxhlet extraction with chloroform - 10% methanol has been proposed for field-weathered crops by Bowman (1981). (2) Acetonitrile combined with various amounts of water has been used by Mills et al. (1963), Wessel (1967), Osadchuk et al. (1971), Luke et al. (1975), and Stahr et al. (1979). The plant material is homogenized in a blender with acetonitrile, in some instances after the addition of Celite (Nelson, 1967; Funch, 1981;). High-moisture products (fruits and vegetables) are extracted with pure acetonitrile while samples of dry products (hays, grains, feedstuff) are blended with acetonitrile-water (65:35). Extraction is followed by solvent partitioning into petroleum ether with the addition of sodium chloride (Mills et al., 1963; Wessel, 1967; Nelson, 1967) into dichloromethane (Funch, 1981), and dichloromethane/hexane (10:200) (Osadchuk et al., 1971). (3) Acetone was preferred as the solvent in particular in multiresidue analysis by Becker (1971), Pflugmacher & Ebing (1974), Sagredos & Eckert (1976), Becker (1979), Specht & Tillkes (1980), Miellet (1982), Sonobe et al. (1982), Luke & Doose (1983), Luke & Doose (1984), Ebing (1985), Andersson & Ohlin (1986), Vogelsang & Thier (1986), Gyorfi et al. (1987), Thier & Zeumer (1987), and Becker & Schug, (1990). In some instances, celite was added. Depending on the water content of the sample, water was added. In a second step, the acetone extracts were further extracted with either dichloromethane, dichloro methane/petroleum ether, or dichloromethane/ n-hexane. The extract was dried over anhydrous sodium sulfate, reduced in volume in a Kuderna-Danish concentrator, and subjected to further clean-up. Extraction with acetone- o-xylene (19:1) (Ross & Harvey, 1981), toluene/hexane (75:25) (Johansson, 1978), chloroform (Ault et al., 1979), or supercritical fluid extraction using methanol (Capriel et al., 1986), has also been reported. (b) Column clean-up The published clean-up procedures are usually suitable for multiresidue analysis. For plant material with a low fat content, 3 column clean-up procedures have been developed. (1) The oldest method involves the use of chromatography on Florisil (often topped with anhydrous sodium sulfate) (Mills et al., 1963; Nelson, 1967; Schnorbus & Phillips, 1967; Wessel, 1967; Beckman & Garber, 1969; Osadchuk et al., 1971; Luke et al., 1975; Johansson, 1978; Gretch & Rosen, 1984, 1987). Although it has been claimed that organo phosphorous pesticides are partially lost during Florisil clean-up (Luke et al., 1975), high recoveries (usually > 80 %) have been reported for methyl parathion. Various solvents and solvent mixtures are used for chromatography on Florisil including: diethylether/petroleum ether, ethyl ether/hexane, and acetone/toluene, diethylether/petroleum ether being the most frequently used. Fractionation is achieved by increasing successively the diethylether content. Florisil clean-up is usually used for a combined clean-up of organochlorine and organophosphorous pesticides. Luke et al. (1975) reported that gas chromatography (GC) with a thermionic detector was sufficiently selective to detect organophosphorous pesticides without Florisil clean-up. (2) Alternatively, clean-up of pesticides in multiresidue analysis has been achieved by chromatography on charcoal (Becker, 1971, 1979; Miellet, 1982; Sonobe et al., 1982; Luke & Doose, 1984; Ebing, 1985; Gyorfi et al., 1987). To this end, charcoal is mixed with silica gel (1:15) (and sometimes also celite or magnesia). In most instances, elution is achieved with mixtures of dichloromethane/acetone/toluene (e.g., 5:1:1) (Ebing, 1985; Thier & Zeumer, 1987). Recoveries are high (often > 90 %). Charcoal clean-up is particularly suited for dry products (< 10 % water). The simultaneous clean-up of organochlorine and organo- phosphorous pesticides is also possible with chromatography on charcoal. (3) In recent years, a clean-up of pesticides in multiresidue analysis by gel permeation chromatography (GPC) has become popular (Pflugmacher & Ebing, 1974; Ault et al., 1979; Specht & Tillkes, 1980; Andersson & Ohlin, 1986; Vogelgesang & Thier, 1986; Steinwandter, 1988). The stationary phase consists, in most instances, of Bio Beads SX3 (a polystyrene gel). Ethyl acetate/cyclohexane (1:1), dichloromethane/cyclohexane (1:1) and, more recently, acetone/cyclohexane (3:1) have been used as elution mixtures. Gel permeation chromatography is mainly used to protect the GC column and the GC detector against contam- ination. GPC removes material of higher relative molecular mass. Recoveries > 85% have been reported. Frequently, GPC is combined with the additional purification step of silica gel chromatography (Specht & Tillkes, 1980; Andersson & Ohlin, 1986; Vogelsaifng & Thier, 1986) where elution is achieved with toluene/hexane (35:65), followed by toluene and acetone/toluene, with increasing acetone content. However, while the additional clean-up by silica gel column chromatography is important when organo chlorine pesticides are present, it is not necessary for organophosphorous pesticides if analysis is performed by gas chromatography with flame photometric detection. 188.8.131.52 Dairy products, products with a high fat content (edible fats) Clean-up techniques for products with a high fat content have been reviewed by Waters (1990). Florisil column chromatography and gel permeation chromatography are also suited for a clean-up of samples with a high fat content. In addition, clean-up using normal phase HPLC has been reported (Gillespie & Waters, 1986). Fat is dissolved in n-hexane and fractionated on silica gel HPLC using dichloromethane/hexane as solvent. However, complete separation ofmethyl parathion from the fat is not achieved. As an alternative, fat is adsorbed on aluminum oxide (Luke & Doose, 1984) or on Calflo E (calcium silicate) (Specht, 1978; Thier & Zeumer, 1987). Finally, a sweep codistillation clean-up of edible oils has been reported by Storherr et al. (1967) and Watts & Storherr (1967). This method has been standardized also for plant material (Thier & Zeumer, 1987). After extraction of the sample with ethyl acetate, the concentrated extract is injected into a heated glass column packed with glass wool or glass beads followed by the injection of ethyl acetate or petroleum ether in a nitrogen stream. The nitrogen carrier gas sweeps the volatile component through the tube to a condensing bath and through an Arnakrom scrubber tube to a collection tube. Sweep codistillation may be followed by a further Florisil clean-up. The extraction and clean-up of vegetable oil can be speeded up by performing extraction and clean-up in one step using a system of three ready-to-use cartridges in series (Extralut-3, Sep-Pack silicade1 and Sep-Pack C18) where the assembled columns are eluted with acetonitril (saturated with n-hexane) (Di Muccio et al., 1990). 184.108.40.206 Blood, body fluids Methyl parathion is extracted from blood with hexane or benzene and analysed without further clean-up (Gabica et al., 1971; De Potter et al., 1978). No extraction is necessary if methyl parathion is determined by polarography (Zietek, 1976). Measurement of the urinary metabolites and the cholinesterase activity were used to supervise the exposure of workers coming into contact with methyl parathion or parathion and to observe their elimination in cases of poisoning (see section 5.3) (Elliot et al., 1960; Arterberry et al., 1961; Shafic & Enos, 1969; Wolfe et al., 1970; Ware et al., 1974b; NIOSH, 1976). 220.127.116.11 Soil, sediments Methyl parathion is extracted from soil with acetone, acetone/ n-hexane or hexane/isopropanol (Schutzmann et al., 1971; Agishev et al., 1977; Garrido & Monteoliva, 1981; Wegman et al., 1984; Kjoelholt, 1985). It is partitioned in a second step into dichloromethane. While several authors determine the pesticides without further clean-up, additional silica gel adsorption chromatography has been used by Wegman et al., (1984) and Kjoelholt (1985). The recovery of methyl parathion is 70-85%. When sediments are analysed, elemental sulfur represents a particular problem. Kjoelholt et al. separated the sulfur by tetra butylammonium hydrogensulfate (Kjoelholt, 1985), while Schutzmann et al. (1971) refluxed the sediment extract with Raney copper. For the extraction, the sediment mixed with sand and sodium sulfate can be placed into a column and eluted using acetone : dichloromethane (1:1) (Belisle & Swineford, 1988). 18.104.22.168 Water Extraction and concentration of methyl parathion from water is achieved either by liquid/liquid extraction (Kawahara et al., 1967; Pionke et al., 1968; Mestres et al., 1969; Konrad et al., 1969; Zweig & Devine, 1969; Schutzmann et al., 1971; Coburn & Chau, 1974; Chmil et al., 1978; Chernyak & Oradovskii, 1980; Miller et al., 1981; Spingarn et al., 1982; Bruchet et al., 1984; Albanis et al., 1986; Li & Wang, 1987; Brodesser & Schoeler, 1987), or by adsorption on polymeric material (Paschal et al., 1977; Le Bel et al., 1979; Agostiano et al., 1983; Xue, 1984; Clark et al., 1985). Various solvents have been used for solvent extractions including: diethyl ether/hexane (1:1), benzene, petroleum ether, hexane/isopropanol; chloroform, dichloromethane, and ethyl acetate. Recoveries have been high (in most instances > 90 %). If the liquid/liquid extraction is scaled up using a "Goulden large sample extractor" and 120 litre of water, detection limits may be lower by a factor of about 150 compared with 1-litre samples (i.e., a detection limit of 2.5 ng/litre (ppt) has been achieved for methyl parathion) (Foster & Rogerson, 1990). The extraction efficiency can be further improved by continuous liquid-liquid extraction, which allows the use of non-polar solvents as n-pentane (Bruchet et al., 1984; Brodesser & Schoeler, 1987). Water samples are frequently analysed for pesticides without further clean-up, while Florisil clean-up has been used in some instances (Mestres et al., 1969; Miller et al., 1981). High concentration factors are achieved, if methyl parathion (and other pesticides) are adsorbed on polymeric material, such as XAD-2 (Paschal et al., 1977; Le Bel et al., 1979), XAD-4 (Xue et al., 1984), Tenax (Agostiano et al., 1983) or Porapack Q (Clark et al., 1985). Elution from XAD is achieved with diethyl ether, acetone/hexane (15:85), diethyl ether-hexane (85:15). Recoveries are >90 %. If Tenax is used, both solvent elution (diethyl ether) or thermoelution can be used to desorb the pesticides. Solid-phase extraction (using C-18 cartridges) will become the method of choice for the rapid extraction of organophosphorous insecticides from water (Swineford & Belisle, 1989; Sherma & Bretschneider, 1990). 22.214.171.124 Air Most methods for the determination of pesticides in air have been developed as multiresidue methods. Pesticides in air are either absorbed in liquids or adsorbed on polymeric material. Thus, pesticides may be trapped in ethylene glycol, which is subsequently extracted with dichloromethane (Tessari & Spencer, 1971; Sherma & Shafik, 1975) or they may be trapped on glass beads coated with cottonseed oil (Compton, 1973). Further clean-up is achieved by silica gel or Florisil column chromatography. Among the solid polymeric material used to trap pesticides, polyurethane foam (PUF) is by far the most popular (Lewis et al., 1977; Rice et al., 1977; Lewis & McLeod, 1982; Lewis & Jackson, 1982; Belashova et al., 1983; Beine, 1987). Air can be collected both with low-volume (approx. 4 litre/min) or high-volume samplers (up to 250 litre/min). PUF can be reused after careful cleaning (e.g., with 5% diethyl ether in n-hexane). In some instances, Tenax, Chromosorb 102, or Porapack R is sandwiched between PUF plugs to enhance the collection efficiency. Collection efficiencies in excess of 80% have been reported for methyl parathion. A filter may be added to remove particulate matter (Lewis et al., 1977). Methyl parathion is usually determined without further clean-up. Finally, XAD-4 (Wehner et al., 1984) and silica gel (Klisenko & Girenko, 1980; Liang & Zhang, 1986) have been used as solid trapping materials. 126.96.36.199 Formulations When analysing formulations, the determination of by-products and impurities is an important objective. A variety of instrumental techniques have been used for the analysis of formulations including: gas chromatography (Jackson, 1976; Jackson, 1977a), high performance liquid chromatography (Jackson, 1977b), infrared analysis (Goza, 1972), P-31-nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (Greenhalgh et al., 1983), and spectrophotometry after alkaline hydrolysis to p-nitrophenol (Blanco & Sanchez, 1989). An inter laboratory study has been carried out using both GC (Jackson, 1977a) and HPLC (Jackson, 1977b). With both methods, coefficients of variation of 1.7% have been determined. The instrumental techniques are described below. 2.4.2 Instrumental analytical methods 188.8.131.52 Gas chromatography Gas chromatrophic (GC) methods for the determination of pesticides (including methyl parathion) have been reviewed by Ebing (1987). Organophosphorous pesticides, including methyl parathion, are sufficiently volatile and thermally stable to be amenable to gas chromatography and it is by far the most important method for the determination of methyl parathion. This technique provides the good resolution necessary for multiresidue analysis. Moreover, very sensitive and specific detectors are available, in particular for the analysis of organophosphorous pesticides. (a) Detectors The two most widely used detectors for organophosphorous pesticides are the alkali flame ionization detector (AFID) and variations of this detector (thermionic detector (Patterson, 1982), nitrogen-phosphorous detector) and the flame photometric detector (FPD) (Bowman, 1981). The AFID makes use of the phenomenon that the flame ionization detector yields enhanced response to nitrogen- and phosphorus-containing compounds, in the presence of alkali metal salts. The detection limit is in the low picogram range. The detector discriminates against other compounds 30-50 fold. The flame photometric detector (FPD) operates with a cool, hydrogen rich flame for the detection of phosphorus- and sulfur-containing compounds, which form POH and S2 species. These species emit light at 526 nm (POH) and 394 nm (S2), which is monitored by using interference filters and a photomultiplier. The detector is easy to operate and results are reproducible. The detector is highly specific. The response of 100 ng of parathion is 130 000 times greater than that of an equal amount of aldrin. Furthermore, It is of advantage that any solvent can be used with the detector. For the determination of methyl parathion the P mode is the method of choice, though the S mode can also be used (sensitivity 10 times lower) as methyl parathion contains both P and S atoms. Finally, the electron capture detector (ECD) is sometimes used for the analysis of methyl parathion as it responds not only to the P=S moiety, but in particular to the NO2 group. (b) Columns A definite identification of a pesticide by its retention time on one column is not possible. Analysis on at least one further column with a stationary phase of different polarity is necessary to confirm the identity of a compound. Packed columns are frequently used for pesticide residue analysis, though resolution is substantially poorer compared with capillary columns and identification of the pesticides is less specific. Solid supports are usually of the Chromosorb W type. In some instances, Gaschrom Q has also been used. A large variety of stationary phases, used either alone or in admixture, have been employed. The most frequently used phases are DC 200, QF-1, OV 17, OV-101, OV-210, and SE-30. Relative retention times for many stationary phases have been reported by several authors for a large variety of pesticides (up to 600 compounds including other industrial chemicals) (Bowman & Beroza, 1967; Ambrus et al., 1981b; Daldrup et al., 1981; Prinsloo & de Beer, 1987; Saxton, 1987; Suprock & Vinopal, 1987; Omura et al., 1990). Packed column GC allows the separation of only a limited number of pesticides. Capillary columns exhibit a considerably better separation efficiency than packed columns. Such capillary columns have been used by several authors for methyl parathion analysis (Krijgsman & van den Kamp, 1976; Ripley & Braun, 1983; Stan & Goebel, 1983; Ebing, 1985; Andersson & Ohlin, 1986; Vogelsang & Thier, 1986). Retention time data on a SE-30 capillary column have been reported (Ripley & Braun, 1983). Several injection techniques for capillary columns have been compared (Stan & Goebel, 1984; Stan & Mueller, 1988). Cold splitless (PTV) injection appears to be best suited for organophosphorous pesticide analysis. The resolution can be further improved by applying two-dimensional capillary gas chromatography using two columns of different polarity (Stan & Mrowetz, 1983). 184.108.40.206 High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) The main advantage of HPLC is its ability to analyse compounds that are heat labile, such as phenylurea and carbamates. As stated above, organophosphorous pesticides including methyl parathion are sufficiently heat stable for analysis using gas chromatography and there is no direct need to use HPLC. Thus, relatively few studies dealing with the HPLC analysis of methyl parathion have been reported. HPLC analysis has been achieved using reversed phase chromatography, with acetonitrile/water (60:40) (Funch, 1981), or methanol/acetic acid/water (32:0.6: 47.4) as solvents, and UV- detection (Zhao & Wang, 1984). HPLC conditions for 166 pesticides including methyl parathion were reported by Lawrence & Turton (1978). Retention data of 560 pesticides and other industrial chemicals have been published by Daldrup et al. (1981, 1982) using two gradient systems. Sharma et al. (1990) developed a method for the rapid quantitative analysis of organophosphorus (including methyl parathion) and carbamate pesticides using HPLC and refractive index detection. HPLC appears to be particularly suited for the analysis of polar metabolites of methyl parathion (Abe et al., 1979). Fluorogenic labelling of organophosphorous pesticides leads to an improvement in sensitivity. Such labelling can be achieved by hydrolysis of the compounds to the corresponding phenols and derivatization with dansyl chloride (5-dimethylamino-naphthalene-1- sulfonyl chloride) (Lawrence et al., 1976). Besides the UV and fluorescence detector, electrochemical detectors have been used for the detection of methyl parathion using amperometric detection in the reductive mode (Bratin et al., 1981; Clark et al., 1985) or polaro- graphic detection (Koen & Huber, 1970). Acetonitrile/water with additional acetate buffer is used as solvent. The response is similar to the UV detector, but there is less interference from the plant material (Clark et al., 1985). 220.127.116.11 Thin layer chromatography (TLC) Thin layer chromatography is well suited for the analysis organophosphorous pesticides, even if it is not as specific as GC (Kawahara et al., 1967; Schütz & Schindler, 1974; Thielemann, 1974; Katkar & Barve, 1976; Lawrence et al., 1976; Curini et al., 1980; Daldrup et al., 1981; Pfeiffer & Stahr, 1982; Korsos & Lantos, 1984). Usually, silica gel G plates are used with a variety of solvent or solvent mixtures. These include benzene, chloroform/cyclohexane, n-hexane/acetone, chloroform/benzene, dichloro-methane/acetone. Silver nitrate is frequently used as spray reagent, which, in the presence of organophosphorous pesticides, leads to white spots against a black background (Pfeiffer & Stahr, 1982). As an alternative, an enzymatic reaction has been frequently applied to detect organophosphorous compounds on TLC plates (Mueller, 1973; Leshev & Talanov, 1977; Ambrus et al., 1981a; Bhaskar & Kumar, 1981; Devi et al., 1982). This method makes use of the fact that cholinesterase (from horse serum or cow liver) hydrolises 1-naphthyl acetate to 1-naphthol, which reacts either with Fast Blue Salt B or p-nitrobenzenediazoniumfluoroborate to form a coloured complex. If methyl parathion is inhibiting the enzyme reaction, white spots on a red or orange background appear. The sensitivity may be enhanced if methyl parathion is oxidized to methylparaoxon by reaction with bromine or hydrogen peroxide. 18.104.22.168 Spectrophotometry Colorimetric methods, which were of importance during the early years of organophosphorous pesticide analysis, have largely been replaced by chromatographic methods. The inhibition of cholinesterase by organophosphorous pesticides, described above, is also the basis of a photometric method (Archer & Zweig, 1959; Kumar & Ramasundari, 1980; Bhaskar & Kumar, 1982, 1984; Kumar, 1985). Sadar et al. (1970) made use of the fact that cholinesterase hydrolyses the non fluorescent N-methyl- indoxylacetate to the highly fluorescent indoxyl. This reaction is again inhibited by methyl parathion. In another spectrophotometric method, methyl parathion is treated with hydroxylamine hydrochloride and sodium nitroprusside, under alkaline conditions, to form a water-soluble, coloured complex (Sastry & Vijaya, 1986). The method is rapid and accurate and can be used for formulations and for residues in fruits and vegetables. 22.214.171.124 Polarography Polarography and various modifications of this method, i.e., the "differential pulse polarography" (DPP), have been used repeatedly to determine methyl parathion and other organophosphorous compounds with a nitro group (Nangniot, 1966; Gajan, 1969; Kheifets et al., 1976; Zietek, 1976; Smyth & Osteryoung, 1978; Kheifets et al., 1980; Khan, 1988; Reddy & Reddy, 1989). The method allows the simultanous determination of parathion, methyl parathion, paraoxon, EPN, and the metabolite 4-nitrophenol (Zietek, 1976) in blood, without prior extraction. Polarography has been proposed as confirmatory method for the determination of methyl parathion (and three further pesticides). A collaborative study of 10 laboratories showed a coeffient of variation of 15-16% (Gajan, 1969). In addition the method was applied to water analysis (Kheifets et al., 1976, 1980; Bourquet et al., 1989). Bourquet et al. (1989) showed a 20-50 increase in sensitivity when "adsorptive stripping voltametry" was used instead of DPP. 126.96.36.199 Mass spectrometry Coupled gas chromatography/electron impact mass spectrometry (GC/MS) is a particularly valuable method for confirming pesticide residues in various environmental samples. Methyl parathion shows an abundant m/z=109, 125, and 263 (M+.) under electron impact conditions (Mestres et al., 1977; Wilkins, 1990). Under positive ion chemical ionization mass spectrometry (methane), the protonatic molecule is the most abundant ion (m/z 264) while the structure specific fragment at m/z 125 is due to (CH3O)2 P=S+ (8.8%) (Holmstead & Casida, 1974). The negative ion chemical ionization spectrum shows the typical thiophenolate fragment at m/z=154 (-S-C6H4-NO2) (Nielsen, 1985). In addition, field ionization (FI) and field desorption (FD) mass spectrometry have been applied repeatedly in the determination of of methyl parathion (Damico et al., 1969; Klisenko et al., 1981; Schulten & Sun, 1981; Golovatyi et al., 1982). The FD spectra show little fragmentation and, thus, are not well suited for environmental analysis. Among the newer mass spectrometric techniques, tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) shows more promise for organophosphorous pesticide analysis, as this technique enhances the selectivity of the method and thus may reduce the necessary clean-up. Under MS/MS conditions (chemical ionization), the protonated molecule forms an abundant fragment at m/z 125 ((CH3O)2 P=S+) (Hummel & Yost, 1986; Roach & Andrzejewski, 1987). HPLC/MS of methyl parathion has been demonstrated (De Wit et al., 1987; Betowski & Jones, 1988; Farran et al., 1990). As this method is more difficult to handle and less sensitive and reproducible than GC/MS, there is no need to use it in routine analysis, except when other thermally labile pesticides are to be determined together with organophosphorous compounds. 2.4.3 Detection limits Detection limits are rarely reported. When plant material was analysed, the detection limit for the overall method (extraction, clean-up, analysis) was 10-100 µg/kg when gas chromatography with AFID or FPD was used. In water analysis, substantially better detection limits were achieved (usually 0.01-0.1 µg/litre), which may be further reduced if a large-scale extractor is used (Foster & Rogerson, 1990). In air analysis, detection limits have been reported to be 0.1-1 ng/m3. 2.4.4 Confirmatory method A confirmatory derivatization method was proposed by Lee et al. (1984). Following hydrolysis with KOH, 4-nitrophenol was derivatized with pentafluoro benzyl bromide to the corresponding ether. Analysis is carried out by GC with ECD. Levels as low as 0.01 ppb can be confirmed. Table 1. Sampling, extraction, clean-up, and determination of methyl parathiona Matrix Sampling, extraction, clean-up Analytical Recovery (%) Detection limitb References method (µg/kg or litre) fruits, extr.: acetonitrile, GC (ECD, TID) 86-92 n.r. Wessel (1967) vegetables part.: petroleum ether, TLC clean-up: Florisil plant material, extr.: propylene carbonate, GC (ECD, TID) 82-95 n.r. Schnorbus & dairy products clean-up: Florisil Phillips (1967) fruits, extr.: acetonitrile, GC (ECD) 90-98 n.r. Osadchuck et al. vegetables, part.: dichloromethane + hexane, (1971) fat, oil clean-up: Florisil vegetables extr.: acetone, GC (ECD, TID) 93 (celery) n.r. Luke et al. (1975) part.: dichloromethane/petroleum ether, clean-up: Florisil apples extr.: toluene + n-hexane, GC (ECD) 93 1-20 Johansson (1978) clean-up: Florisil vegetables autom. extraction + n.r. 91-104 n.r. Gretch & Rosen clean-up: Florisil (pepper) (1984) food extr.: acetone, GC n.r. n.r. Specht & Tillkes part.: dichloromethane, (1980) clean-up: GPC + silica gel Table 1 (continued) Matrix Sampling, extraction, clean-up Analytical Recovery (%) Detection limitb References method (µg/kg or litre) fruits, extr.: acetone, GC (ECD,FPD, > 80 10-100 Andersson & vegetables part.: dichloromethane hexane, TID) Ohlin (1986) clean-up: GPC and silica gel vegetables, extr.: trichloromethane, GC (FPD) 93-105 n.r. Ault et al. (1979) fruits, clean-up: GPC crops vegetables extr.: acetone, GC (TID) 85-95 n.r. Pflugmacher & part.: dichloromethane, Ebing (1974) clean-up: GPC - clean-up: GPC n.r. n.r. n.r. Steinwandter (1988) - clean-up: cellulose column n.r. 82 n.r. Stahr et al. (1979) fruits, extr.: acetonitrile, HPLC (UV 280) 77-87 10 Funch (1981) vegetables part.: dichloromethane honey bees, extr.: acetone o-xylene GC (FPD) 92-101 1 Ross & Harvey beewax, pollen (1981) plants, soil extr.: supercritical methanol GC (ECD, AFID) 38 n.r. Capriel et al. (1986) tobacco extr.: hexane/acetone, GC (FPD) 99-104 20 Sagredos & Eckert clean-up: alumina (1976) Table 1 (continued) Matrix Sampling, extraction, clean-up Analytical Recovery (%) Detection limitb References method (µg/kg or litre) vegetables extr.: acetone, GC (ECD,TID, n.r. n.r. Gyorfi et al. part.: dichloromethane, FPD) (1987) clean-up: charcoal plant material extr.: acetone, GC (AFID, ECD) 92-103 n.r. Becker (1971) part.: dichloromethane plant material extr.: acetone, GC (ECD, AFID) 92-103 n.r. Becker (1979) part.: dichloromethane, clean-up: charcoal plant material extr.: acetone, HPLC n.r. n.r. Miellet (1982) clean-up: charcoal/Florisil barley, malt, extr.: acetone or acetonitrile, GC (FPD) 82 30 Sonobe et al. hops part.: hexane, (1982) clean-up: charcoal low moisture extr.: acetone, GC (FPD) 93 n.r. Luke & Doose products part.: dichloromethane/petrol, (1983) (pepper) ether, clean-up: charcoal ready-to-eat extr.: acetone GC (ECD, TID) n.r. 0.7-1.8 Vogelsang & Thier foods part.: dichloromethane, (1986) clean-up: + GPC silica gel honey bees extr.: acetone GC (ECD) 91 15 Ebing (1985) clean-up: charcoal Table 1 (continued) Matrix Sampling, extraction, clean-up Analytical Recovery (%) Detection limitb References method (µg/kg or litre) milk, oilseeds fat adsorbed on alumina GC (ECD, FPD) n.r. 80 Luke & Doose extr.: acetonitrile, (1984) part.: petroleum ether fat ad.: of fat on Calflo E n.r. n.r. Specht (1978) edible oils sweep co-distillation GC (TID) 95 10 (mg/kg) Storherr et al. (1967) edible oils extr.: petroleum ether, GC(FPD) 83-107 n.r. Gillespie & clean-up: HPLC Walters (1989) milk sweep co-distillation GC (TID) > 87 n.r. Watts & Storherr (1967) blood extr.: n-hexane GC (FPD) n.r. 3 Gabica et al. (1971) serum extr.: benzene GC (AFID) 69 2 De Potter et al. (1978) blood no extr. polarography 7x10-8 mol Zietek (1976) soil extr.: acetone/hexane GC (TID) n.r. n.r. Agishev et al. (1977) soil extr.: acetone/hexane TLC (silica n.r. n.r. Garrido & gel) Monteoliva (1981) Table 1 (continued) Matrix Sampling, extraction, clean-up Analytical Recovery (%) Detection limitb References method (µg/kg or litre) soil, sediment extr.: acetone/hexane, GC (AFID) 71 0.17 Kjoelholt (1985) clean-up: ad. chrom. soil extr.: acetone, GC (TID) 78-85 5 Wegman et al. part.: dichloromethane, (1984) clean-up: silica gel soil, water, extr.: hexane/isopropanol, GC (ECD) 45 n.r. Schutzmann et al. sediment desulfurization with Raney copper (1971) water diethylether/hexane or benzene/ GC (ECD) n.r. n.r. Kawahara et al. n-C6, (1967) clean-up: TLC water extr.: benzene GC (TID) 95 n.r. Pionke et al. (1968) water extr.: benzene GC 92-101 0.001 (?) Konrad et al. (1969) water extr.: petroleum ether GC 98 0.04 Zweig & Devine (1969) water extr.: trichloromethane TLC 60-95 1 Chmil et al. (1978) water extr.: trichloromethane GC(TID) n.r. 0.01 Chernyak & Oradovskii (1980) Table 1 (continued) Matrix Sampling, extraction, clean-up Analytical Recovery (%) Detection limitb References method (µg/kg or litre) water/ extr.: at pH 11: dichloromethane; GC/MS 60-85 5 Spingarn et al. wastewater at pH 2: dichloromethane (1982) water extr.: dichloromethane/hexane, GC (ECD) n.r. n.r. Albanis et al. clean-up: Florisil (1986) water extr.: ethylacetate GC (FPD) 85-91 0.08 ng(abs.) Li & Wang (1987) wastewater extr.: dichloromethane, GC (FPD) 90 0.75 Miller et al. clean-up: Florisil (1981) water extr.: petroleum ether, GC (ECD) n.r. 0.5 Mestres et al. clean-up: Florisil (1969) water extr.: dichloromethane GC/MS 75 n.r. Bruchet et al. (continuous) liquid-liquid) (1984) water extr.: n-pentane (continous GC (TID) 90 0.01 Brodesser & liquid-liquid) Schoeler (1987) water hydrolysis KOH, derivat. penta GC (ECD) 95 0.1 Coburn & Chau fluoro-benzylbromide, (1974) clean-up: silica gel water ad.: on Tenax, thermoelution GC (FID/ECD) 62 0.01 Agostiano et al. (1983) water, run-off ad.: XAD-2, HPLC (rev. 99 2 Paschal et al. water elut.: diethylether phase, UV) (1977) Table 1 (continued) Matrix Sampling, extraction, clean-up Analytical Recovery (%) Detection limitb References method (µg/kg or litre) water, ad.: XAD-2, GC (TID, FID) 93-100 15 pg(abs.) Le Bel et al. drinking-water elut.: acetone/hexane (1979) water ad.: XAD-4, GC n.r. n.r. Xue (1984) elut.: diethylether/hexane water ad.: Porapack Q, HPLC (rev. 96-105 < 1 Clark et al. (1985) elut.: acetonitrile phase electro-chem.) water ad.: C-18, TLC n.r. 0.2 ng(abs.) Sherma & elut.: ethyl acetate Bretschneider (1990) water ad.: C-18, acetone GC (FPD) > 79 n.r. Swineford & Belisle (1989) water extr.: dichloromethane GC/MS 48 0.0025 Foster & Rogerson (large-scale extractor) (1990) air ab.: ethylene-glycol, GC (FPD) 87-97 n.r. Sherma & Shafik extr.: dichloromethane, (1975) clean-up: silica gel air ab.: cotton seed oil coated glass GC (FPD) 91 0.04 ng/m3 Compton (1973) beads, clean-up: Florisil air clothscreen with ethylene glycol, GC (ECD/FPD) 93 n.r. Tessari & Spencer extr.: acetone/hexane, (1971) clean-up: alumina + Florisil Table 1 (continued) Matrix Sampling, extraction, clean-up Analytical Recovery (%) Detection limitb References method (µg/kg or litre) air ad.: silica gel, activated GC (ECD/FPD) n.r. 1 ng (abs.) Klisenko & charcoal Girenko (1980) air ad.: silica gel GC (FPD) 101-104 30 pg (abs.) Liang & Zhang (1986) air ad.: XAD-4, GC (ECD, TID) 74 1-3 ng/m3 Wehner et al. elut: ethylacetate, (1984) clean-up: HPLC air ad.: PUF, GC (ECD) 100 n.r. Rice et al. (1977) elut: petroleum ether air ad.: PUF (high volume sampler) GC (ECD, FPD) 86 0.1 ng/m3 Lewis et al. (1977) air ad.: PUF (low volume sampler), GC (ECD, FPD) 80 20 ng/m3 Lewis & MacLeod elut: diethylether/hexane (1982) air ad.: PUF/other polymers (high GC 72-91 n.r. Lewis & Jackson volume sampler) (1982) air ad.: PUF, n.r. n.r. n.r. Belashova et al. elut.: trichloromethane or (1983) acetaldehyde air ad.: Tenax, GC (FID) n.r. 2.5 µg/m3 Beine (1987) elut.: toluene formulations - GC or HPLC - - Jackson (1976) Table 1 (continued) Matrix Sampling, extraction, clean-up Analytical Recovery (%) Detection limitb References method (µg/kg or litre) formulations - GC - - Jackson (1977a) formulations - HPLC - - Jackson (1977b) formulations - IR - - Goza (1972) formulations - P-31 NMR - - Greenhalgh et al. (1983) formulations hydrolysis to p-nitrophenol Spectr. - - Blanco & Sanchez (1989) a Abbreviations: GC = gas chromatography, TLC = thin-layer chromatography, GPC = gel permeation chromatography, MS = mass spectrometry, HPLC = high performance liquid chromatography, NMR = nuclear magnetic resonance, IR = infrared spectroscopy, ECD = electron capture detector, FID = flame ionization detector, AFID = alkali flame ionization detector, FPD = flame photometric detector, TID = thermionic detector, UV = ultraviolet detector, spectr. = spectrophotometry, extr. = extraction, part. = partitioning, ad. = adsorption, ab. = absorption, elut. = elution, n.r. = not reported, (abs.) = absolute. b µg/kg or litre unless stated otherwise. Table 2. Methods used in the determination of methyl parathion Method Detection limit Remarks References HPLC (UV) n.r. analysis Abe et al. (1979) of metabolism HPLC (UV) n.r. in mixtures Zhao & Wang (rev. phase, methanol/ (1984) acetic acid) HPLC n.r. review on HPLC Lawrence & Turton (1978) methods HPLC (fluorescence) 10-20 µg (abs.)- deriv. with dansyl Lawrence et al. (1976) chloride HPLC 1. acetonitrile n.r. retention times of Daldrup et al. (1982) 2 acetonitrile/phosphoric 560 compounds acid KH2PO4/H2O HPLC 1. acetonitrile n.r. retention times of Daldrup et al. (1981) 2 acetonitrile/phosphoric 570 compounds acid KH2PO4/H2O HPLC (rev. phase, 10 µg/kg fruits and vegetables Funch (1981) acetonitrile/H2O) Table 2 (continued) Method Detection limit Remarks References HPLC (rev. phase, 1 µg/kg reduction amperometric Clark et al. (1985) acetonitrile/0.01 KC1 detection 0.03 M potassium (vegetables, water) acetate/H20) HPLC (rev. phase, n.r. electrochemical Bratin et al. (1981) acetonitrile/sodium detection acetate/H2O) HPLC rev. phase (H2O 30 µg/kg polarographic Koen & Huber (1970) ethyl alcohol/acetic detection acid/NaOH) GC < 2 ng TID Patterson (1982) GC n.r. retention times of Daldrup et al. (1981) 570 compounds GC (TID) 20 µg/kg retention times Ambrus et al. (1981a,b) GC n.r. retention times of Saxton (1987) 600 compounds GC n.r. retention times of Prinsloo & de Beer (1987) 42 pesticides n.r. retention times of Suprock & Vinopal (1987) 78 pesticides Table 2 (continued) Method Detection limit Remarks References GC n.r. retentions times of Bowman & Beroza (1967) 20 OP-pesticides (milk, corn silage) GC n.r. two dimensional Stan & Mrowetz (1983) GC GC (FPD) 100 pg capillary columns, Krijgsman & Van de Kamp (1976) relative retention times GC (ECD, TID) n.r. capillary columns, Stan & Goebel (1983) simultaneous detection of ECD, TID GC n.r. retention times Ripley & Braun (1983) of 194 pesticides GC < 0.1 ng relative retention Omura et al. (1990) times of 40 pesticides on 11 phases Table 2 (continued) Method Detection limit Remarks References GC (ECD) n.r. hydrolysis of Lee et al. (1984) methyl parathion to 4-nitrophenol, derivat. penta-fluorobenzylbromide Clean-up: silica gel TLC (silica gel G) n.r. detection with GC Kawahara et al. (1967) TLC (silica gel) 0.1 µg 4 solvent mixtures, Schütz & Schindler (1974) reduct. to amines TLC (silica gel) 0.06-0.6 µg saponification and Thielemann (1974) reduct. to p-amino-phenol TLC (silica gel G) n.r. elut.: n-hexane/acetone Katkar & Barve (1976) TLC (silica gel) n.r. 17 solvent systems, Curini et al. (1980) spray reagent: AgNO3 TLC (silica gel) n.r. elut.: 1.methanol/NH3H2O Daldrup et al. (1981) 2. dichloromethane/ acetone TLC (silica gel) n.r. elut.: n-heptane/acetone Pfeiffer & Stahr (1982) Table 2 (continued) Method Detection limit Remarks References TLC (silica gel) elut.: petroleum ether/ Korsos & Lantos (1984) diethylether, two dimensional TLC TLC n.r. elut.: benzene/acetone, Mueller (1973) detect. enzymatic reaction TLC (silica gel/ elut.: 4 solvent Leshchev & Talanov (1977) starch) mixtures, milk, feed, animal tissue, extr: acetone, detect. enzymatic reaction TLC (silica gel G) n.r. detect. enzymatic Bhaskar & Kumar (1981) reaction TLC (silica gel G) 5 µg (abs.) elut.: dichloromethane Ambrus et al. (1981a,b) or ethyl acetate, detect. enzymatic reaction TLC n.r. detect. enzymatic Devi et al. (1982) reaction Table 2 (continued) Method Detection limit Remarks References polarography 140 µg/kg oscillographic Nangniot (1966) polarography, pesticide residues polarography 10 µg/kg single sweep Gajan (1969) oscillographic polarography, non-fatty foods polarography n.r. differential Kheifets et al. (1976) oscillographic polarography (water) polarography 7x10-6 mol/litre methyl parathion and Zietek (1976) metabolites in blood polarography 10-8 mol/litre - Smyth & Osteryoung (1978) polarography n.r. adsorptive stripping Bourquet et al. (1988) polarography n.r. - Kahn (1988) polarography 3.9.10-9 mol/litre polargaraphy, diff. Reddy & Reddy (1989) pulse polargraphy cyclic voltametry Table 2 (continued) Method Detection limit Remarks References differ. n.r. water Kheifets et al. (1980) chronoamperometry spectrophotometry n.r. enzymatic reaction Kumar (1985) (cholinesterase, Fast Blue B) spectrophotometry n.r. reduction to amine, Sastry & Vijaya (1986) formation of a coloured complex spectrophotometry n.r. reaction with 3-methyl- Sastry & Vijaya (1987) 2-benzothiazolinone spectrophotometry n.r. hydrolysis to Ramakrishna & Ramachandran 4-nitro-phenol (1978) a Abbreviations: GC = gas chromatography, HPLC = high performance liquid chromatography, TLC= thin layer chromatography, ECD = electron capture detector, TID = thermionic detector, FPD = flame photometric detector, UV = ultraviolet detector, elut. = elution, n.r. = not reported, (abs.) = absolute. 3. SOURCES OF HUMAN AND ENVIRONMENTAL EXPOSURE 3.1 Natural occurrence Natural occurrence of methyl parathion is unlikely. 3.2 Man-made sources 3.2.1 Production process Methyl parathion is a representative of the highly active insecticides, the thiophosphorus esters, developed in the 1940s by Schrader, a German chemist. Methyl parathion was introduced as a commercial chemical in 1949. It is synthesized by the reaction of O,O-dimethyl phosphoro-chloridothioate with the sodium salt of 4- nitrophenol (Schrader, 1963). 3.2.2 Loss into the environment Emissions of methyl parathion during the production process can be disregarded when compared with those from its use as an insecticide. The air emission from a factory in the USA was reported to be around 0.1% of the production level (Archer et al., 1978). The major losses of this insecticide are directly caused by spraying, and evaporation from water surfaces, leaves, and from the soil (Woodrow et al., 1977). 3.2.3 Production According to the European Directory of Agrochemical Products (1986) and the Directory of World Chemical Producers (1990), methyl parathion is produced throughout the world by many companies. World production in 1966 was 31 700 tonnes, including 14 800 tonnes produced in the USA. In Table 3, selected countries producing methyl parathion are listed together with their production capacities (Bayer, 1988). Table 3. Methyl parathion production capacities in different countriesa Country Production capacity in tonnes/year Brazil 3000 Denmark 15 000 German Democratic Republic 3500 Mexico 8000 India 3000 China 40 000 USSR 5000-10 000 a From: Bayer (1988). 3.2.4 World consumption Recent data from Bayer concerning the consumption of the active ingredient only are reported in Table 4 (Bayer, 1988). Table 4. Methyl parathion consumption in tonnes in some areas of the worlda Region 1984 1985 1986 Africa 191 308 152 North America 2 045 2 776 2 932 South America 9 135 6 555 5 587 Asia, New Zealand, 2 757 3 028 2 620 Australia Western Europe 894 1 087 1 019 Total 15 022 13 754 12 310 aFrom: Bayer (1988). In 1984, the USA exported 3010 tonnes of methyl parathion (HSDB, 1990). 3.2.5 Formulations Methyl parathion is used in following formulations: (1) emulsifiable concentrates (EC) with 19.5%, 40%, 50%, 60% active ingredient (a.i.) (2) wettable powders containing 40% a.i. (3) dusts 1.5%, 2%, and 3% methyl parathion, (4) microencapsulated methyl parathion, and (5) ready-to-use liquid (less than 1% a.i.). The usual carriers are: petroleum solvents and clay carriers (such as propargite). Combinations are available containing parathion, omethoate, tetradifon, prothoate, and petroleum oil. 3.3 Uses Methyl parathion is a broad-spectrum insecticide with non-systemic contact and stomach action. The normal method of application is foliar spraying by aircraft or ground equipment. Data from 1971 show that most methyl parathion was used for protecting cotton fields (Table 5). Table 5. Methyl parathion consumption pattern (1971)a Protection of consumption (%) cotton 83 soybeans 8 grain including corn 5 wheat 2 tobacco, peanuts, vegetables, and citrus fruits 2 aFrom: HSDB (1990). Only foliar application of methyl parathion is known. It is used as a contact insecticide and acaricide. There are different routes of application depending on the type of plant to be protected and the organisms killed. The recommended application rate is 0.5-1 kg a.i./ha for vegetables, 1-2 kg/ha for cereals, 1.5-6 kg/ha for fruit trees, 2-5 kg/ha for citrus fruits, and 0.12-1.0 kg/ha for cotton. 4. ENVIRONMENTAL TRANSPORTATION, DISTRIBUTION, AND TRANSFORMATION 4.1 Transportation and distribution between media The transportation and distribution of methyl parathion in air, water, soil, fauna, and flora are influenced by several physical, chemical, and biological parameters. The transportation and fate of methyl parathion were studied by Gile & Gillett (1981). They used the simulated ecosystem developed at the Corvallis Environmental Research Laboratory of the US EPA (Gillett & Gile, 1976). A 16-h daily light cycle with an average of 27 000 lx at the soil surface was used. The temperatures varied from 18 °C at night to 30 °C during the day. The ecological compartment was ventilated with 10 litre air/min. The simulated ecosystem included alfalfa (Medicago sativa) and perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne). Twenty days after planting, different representative kinds of invertebrates (earthworms, nematodes, garden snails) were added to the microcosms. Ten days later, radioactive labelled 14C-methyl parathion (50 µCi) was applied at rates of 0.3, 0.6, and 2.4 kg/ha. One week following the methyl parathion application, a gravid gray-tailed vole (Microtus canicaudus) was placed in the model ecosystem. The relative 14C mass balance of the study is shown in the Table 6. Most radioactivity was found in the upper 5 cm of soil. A comparable experiment with p-nitrophenol showed a lower soil content and no residues in the groundwater as well. Crossland & Elgar (1983) used a mathematical model to predict the dispersion and degradation of methyl parathion in freshwater ponds. Basic assumptions of the model were that loss processes could be adequately described in terms of simple partition phenomena and first-order rate kinetics. Predictions of the model were compared with experimentally-obtained data for concentrations of methyl parathion in water and sediment. They started with a concentration of 100 µg methyl parathion/litre pond water. At the limit of the analytical method (0.005 µg/g), they could not find any residues of methyl parathion, 16 days after treatment. The authors described the degradation by a pseudo first order rate constant that was temperature-dependent. Since the degradation of methyl parathion in distilled water (pH not given) was faster than expected and the bacteria concentration was only 106/litre, a sediment-catalysed hydrolysis was supposed. Crossland & Bennett (1984) compared degradation of methyl parathion in experimental ponds and laboratory aquaria. Degradation was faster in the natural ponds and faster than predicted from simple mathematical models. Addition of plants, sediment, or sediment with plants, to the laboratory aquaria increased the rate of breakdown of methyl parathion; sediment had the greatest effect reducing half-life from 300 h in water alone to 90-140 h. These findings support the investigation of Goedicke & Winkler (1976), who considered, from their testing of the persistence of different formulations of methyl parathion in soils, that the compound would not contaminate groundwater, if applied at suggested rates and intervals. Table 6. 14C mass balance of methyl parathion in a model ecosystema Samples Application rate of methyl parathion 0.3 kg/ha 0.6 kg/ha 2.4 kg/ha air 57b 46 33 soil 30 30 28 groundwater 0.0 0.1 0.0 plants 12 23 38 animals 1.0 0.6 1.1 a From: Gillett & Gile (1976). b %. 4.1.1 Air Most of this insecticide is directly liberated by spraying. However, a perceptible amount is released simultaneously with evaporation from water surfaces, leaves, or soil (Woodrow et al., 1977). Air samples were analysed after the application of methyl parathion at a concentration of 1.12 kg/ha (Jackson & Lewis, 1978). The conventional emulsifiable concentrate was compared with an encapsulated formulation. The filter collection efficiency was determined to be 105% and the extraction efficiency was 92%. During the experimental period, the temperature varied from 18 to 34 °C at an average relative humidity of 72%. The results of the analysis of the air samples collected in tobacco-growing areas of North Carolina are shown in Table 7. Table 7. Concentration of methyl parathion in the air after applicationa Time (days) Methyl parathion (mg/m3) emulsifiable concentrate encapsulated formulation 0 7.408 3.783 1 3.338 0.330 3 0.584 0.107 6 0.036 0.025 6 0.054 0.019 9 0.013 0.016 a From: Jackson & Lewis (1978). Since the usual atmospheric levels of methyl parathion in the surroundings of agricultural areas range from not detectable to 71 ng/m3, Jackson & Lewis (1978) discussed the possibility that the concentrations measured on day 9 may have been the result of the background level in the air of the heavily treated areas The atmospheric concentration of methyl parathion after spraying in the Kalinin District, Tashkent Province of the Uzbek USSR, during July and August, was determined by Akhmedov (1968). He found that the concentrations measured were dependent on the size of the area of methyl parathion application, the time of application, the temperature, and the wind velocity. In addition, the odour threshold was estimated, and effects on the brain electrical activity, resorption action, dark adaptation, and the light sensitivity of the eyes were studied. After the aerial treatment of forests, Vrochinsky & Makovsky (1977) measured the following concentrations of methyl parathion in the air (Table 8). The concentrations of methyl parathion increased in foggy conditions because of the adsorption of the compound on the surface of water aerosols (Goncharuk et al., (1988). Table 8. Methyl parathion in air after spraying forestsa Time (days) Methyl parathion (mg/m3) 0 0.12 1 0.05 5 0.024 10 0.0015 a From: Vrochinsky & Makovsky (1977). 14C-Methyl parathion was subjected to simulated rainfall (total amount: 2.5, 25, and 38 mm/h) after application of 177 µg ai/cm2 to an octadecylsilane/trimethylsilane-treated glass slide. The amounts of 14C remaining after washoff were 56%, 6%, and 2% respectively; thus, methyl parathion shows a high rate of washoff (Cohen & Steinmetz, 1986). 4.1.2 Water Various mechanisms exist for the transportation of methyl parathion following its application to aquatic environments, including: application-associated losses, volatilization, wind erosion, rinsing by rain into groundwater, and transportation as a soil-methyl parathion complex. Eichelberger & Lichtenberg (1971) estimated the water pollution factor by investigating the persistence of methyl parathion in river water. They used a sealed glass jar containing river water and methyl parathion and applied sunlight and artificial fluorescent light. The initial concentration of methyl parathion was 10 µg/litre (Table 9): Badawy & El-Dib (1984) found that methyl parathion was more stable in water of high salinity, such as sea water, than in fresh water. Table 9. Persistence of methyl parathion in river watera Time % of the initial concentration (10 µg/litre) 1 hour 80b 1 week 25 2 weeks 10 4 weeks 0 a Adapted from: Eichelberger & Lichtenberg (1971). b Recoveries were rounded off to the nearest 5%. Because of a collision between two ships in the Mediterranean Sea near Port-Said, Egypt, the sea became contaminated with more than 10 000 kg methyl parathion. Maximum methyl parathion concentrations (96 µlitre/litre) were found 50 m in the drifting direction (surface current, wind). In general, the concentration decreased with distance and time and reached the detection limit up to 80 days after the accident. The residues in sediment gradually increased during the first 20 days (concentration factor 49.5) (Badawy et al., 1984). Crossland et al. (1986) gave mathematical tools for calculating the fate of chemicals in aquatic systems (because of the importance of the degradation of methyl parathion in water, see also section 4.2). 4.1.3 Soil Lichtenstein (1975) incorporated an emulsifiable concentration of methyl parathion into the upper 5 inches of a silt loam at a rate of 3.1 mg/kg). One month after treatment, 3.5% of the methyl parathion could be detected in the soil. The author showed that percolating water transported metabolites vertically as well as horizontally. Methyl parathion moved less than 20 cm in a loamy soil following an annual precipitation of 1500 mm (Haque & Freed, 1974). Bound residues of [ring-14C] methyl parathion in a silt loam were monitored during an incubation period of 49 days (Gerstl & Helling, 1985). After this period, 54% of the initial 14C remained in the soil; of this, 13% was soxhlet-extractable with methanol and 87% was bound residue. Several treatments indicated that bound residues of methyl parathion are not easily released (i.e., converted to an extractable form), but that they are slowly mineralized to CO2. A simulated spillage of emulsifiable or microencapsulated formulations of methyl parathion on soil (sandy loam; pH ranging from 6.6 to 7.8, with a mean of 7.2) was studied for 45 months by Butler and coworkers (1981). The uptake of the insecticide was studied in five different experiments. The soil was contaminated with: a) 51% emulsifiable concentrate formulation (E.C.), b) dilute drum rinse of E.C., c) 22% microencapsulated formulation (M.C.), d) dilute drum rinse of M.C., and e) a solid cake of M.C. microencapsulated formulation of the initial values (Table 10). At 45 months, soil residues of methyl parathion had decreased by 64% for emulsifiable concentrate spills, and 68% for the soil beneath the microencapsulated cake; the residue in the cake itself only decreased by 31% (Table 10). Soil residue concentrations from the simulated drum rinses (Table 10) were very low by 45 months (emulsifiable concentrate) and by one year (microencapsulated formulation). Performing laboratory experiments, Davidson et al. (1980) showed that, at low application rates (24.5 mg/kg), methyl parathion was non-persistent in soils (Webster & Cecil) but was persistent following application of large quantities (10015 mg/kg). Therefore, it is impossible to predict the behaviour of methyl parathion at high applications rates on the basis of results following low application rates. 4.1.4 Vegetation and wildlife Residue levels of methyl parathion on foliage depend on the formulation, the method of application, humidity, rain, temperature, dust levels etc. Kido et al. (1975) investigated surface and internal residue levels of methyl parathion on grape leaves treated with methyl parathion sprays (at the rate of 0.84 kg a.i./ha.); 90.2% of the initial surface residue was lost from the leaves one day after application. The major portion, over 60%, of the total residues was found in the internal portion of the leaves, and over 99% of the total residues had been lost, 5 days after application. Overhead sprinkler irrigation of the vines had only a slight, or no, effect on the reduction of methyl parathion residues (Kido et al., 1975). The residual life of methyl parathion on cotton can be extended by Table 10. Persistence of methyl parathion in sandy loam soil and in solid cake material following contamination of the soil with different formulations of methyl parathiona Time Mean concentrations of Methyl parathion (mg/kg) (months) E.C.b E.C. M.C.c M.C. M.C. (51%) (rinse) (22%) (rinse) (cake) 0 48 900 17 600 30 800 2 140 379 000 1 33 700 10 800 14 200 940 258 000 3 25 300 7 000 17 100 550 305 000 12 20 900 3 800 20 000 0.15 87 500 20 20 800 1 400 13 300 230 149 000 45 17 500 130 9 800 n.r.d 262 000 a Modified from: Butler et al. (1981). b E.C. = emulsifiable concentrate. c M.C. = microencapsulated formulation. d n.r. = not recorded. application at dusk rather than dawn. For example, methyl parathion decreased to less than 50% after 4 h in sunlight, but only to 84% after the same time at night (Ware et al., 1980). The persistence of methyl parathion following application to cotton was also increased by combining it with molasses (Ware et al., 1980), toxaphene (Buck et al., 1980; Ware et al., 1980; Bigley et al., 1981), camphene (Bigley et al., 1981), or cedar oil (Bigley et al., 1981). Ware et al. (1983) compared surface residues of methyl parathion on cotton foliage. When applied to cotton fields (at 1.1 kg/ha) as a typical, low-volume spray diluted with water versus ultra-low-volume (ULV) application using vegetable oil as the carrier. Forty-eight hours after application as an aqueous dilution, 1.8 % of the initial residue remained compared with 7.2 % after application as ULV. Cole et al. (1986) sprayed methyl parathion 4E (EC) in either water or water-crop oil (6:1) at 8 litres of a 1.8% dilution/ha on a 5 ha plot of cotton using a pawnee airplane. The residues found in the leaves sprayed with the mixture containing crop oil were higher than those in water-sprayed leaves in all samples collected after the treatment (Table 11). Table 11. Comparison of methyl parathion residues in cotton leaves treated with water sprays and with water-oil spraysa Days after treatment Methyl parathion concentration water water-oil formulation 1 14.80±8.74b 27.70±7.99 2 9.17±7.15 9.68±4.29 3 2.30±0.89 7.48±2.85 4 1.52±0.31 8.70±4.58 5 1.96±1.49 5.97±2.61 a From: Cole et al. (1986). b mg/kg mean ± SE. The drift from a commercial aerial application of methyl parathion was quantified by Draper & Street (1981) by determining leaf surface residues of methyl parathion in a treated alfalfa field and an adjoining non-target pasture (with quackgrass, Agropyron repens, as predominant species). Four hours after the pesticide spraying by plane (0.27 kg/litre emulsifiable concentrate; 0.7 litre/ha; in the morning) 2.8 mg methyl parathion/kg were present as foliar residues in the target field, and 0.26 mg/kg, in the untreated non-target pasture. At both places, the foliar residues of the parent compound dissipated rapidly with time. The time-dependent decrease in the residues of 2 different formulations of methyl parathion applied to tobacco plants was evaluated. Methyl parathion in either the emulsifiable or the encapsulated form was applied at rates of 0, 0.56, and 1.12 kg/ha. Samples were collected before spraying and within 10 min of the application. It was observed that the encapsulated formulation of methyl parathion did not decompose as fast as the emulsifiable form (Leidy et al., 1977). Varis (1972) tried to determine the influence of plant growth on the loss of methyl parathion residues in sugar beet seedlings. Methyl parathion was applied as a dust formulation (1.5%) at 20 kg/ha, 14 days after sowing. The residue methyl parathion concentration in the plants decreased to about 50% within 24 h. Within 6 days, the methyl parathion residue was reduced by 90%, 73% reduction being due to plant growth. Fuhremann & Lichtenstein (1978) performed experiments with unextractable, soil-bound residues of radioactive labelled methyl parathion and measured the potential pick up of the 14C-containing residues. Earthworms (Lumbricus spp.) and oat (Avena sativa L.) plants were able to release and incorporate some soil-bound, 14C-ring-labelled methyl parathion. Oat plants were found to release more chemical from the soil than the earthworms. Following applications of insecticides (including methyl parathion) to nearby sugarcane or cotton fields, alterations in brain acetylcholinesterase activity were found in birds living in brushland within the Lower Rio Grande Valley of South Texas (Custer & Mitchell, 1987). These alterations might have resulted from exposure during the use of agricultural fields as feeding or resting sites. 4.1.5 Entry into the food-chain Methyl parathion hydrolyses faster than parathion. Because of the physical and chemical properties of methyl parathion, its pollution potential seems to be very small. Therefore, the most probable entry into the food-chain seems to be directly via residues on vegetables or crops. Since animals can degrade methyl parathion and excrete the degradation products within a very short time, a risk from eating meat seems to be unlikely. However, there may be an additional hazard from methyl parathion bound to glucosides (Dorough, 1978). 4.2 Biotransformation 4.2.1 Degradation involving biota Both field and laboratory studies have been conducted on the degradation of methyl parathion were. Data suggest that biodegrad ation is the major degradative pathway in eutrophic systems, whereas absorption, photolysis, and hydrolysis are more important in oligotrophic systems. The half-lives of methyl parathion residues reported in the literature for plants were relatively short, but varied with ambient conditions (see also section 4.1.4). Singh et al. (1978) recorded half-lives of methyl parathion applied to urd (Phaseolus mungo Roxb.) and pea ( Pisum sativum (L) var. arvense Poir.) at the rate of 0.63 and 1.25 kg a.i. per ha, respectively. Half-lives were 1.7 and 2.5 days for urd and 2.0 and 2.7 days for pea, respectively. Foliar residues of methyl parathion on alfalfa treated by aircraft (0.27 kg/litre, emulsifiable concentrate) dissipated showing a first-order half-life of 12 h. This calculation is based on initial slopes of semi-logarithmic plots (Draper & Street, 1981). The authors, however, noted that dissipation kinetics appeared to be greater than first-order. The times required for a 50% reduction in methyl parathion residues in cotton foliage were determined to be 4.4-5.4 h (emulsifiable concentrate) or 28.1 h (encapsulated formulation) following application at a rate of 0.28 kg/ha (Smith et al., 1987). Based on data previously reported by Ware et al. (1974a) following application of methyl parathion to cotton (1.12 kg/ha), half-lives of 12 h (emulsifiable concentrate) and 70 h (encapsulated formulation) were calculated (Smith et al., 1987). In another study using emulsifiable concentrate formulations of methyl parathion at a rate of 1.15 kg/ha, a 50% disappearance time of 2-4 h was calculated for methyl parathion on cotton plants (Willis et al., 1985). A half-life of 0.96 days was described for methyl parathion residues (initial concentration = 0.4 µg/cm) on apple leaf surfaces (Goedicke, 1989). A single report is available on the persistence of methyl parathion in a submerged aquatic macrophyte (Hydrilla verticilla) and a fish (carp), both initially exposed to 3.8 mg methyl parathion/litre. The first order half-lives were 7.9 and 5.4 days, respectively (Sabharwal & Belsare, 1986). The half-life of methyl parathion in a soil (not characterized in detail) has been reported to be about 45 days (Menzie, 1972). In another study it was calculated to be as short as 2.7 days (Singh et al., 1978), possibly due to the high pH of the soil (pH = 8.6) and temperature (28 °C-33 °C). Half-lives of 12 and 22 days were measured for methyl parathion in 2 soils (pH = 6.1 and 5.5, respectively) when incubated at 22 °C (Möllhoff, 1981). Concentrations of methyl parathion in a loamy sand soil (pH = 5.3) decreased from a level of about 5 mg/kg to 0.3 mg/kg during a period of 57 days (Goedicke & Winkler, 1976). Thirty days following treatment, 3.1% of initial residues of methyl parathion were found in a soil (clay?) of a field treated with 5.6 kg/ha (Lichtenstein & Schulz, 1964) (see also section 4.1.3). During an incubation study under aerobic conditions, methyl parathion was degraded mainly to CO2 and 4-nitrophenol, and, to a minor extent, to desmethyl parathion (Möllhoff, 1981). Methyl parathion may be degraded in the environment by: a ) hydrolysis to p-nitrophenol and dimethylthiophosphoric acid; or b ) nitro-group reduction to methyl aminoparathion (e.g., Sharmila et al., 1988). Hydrolysis can be both chemical and microbial while nitro-group reduction is essentially microbial. Generally, hydrolysis is the major pathway in nonflooded soil while methyl parathion is degraded mainly by nitro-group reduction in predominantly anaerobic systems, such as flooded soil (Ou et al., 1983; Ou, 1985; Adhya et al., 1987). In a few instances, hydrolysis is the major or only pathway of methyl parathion degradation in soils, even under flooded conditions (Ou, 1985). Adhya et al. (1987) evaluated the influence of different physical and chemical characteristics on the persistence of methyl parathion in 5 tropical soils under flooded and nonflooded conditions. They found that nitro-group reduction was the major pathway of methyl parathion degradation in 4 out of 5 of the soils under flooded conditions, while, in one soil (Sukinda-soil), degradation of methyl parathion proceeded exclusively by hydrolysis, even under flooded conditions. The latter finding was confirmed by Sharmila et al. (1989a). A temperature-dependent shift from nitro-group reduction (at 25 °C) to predominantly hydrolysis (at 35 °C) occurred in a flooded alluvial soil; both pathways were mediated microbially (Sharmila et al., 1988). The addition of yeast extract also influenced the degradation pathway of methyl parathion by bacterial cultures in enriched flooded alluvial and laterite (Sukinda) soils (Sharmila et al., 1989b). Low redox potential in a flooded soil favoured degradation by nitro-group reduction, whereas hydrolysis was concomitant with a more positive potential (Adhya et al., 1981a). Adhya et al. (1981b) reported studies on sulfur-containing anaerobic ecosystems, such as oceanic sediments, which they supposed could serve as a potential sink for pesticides. They found that methyl parathion was decomposed in acid, sulfur-containing soils and soils with a low sulfate content to aminomethyl parathion; however, no decomposition occurred under aerobic conditions. Demethylation could be demonstrated in anaerobic sulfate soils. Evidence for microbial participation was provided by the fact that sterilization of the enriched soil samples increased the stability of methyl parathion in soil (Adhya et al., 1981a). The authors reported a very rapid reduction of the nitro group of methyl parathion by equilibration with a soil incubated with rice straw under flooding. Sterilization of this soil preparation prevented this rapid reduction. The degradation of methyl parathion and its metabolite p-nitrophenol in flooded alluvial soil is given in Table 12. It appeared from this study, that the degradation of the metabolite p-nitrophenol is more rapid than the decomposition of methyl parathion. Table 12. Degradation of methyl parathion and its metabolite p-nitrophenol in flooded alluvial soila Days after methyl µg of compound recovered/20 g of soil parathion addition methyl parathion p-nitrophenol 0 485.3 0 0.5 428.1 trace 1 333.7 120.0 2 219.8 98.6 3 185.6 72.0 6 95.5 0 12 58.2 0 a From: Adhya et al. (1981a). Isolated mixed bacterial cultures from soil utilized methyl parathion and parathion as a sole carbon source (Chaudhry et al., 1988). Pseudomonas sp. was capable of hydrolysing methyl parathion and parathion to p-nitrophenol but needed another carbon source for growth. The optimum pH range for enzymatic hydrolysis by this bacterium was from 7.5 to 9.5. In view of the instability of methyl parathion in alkaline solutions, it is not clear whether the hydrolysis noted was or was not partially due to the pH of the solution rather than wholly due to bacterial action. The thermal optimum was between 35 °C and 40 °C. Flavobacterium sp. culture was able to metabolize p-nitrophenol by degrading it to nitrite and to use it for growth. The DNAs from Pseudomonas sp. and from the mixed culture showed homology with the organophosphate degradation gene from a previously reported parathion-hydrolysing bacterium, Flavobacterium sp. Ou & Sharma (1989) showed that methyl parathion is extensively degraded by a mixed bacterial culture and a Bacillus sp. to its final oxidation products carbon dioxide and water, whilst a Pseudomonas sp. isolated from the mixed culture could degrade the hydrolysis product p-nitrophenol. A Flavobacterium sp. isolated from flooded soil was able to hydrolyse methyl parathion, but a Pseudomonas sp. from flooded soil was not (Adhya et al., 1981c). The transformation of methyl parathion by pure cultures of Flavobacterium sp. followed multiphasic kinetics (Lewis et al., 1985). A different result was described by Arndt et al. (1981) for microorganisms in compost. They added 70 mg of methyl parathion dissolved in 20 ml ethyl acetate to 1.2 kg of grass (40%), apples (23%), potatoes (17%), yoghourt (13%), and bread (7%). After composting this mixture for 7 days, no degradation product of methyl parathion was found. The recovery rate was 95%. The authors concluded that the insecticide could accumulate in the compost under the conditions tested, but it could not be excluded that this result was affected by the ethyl acetate. The concentration of methyl parathion (applied at 0.28 kg/ha) in a lake (Clear Lake, California, USA) dropped from 0.50 µg/litre to 0.28 µg/litre, measured 8 and 48 h, respectively, after treatment (Apperson et al., 1976). After a third application (total 3 X 0.28 kg/ha) the residue level of methyl parathion was 5.4 µg/litre, and 7 days later, 2 µg/litre (Apperson et al., 1976). Eichelberger & Lichtenberg (1971) found that 90% of methyl parathion in river water was degraded during a period of 2 weeks, whereas there was no degradation in distilled water. The latter finding may be pH related, since Cowart et al. (1971) noted 50% hydrolysis of the pesticide after 14 days in distilled water at pH 6. Under field conditions, in the presence of sediment and aquatic plants, degradation is accelerated and persistence is lower. Dortland (1980) showed that persistence decreased by a factor of 2-3 when sediment and plants were added to the aquatic microcosm. When considering the aquatic ecosystem as a whole (which includes adsorption on sediments and adsorption on, and incorporation in, aquatic biota) a fair estimate of the persistence of methyl parathion in the water column seemed to be 2-3 days (Walker, 1978). This value was recorded in microcosm studies and field experiments in both freshwater and estuarine aquatic environments. Predicted half-life values in rivers, ponds, eutrophic lakes, and oligotrophic lakes were reported to be 0.6, 27.3, 28.3, and 151.6 h, respectively (Smith et al., 1978). Methyl parathion was degraded with a half-life of 28 h in sediment collected from a field site and with a half-life of 7 h in microbial mats derived from laboratory mesocosms (Newton et al., 1990). The half-lives of methyl parathion in the water and sediment of a carp pond were 5.7 days and 5.0 days, respectively (initial residues: 3.77 mg/litre in water and 0.52 mg/kg in soil) (Sabharwal & Belsare, 1986). It should be emphasized that the persistence values reported depend not only on the type of biotope but also on the abiotic conditions, i.e., temperature, pH, and salinity, as pointed out, for example, by Badawy & El-Dib (1984). Holm et al. (1983) found in their model ecosystem that the sediment type had no observable effect on the degradation of methyl parathion and that it depended primarily on the communities of microorganisms. These communities and their ability to degrade methyl parathion did not change with different sediment types. The microbial degradation rate constants in an aquatic channel microcosmos ranged from 2.7 X 10-6/s to 6.9 X 10-6/s. This was significantly higher than the rate constants determined for abiotic degradation. Cripe et al. (1987) modified the river die-away test for determining the biodegradability of organic substances and tested the degradation products for their toxicity. Because of their sensitivity, mysids and daphnids were used for testing the toxicity of the degradation products. This test showed a rapid, sediment-mediated biodegradation of methyl parathion. The biodegration rate of methyl parathion was compared in 3 types of test systems composed of sediment and water collected from various estuarine sites (Van Veld & Spain, 1983). Generally, methyl parathion degradation was fastest in intact sediment/water cores, followed by sediment/water shake flasks, and was slowest in water shake flasks. Lewis & Holm (1981) determined the transformation rate of methyl parathion by "aufwuchs" microorganisms, i.e., aquatic microbial growth attached to submerged surfaces or suspended in streamers or mats. "Aufwuchs" fungi, protozoa, and algae did not transform methyl parathion, but bacteria rapidly transformed it. Lewis et al. (1984) examined the effects of microbial community interactions on methyl parathion transformation rates. They found either stimulation or inhibition of bacterial transformation rates in the presence of various cultures, filtrates, or exudates of algae, fungi, or other bacteria. The biotic and abiotic degradation rates of methyl parathion in water and sediment samples over a 3-year period was studied by Pritchard et al. (1987). The aim of their study was to find the reason for the different degradation rates reported for methyl parathion, but the divergences in biodegration could not be assigned to any single factor. The predominant degradation in an aerobic system appears to be the biological hydrolysis, producing p-nitrophenol. Phosphatases are an important group of enzymes involved in the breakdown of methyl parathion (Portier & Meyers, 1982; Portier et al., 1983). A proposed pathway for the breakdown of methyl parathion in aquatic systems is given by Bourquin et al. (1979) in Fig. 1. Methyl parathion is degraded by bacteria in soil, but more slowly by bacteria in water. Crossland et al. (1986) estimated the rate of biodegradation of methyl parathion using a mathematical model. Sorption on sediment was the dominant process for loss of methyl parathion from the water compartment. The rate of biodegradation in sediment (4.0 µmol/litre per h) greatly exceeded that of sorption on sediment (0.02-0.05 µmol/litre per h) and, therefore, the sediment compartment may be considered a sink for methyl parathion. The complete decomposition of methyl parathion into innocuous compounds can be realized by planktonic and attached microorganisms (Lassiter et al., 1986). The metabolite p-nitrophenol can be further metabolized by algae, as reported by Werner & Pawlitz (1978). 4.2.2 Abiotic degradation Data on the abiotic degradation of methyl parathion are presented in Table 13. 188.8.131.52 Photodegradation When exposed to UV radiation or sunlight, methyl parathion undergoes oxidative degradation. The degradation rate constant of methyl parathion sprayed as a film (0.67 µg/cm2) and exposed to 300 nm light was reported to be 46.6 X 10-7/s, corresponding to a half-life of 41.2 h (Chen et al., 1984). In a stationary reactor, the half-life of methyl parathion dissolved in an aqueous solution (pH=7) was 72 min after radiation with a Hg low pressure lamp (at 254 nm) (Hicke & Thiemann, 1987). Methyl parathion has been shown to be one of the most light-sensitive insecticides. Baker & Applegate (1970, 1974) showed photodegradation of methyl parathion using light in the spectral range 300-400 nm (Table 13); methyl paraoxon, the active cholinesterase inhibitor, was produced. Although photodegradation of methyl parathion in the terrestrial compartment of the environment may be important, it plays only a minor role in aquatic media (Env. Res. Lab., 1981). The first-order transformation rate for photolysis upon exposure to daylight fluorescent lamps was low compared to hydrolysis and, in particular, compared to microbial degradation in an aquatic channel microcosm (Holm et al., 1983). The loss of methyl parathion through photolysis was estimated to be 4%. Nevertheless, it seems that sunlight may reduce the half-life of methyl parathion considerably. Schimmel et al. (1983) reported a half-life of 6.3 days for a 1 mg methyl parathion/litre solution exposed to sunlight. In darkness, with the same test conditions, the half-life was 18 days. Like parathion, the photoreaction of methyl parathion was accelerated in the presence of green and blue green algae (Zepp & Schlotzhauer, 1983). Table 13. Abiotic degradation of methyl parathion Transformation Time Experimental conditions Light Initial concentration Conversion References process temp (°C) pH (mg/litre) (%) Hydrolysis in 24 h a 6 0.26 8.8 Cowart et al. (1971) distilled water 7 days a 6 0.26 32.0 Cowart et al. (1971) 14 days a 6 0.26 50.5 Cowart et al. (1971) 21 days a 6 0.26 73.8 Cowart et al. (1971) 28 days a 6 0.26 100 Cowart et al. (1971) Hydrolysis in 31.7 days 10 1-5 a 50 Mühlmann & Schrader distilled water 12.5 h 40 1-5 a 50 (1957) Mühlmann & Schrader (1957) Hydrolysis in 8.4 h 70 6 6 50 Ruzicka et al. (1967) ethanol buffer Hydrolysis in 4 h 37.5 12 a 64-73 Jaglan & Gunther 0.01 M NaOH (1970) Table 13 (continued) Transformation Time Experimental conditions Light Initial concentration Conversion References process temp (°C) pH (mg/litre) (%) UV-degradation 2 h 30 350 nm 0.1 39 Baker & Applegate of pure product 4 h 30 350 nm 0.1 65 (1974) 6 h 30 350 nm 0.1 82 Baker & Applegate 8 h 30 350 nm 0.1 91 (1974) Baker & Applegate (1974) Baker & Applegate (1974) Temperature- 2 h 35 dark 0.1 9 Baker & Applegate degradation of 4 h 35 dark 0.1 8 (1974) pure product 6 h 35 dark 0.1 24 Baker & Applegate 8 h 35 dark 0.1 31 (1974) Baker & Applegate (1974) Baker & Applegate (1974) a No data given. Exposure of methyl parathion to sunlight resulted in the formation of trace levels of O, O, S-trimethyl phosphorothioate and trimethylphosphate (Chukwudebe et al., 1989). According to Sauvegrain (1980), methyl parathion seems to be oxidized by oxidizing agents, i.e., ozone and chlorine. Methyl parathion treatment with ozone eliminated 80-100% of the compound. The oxidation of methyl parathion leads to methyl paraoxon, which is further transformed into p-nitrophenol. 184.108.40.206 Hydrolytic degradation The half-life of methyl parathion in an aqueous solution (20 °C, pH 1-5) was reported to be 175 days (Melnikov, 1971). At a concentration of 0.03 mol/litre (pH 10), sodium perborate greatly accelerated the degradation of methyl parathion (Qian et al., 1985). The half-life in the presence of perborate was 12 min, while the rate was too slow to be measurable when the same concentration of sodium carbonate was added. Badawy & El-Dib (1984) also found that the degradation of methyl parathion occurred much more rapidly under alkaline (pH 8.5) than under neutral (pH 7.0) or acidic (pH 0.5) conditions. The rate of degradation was also positively correlated with salinity. Although chemical hydrolysis occurs in the aquatic environment, this degradation reaction plays only a limited role in the disappearance of methyl parathion. In an aquatic channel microcosm, only 7% of degradation of the pesticide was attributed to chemical hydrolysis (Holm et al., 1983). In a sterile, seawater-sediment system, methyl parathion remained for 7 days whereas, in a corresponding nonsterile system, 100% of the compound was degraded within this period (Env. Res. Lab., 1981). Methyl paraoxon, the more toxic oxygen analogue of methyl parathion is also chemically hydrolysed. According to Jaglan & Gunther (1970), the chemical hydrolysis of methyl paraoxon is much faster than that of methyl parathion, because of the presence of oxygen in the oxon, which makes the phosphorus more susceptible to attack by the hydroxide ion. At pH 8.5 (37.5 °C), approximately 35% of methyl paraoxon was hydrolysed within 16 h compared with about 5% for methyl parathion. The hydrolysis products of methyl parathion and methyl paraoxon are dimethyl phosphorothioic acid or dimethyl phosphoric acid and p-nitrophenol. These compounds are less toxic than the parent compounds, thus hydrolysis is detoxifying (Thuma et al., 1983). Pritchard et al. (1987) reported that there was no biotic degradation of methyl parathion in seawater, i.e., "the rate resulting from the substraction of the sterile rate from the nonsterile rate was not significantly different from zero". Several research groups investigated the binding of methyl parathion on soils as well as the soil catalysed degradation of methyl parathion. Saltzman et al. (1976) and Mingelgrin et al. (1977) analysed the influences of different water contents and cations on the kaolinite-catalysed degradation of methyl parathion; when adsorbed on kaolinite, methyl parathion seems to be more stable than parathion. A concentration of 10% Ca-kaolinite catalysed the degradation of methyl parathion most efficiently. Wolfe et al. (1986) studied the influences of pH and redox transformations on the detoxification of methyl parathion in soils, quantitatively. The disappearence of methyl parathion could be described by first-order kinetics. Amino methyl parathion was identified as a reaction product. Half-lives in the range of a few minutes were measured in strongly reducing sediments, thus, confirming the data of Gambrell et al. (1984). It was suggested that more information about the effect of sediment sorption was needed for further studies on the reaction kinetics. 4.2.3 Bioaccumulation Temporary accumulation (up to 10 days) occurred following an aerial spraying of pine and deciduous forest with methyl parathion (3 kg 20% solution/ha in April and 1 kg 40% solution/ha in September), which led to higher levels of methyl parathion in the tissues of a variety of vertebrates compared with the concentrations in soil, water, and plants (Fedorenko et al., 1981). Takimoto et al. (1984) reported bioaccumulation of methyl parathion in killifish (Oryzias latipes). Bioaccumulation factors of 88-fold (postlarva) to 540-fold (female adult) were found in the killifish. Residues in the bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus), exposed to methyl parathion treatments in a lake, varied from 11 to 110 µg/kg, corresponding to bioaccumulation factors of 28-39 (Apperson et al., 1976). Sabharwal & Belsare (1986) added 4 mg methyl parathion/litre to the water of a carp-rearing pond and measured the methyl parathion concentrations in the water, soil, macrophytes, and carps over a period of 35 days. The methyl parathion limits of detection in water, soil, macrophytes, and fish were 0.0066, 0.12, 0.0478, and 0.0746 mg/kg respectively (see Table 14). There was an accumulation of methyl parathion in the soil, macrophytes, and fish, whereas the compound degraded immediately in water. The bioaccumulation in the carp peaked at 3 days. Table 14. The persistence of methyl parathion in water, soil, macrophytes, and fisha Time (days) methyl parathion concentration (mg/kg) water soil macrophytes fish 0 3.77 0.52 1.2 0.52 1 3.15 2.28 14.41 10.26 3 2.16 1.5 11.73 26.17 7 1.50 - 8.98 11.74 14 0.60 - 4.16 5.67 21 0.28 - 2.24 2.06 28 ndb ndb 1.42 0.83 35 ndb ndb 0.73 0.48 a From: Sabharwal & Belsare (1986). b nd = not detectable. Using a mean Kow value of 2.55, and on the basis of the log Kow/log bio-concentration regression curve for fathead minnows, the estimated bioconcentration factor was reported to be 22 (Env. Res. Lab., 1981). According to Zitko & McLeese (1980), the expected bioconcentration factor in aquatic biota for methyl parathion is estimated to be 20. Crossland & Bennett (1984) using a range of published log Kow values estimated that bioaccumulation factors would be between 2.5 and 84. Accumulation of methyl parathion does not occur in the blood of mammals. After ingestion, it is rapidly absorbed and the blood concentration reaches a maximum 1-3 h following ingestion and, thereafter, decreases. Although a significant portion of methyl parathion is found in the bile, it is present in all organs (see also section 6.2). 4.3 Interaction with other physical, chemical, and biological factors Methyl parathion shows interactions with the following substances: adrenocorticoids, anaesthetics, tricyclic antidepressive agents, antihistamines, atropine, barbiturates, clofibrate, colistimethate, corticosteroids, curare, decamethonium, dexpanthenol, fluorophosphate, hexamethonium, kanamycin, morphine, muscle relaxants, anticholinesterases, neomycin, parasympathomimetics, phenothiazines, polymyxin, pralidoxime, procainamide, streptomycin, succinylcholin, sympathomimetics, d-tubocurarine (Martin, 1978). A significant increase in the toxicity of oxygen analogues of organophosphorus insecticides to house flies was observed following treatment with polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) (Aroclor 1248) (Fuhremann, 1980). Detergents increased the hydrolysis of organophosphates, such as methyl parathion (Peterka & Cerna, 1988). Yang & Sun (1977) found an inversely proportional correlation between fish toxicity and the partition coefficient of different insecticides, including methyl parathion. DEF ( S,S,S-tributyltrithiophosphate), a defoliant, enhanced the toxic effect of methyl parathion in the fish (Gambusia affinis) (Fabacher, 1976). 4.4 Ultimate fate following use The ultimate fate of methyl parathion depends on the degradation pathways. The most important one is chemical as well as biological hydrolysis; the others are oxidative desulfurisation, nitro reduction, and photodegradation. Important degradation products are methyl paraoxon, dimethylthiophosphoric acid, dimethylphosphoric acid, and p-nitrophenol. 5. ENVIRONMENTAL LEVELS AND HUMAN EXPOSURE 5.1 Environmental levels 5.1.1 Air In a pilot study, Stanley et al. (1971) measured methyl parathion concentrations of up to 129 ng/m3 in air samples collected in the USA (Stoneville). The technique used for air sampling was that of Miles et al. (1970). In Tennessee, USA, average hourly concentrations of methyl parathion in air were < 0.57 ng/m3 (maximum, 2.9 ng/m3) at a site located one mile south-east of a methyl parathion plant and one mile west of a plant producing the nematocide ethoprophos ( O-ethyl- S,S-dipropyl phosphorodithioate), and < 0.64 ng/m3 (maximum, 5.1 ng/m3) at another site located one mile north of a methyl parathion plant. Particulate samples collected from the 2 sites contained < 0.086 ng methyl parathion/m3 (Foster, 1974). In the USA, maximum atmospheric levels were detected of 29.6 ng/m3 in Alabama, 5.4 ng/m3 in Florida, and 129 ng/m3 in Mississippi (Midwest Research Institute, 1975). Methyl parathion was found in air samples in the Mississippi Delta, one of the highest pesticide usage areas in the USA, because of the intensive cotton production, at a maximal concentration of 2060 ng/m3 (Arthur et al., 1976). The average monthly concentrations of methyl parathion peaked in August or September with levels varying from 111.7 ng/m3 (September 1972) to 791.1 ng/m3 (September 1973). In another study, airborne residues of methyl parathion and methyl paraoxon were determined after the use of methyl parathion on rice in the Sacramento valley in California, USA (Seiber et al., 1989). Sampling was conducted on the roof tops of public buildings in 4 towns in 2 counties where methyl parathion was used in significant quantities, and in a reference area where no use occurred. Daily maximum average concentrations were 25.7 ng/m3 for methyl parathion and 3.1 ng/m3 for methyl paraoxon. The range in averages for all sites in the vicinity of usage during springtime 1986 was 0.2-6.2 ng/m3 for methyl parathion and < 0.5-0.8 ng/m3 for methyl paraoxon. With one exception, the background samples did not show any methyl parathion above the detection limit. Methyl parathion and methyl paraoxon concentrations measured in the condensate from coastal fog near Monterey (California, USA) ranged between 0.046 and 0.43 µg/litre and between 0.039 and 0.49 µg/litre, respectively. The oxon to thion ratios were 0.28-2.6, and thion to oxon conversion appeared to take place during atmospheric transport from agricultural to the nonagricultural areas (Schomburg et al., 1991). In the Kalinin District, Tashkent Province, the Uzbek SSR (USSR), during July and August, the concentrations of methyl parathion in the air after spraying with 30% emulsion, measured at 500, 750, and 1000 m from the place of the treatment, were 0.055- 0.08, 0.01-0.02, and 0-0.008 mg/m3, respectively (Akhmedov, 1968). Tessari & Spencer (1971) analysed indoor and outdoor air samples, collected monthly for a year, at the homes of families where the head of the household was occupationally exposed to pesticides. A nylon chiffon cloth screen was exposed to the atmosphere for 5 days and the absorbed pesticides were extracted and analysed using a column chromatography method. The authors found methyl parathion in 13 out of 52 samples, at an average concentration of 1.04 µg/m3. The range was 0.04-9.4 µg/m3. The values obtained from outdoor sampling were much smaller, 3 out of 53 samples containing 0.35 µg methyl parathion/m3 with a range of 0.15-0.71 µg/m3. 5.1.2 Water Methyl parathion concentrations of up to 0.23 µg/litre were found in selected Western streams of the USA in 1968-71 (Schulze et al., 1973). In 1970, methyl parathion was detected in 3 out of 18 surface drain effluent water samples in California, USA, at concentrations of 10-190 ng/kg, and, in 8 out of 60 subsurface drain effluent water samples, at concentrations of 10-170 ng/kg (Midwest Research Institute, 1975). In water samples from 10 sites in the Cape Fear River Basin in North Carolina, USA, taken monthly between July 1974 and June 1975 (except October), maximum concentrations of methyl parathion in dissolved fractions and in particulate-associated fractions were 468 ng/litre and 123 ng/litre, respectively (Pfaender et al., 1977). Methyl parathion was detected in waste water from a parathion production plant in the USA at levels of 2.0 mg/litre in pre-treatment water and < 0.004 mg/litre in post-treatment water (Marcus et al., 1978). Methyl parathion residues in major Mississippi stream systems (USA), monitored during 1972-73, ranged between 0.08 and 0.46 µg/litre (Leard et al., 1980). In one station at the Negro River Basin (Argentina), methyl parathion was detected at a concentration of 0.034 µg/litre in March 1986, which is the end of the summer season in South America (Natale et al., 1988). In a study on the Ionnina basin and Kalamas river (Greece), from September 1984 to October 1985, a seasonal fluctuation was found in the concentration of methyl parathion, with a maximum during the summer and a minimum during the winter (Albanis et al., 1986). The mean concentration in the lake Pamvotis (Greece) was 7.7 ng methyl parathion/litre in July. The natural outlet of the lake is the Kalamas River, where a maximum concentration of 32 ng methyl parathion/litre was found. With the exception of the river, the other analyses showed much lower concentrations of methyl parathion. The results of this study show very clearly the seasonal influence of the application of this pesticide on natural water concentrations. Normally, the methyl parathion concentration in the River Rhine is below the limit of detection and the Sandoz accident on 1 November 1987 did not affect the wells of the waterworks. A maximum value measured in the Rhine during the second half of 1986 was higher (< 0.05 mg/m3) than that following this accident (Winter & Lindner, 1987). Methyl parathion was detected in Hungarian surface waters only once between 1977 and 1986 (concentration not given), which corresponded to a sampling frequency of 0.14% (Csernatoni et al., 1988). 5.1.3 Soil In 1969, 76 samples of onions and the soils in which they had been grown were collected in the 10 major onion-producing states of the USA for analysis of the pesticide residues. The limit of quantification of methyl parathion was 0.01 mg/kg. Methyl parathion was found in a range of 0.09-1.9 mg/kg in 11.8% of the soil samples. No residues were detected in the onion samples (Wiersma et al., 1972). Methyl parathion was found at levels of 0.09-1.90 mg/kg in soil samples from onion-producing States in the USA (Midwest Research Institute, 1975). In cropland soil (South Dakota, USA), the concentration of methyl parathion was 0.01 mg/kg soil (Carey et al., 1979). 5.1.4 Food Renvall et al. (1975) reported pesticide analyses of fruits and vegetables on the Swedish market from July 1967 to April 1973. Methyl parathion belonged to the most frequently occurring pesticides with a rate of 6%. Levels in 4 out of 207 oranges analysed, 1 out of 37 lemons, 4 out of 69 grapefruits, and, 2 out of 29 clementines or mandarins exceeded 0.11 mg/kg. In a more recent study, in the Swedish monitoring programme during the period 1981-84, methyl parathion was found in apples, celery, grapes, lemons, lettuce, limes, mandarins, oranges, pears, and plums. One out of 74 celeries analysed (imported), 1 out of 238 lemons (imported), 1 out of 248 lettuces (domestic), 5 out of 421 mandarins (imported), and, 8 out of 917 oranges (imported) exceeded the Swedish maximum residue limits of 0.1-0.5 mg methyl parathion/kg (Andersson, 1986). In a study on the presence of organophosphorus insecticide residues in Mexican food, methyl parathion residues were found in market samples of avocados, rice, strawberries, and tomatoes, with respectively 6, 4, 3, and 5 positive samples out of 10. The average concentrations were 0.3, 0.8, 0.5, and 0.5 mg/kg, respectively (Albert et al., 1979). A report on pesticide residues in the United Kingdom (1982-85) gave a residue level for methyl parathion in lemons of 0.3 mg/kg (MAFF, 1986). In a more recent report, no methyl parathion was found in cooking apples and in imported apples with a reporting limit of determination of 0.1 mg/kg; however, a concentration of 0.08 mg methyl parathion/kg was found in one sample of lemons from Spain (MAFF, 1990). Methyl parathion was detected in citrus fruits in France at levels of 0.003-1.25 mg/kg (Mestres et al., 1977). Lamontagne (1978) found methyl parathion in concentrations of 0.311 mg/kg in fruit and 0.87-2.12 mg/kg in greenhouse plants in France. Branca & Quaglino (1988) found methyl parathion at a residue level of 0.036 mg/kg in one out of 34 samples of French potatoes imported into Italy. Pesticide residue levels were analysed during 1968-69 in samples of ready-to-eat foods from 30 markets in 24 different cities with populations of between 50 000 and more than 1 000 000 in the USA. The limit of determination was 0.05 mg/kg. Methyl parathion was found infrequently (1 X Boston, 1 X Los Angeles, 2 X Minneapolis) in concentrations of 0.008, traces, 0.001, and 0.025 mg/kg in leafy vegetables and 0.033 mg/kg in grain (Boston) (Corneliussen, 1970). From June 1971 to July 1972, methyl parathion was detected in 7 out of 420 samples of ready-to-eat foods. The concentrations found in leafy vegetables ranged from a trace to 0.010 mg/kg. In one sample of fruit (type not given), a concentration of 0.007 mg/kg was found (Boston) (Manske & Johnson, 1975). In the report of the Food and Drug Administration, 5 samples of leafy vegetables containing methyl parathion residues are mentioned. The concentrations ranged from a trace to 0.003 mg/kg (Johnson & Manske, 1976). In "market-basket" surveys conducted by the US Food and Drug Administration in 1966-69, methyl parathion was detected in leafy and stem vegetables at levels of 0-2.00 mg/kg, and, in root vegetables, at levels of 0-1.0 mg/kg (Midwest Research Institute, 1975). Johnson et al. (1981) did not find any methyl parathion in infant and toddler Total Diet Studies (TDS) in the USA in 1975-76. In the adult TDS in the USA in 1973-74, trace residue levels were found in leafy vegetables, but none in fruit (Manske & Johnson, 1977). "Dislodgable" methyl parathion residues were found on sweet corn in the USA at levels of 0-0.14 µg/cm2, one and two days after application of the pesticide (Wicker et al., 1979). Soybeans analysed in 1979 showed levels of 1-40 mg methyl parathion/kg and soybean forage analysed at intervals of 1-14 days after treatment, 0.3-6.6 mg methyl parathion/kg. Levels of 0.1-0.3 mg methyl parathion/kg were measured in 12 samples of cottonseed (FAO, 1985). Samples of standing agricultural crops were analysed in 1971 during the National Pesticide Monitoring Programme in the USA (Carey et al., 1978). Levels of methyl parathion detected in samples of alfalfa, field orn (kernels), cotton, cotton stalks, and mixed hay ranged from 0.02 to 4.57 mg/kg dry weight. During a TDS in Canada in 1972, Smith et al. (1975) found methyl parathion residues in leafy vegetables from Winnipeg at an average level of 0.012 mg/kg. In a TDS in New Zealand during 1971-73, methyl parathion was found in one sample of leafy vegetables at a level of 0.15 mg/kg in 1973, in one sample of root vegetables at the level of 0.26 mg/kg in 1972, and in 4 samples of citrus fruit at an average level of 0.20 mg/kg and a maximum level of 1.4 mg/kg during each of the years 1971-73. In 1971, 3 samples of pip fruit contained, on average, 0.03 mg/kg, and, in 1972, one sample of stone fruit contained 0.25 mg/kg. Some of these figures exceeded the New Zealand tolerances (Love et al., 1974). In 1974, methyl parathion was detected at levels of 0.003-0.007 mg/kg in fruit and 0.002-0.008 mg/kg in tinned food from Auckland and Wellington, New Zealand (Dick et al., 1978). The loss of methyl parathion in food during heating and storage was confirmed by Elkins et al. (1972). The samples were analysed before, and after, standardized heat treatment. Spinach and apricots were fortified separately with methyl parathion. The spinach samples were heated for 66 min at 122 °C and the apricot samples were heated for 50 min at 103 °C. The initial concentration of methyl parathion in the spinach samples was 0.88 mg/kg. It disappeared completely after heating. The methyl parathion level in the apricot samples was 0.85 mg/kg, but this decreased to 46% of this level after heating. The detection limit was less than 0.005 mg/kg. A further decomposition can be expected during the storage of preserved food. Generally, methyl parathion residues in fruit decomposed very rapidly, except in the waxy skin of apples and in the oil vessels of olives (Stoll, 1982). Rippel et al. (1970) found remarkable differences in the degradation of methyl parathion in packaged citrus juice, depending on the kind of package surface. The rate of decrease of the methyl parathion residues was insignificant in glass containers. It was substantially higher in packages with tin-layer surfaces than in packages with painted protective surfaces, since the tin layers reduced the nitro group of the methyl parathion. 5.1.5 Terrestrial and aquatic organisms Methyl parathion is rapidly metabolized in most organisms, resulting in low bioconcentration factors after acute exposure. There are few studies of residues of methyl parathion in organisms in the environment, but those conducted have consistently shown low methyl parathion residues. Methyl parathion was detected in tissue samples from estuarine fish at a mean level of 47 µg/kg (Butler & Schutzmann, 1978). It has been detected at a concentration of 59 µg/kg in the ovaries of spotted sea trout (Cynoscion nebulosus), collected in Texas, USA (Midwest Research Institute, 1975). Methyl parathion was detected in 34 out of 55 suspectedly poisoned apiaries examined in Connecticut (USA) in 1983-85 (Anderson & Wojtas, 1986). Concentrations of methyl parathion found in dead bees and in brood comb ranged from 0.04 to 5.8 mg/kg. 5.2 General population exposure The general population can come into contact with methyl parathion via air, water, or food. Average methyl parathion intake from food in the USA during 1988 was estimated to range from 0.1 to 0.2 ng/kg per day in 3 different age groups (FDA, 1989). Draper & Street (1981) estimated that a 70-kg male living in a residence adjacent (50 yards) to an alfalfa field sprayed with methyl parathion at a rate of 0.19 kg a.i./ha would be exposed to a total dermal dose of 0.38 mg. Within a pesticide monitoring programme in the USA, based on the analysis of 6990 samples collected from the general population via the National Center for Health Statistics 1976-80, para-nitrophenol as an indicator for exposure to methyl and ethyl parathion was detected in 2.4% of urine samples from 12 to 74-year-old persons (Carey & Kutz, 1985). 5.3 Occupational exposure during manufacture, formulation, or use There is a special risk for farm workers, since incidents of poisonings and illnesses during the mixing, loading, and application of methyl parathion have been reported. Exposure may also occur during the cleaning and repair of equipment and during early re-entry into fields. According to NIOSH (1976), 150 000 workers in the USA (field workers, aerial application personnel, mixer and blender operators, tractor tank loaders, ground applicator vehicle drivers, field inspectors, and warehouse personnel) are conceivably exposed to methyl parathion. A maximum air concentration of methyl parathion was estimated to be 1.77 µg/m3. The exposure to methyl parathion was estimated by Hayes (1971) for workers checking cotton for insect damage as 0.7 mg/h via skin contact and < 0.01 mg/h through inhalation (NIOSH, 1976). Davis et al. (1981) estimated that workers in apple orchards sprayed with methyl parathion would be exposed to dermal doses ranging from 0.055 mg to 3.1 mg, with the amount varying with time after spraying and the formulation of the pesticide. Two field studies were carried out by Kummer & Van Sittert (1986) to evaluate the health risk for the farm workers. In a number of cases, the men involved in hand-held ULV-spraying wore very little clothing and did not stop spraying, when it was too windy. Another possible contamination risk was the filling of bottles from larger (25-litre) containers, and the repairing and cleaning of the equipment with unprotected hands. However, no signs of acute poisoning could be observed in any of the persons involved in these studies. The urine was collected in spot samples in one of the studies and in 24-h samples in the other. Methyl parathion absorption could be verified from its metabolites in the spraymen's urine. Average levels of urinary nitrophenol (mg/g creatinine) for 6 supervisors and 2 groups of sprayers were reported to be 0.08 (range of 0.05-0.20), 0.38 (range of 0.04-1.38), and 0.13 (range of 0.06-0.44), respectively. An intake of 0.4-13 mg methyl parathion was calculated from the excreted p-nitrophenol. Since investigations showed that clothing worn by agricultural workers became contaminated with methyl parathion following application and that the laundering of contaminated clothing with uncontaminated fabrics resulted in the transfer of the methyl parathion residue, recommendations were made that contaminated fabrics should not be washed with regular family laundry. Suggestions for the procedure of laundering were made by Easley et al. (1981) and Laughlin et al. (1981). The most effective procedure was using a pre-rinse programme and a detergent together with sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) as a bleach. Laughlin & Gold (1989) discussed further aspects of laundering protective clothing contaminated with methyl parathion. Fluorocarbon soil repellent finishes on such protective clothing decrease pesticide absorption, but may hinder pesticide removal in laundering. Storage of laundered garments at 20 °C with air flow and/or at high humidity levels was recommended to dissipate residues of methyl parathion. Ware et al. (1974b) suggested that serum insecticide levels, serum and red blood cell cholinesterase activities, and urinary excretion of p-nitrophenol should be investigated, because they are more effective for evaluating the possible potential poisoning hazard than the analysis of skin and clothing contamination. The safety of re-entering cotton fields 24 h following application of methyl parathion was tested. Methyl parathion was applied at 1.12 kg a.i./ha. During the application, the temperature ranged from 30 to 38 °C. The foliar residues decreased from 1.6 mg/m2, 24 h following methyl parathion treatment, to 0.9 mg/m2, 6 h later. No methyl parathion was detectable in the serum of the volunteers. The 48-h urinary excretion of p-nitrophenol ranged from 0.15 to 1.20 mg. Serum cholinesterase levels varied within normal intervals whereas the red blood cell cholinesterase levels showed a temporary, but not pronounced, depression of about 5-7%. The amounts of methyl parathion and methyl paraoxon extracted from clothing and hand surfaces are shown in Table 15. During the working period, the mean air concentration was 0.2 ng methyl parathion/litre, of which, 1.2 µg methyl parathion was inhaled over 5 h. From all these data, it was concluded that a 24-h interval is safe for methyl parathion in this form of application. Munn et al. (1985) collected human exposure samples from workers and dependants wearing nylon gloves, as well as environmental samples, during the onion harvest season of 1982 in Colorado, USA. Children in agricultural settings normally accompany their parents to the fields, as part of a family unit, the young children playing in this environment and older children helping their parents in the fields. Munn et al. (1985) recorded the length of time the gloves were worn, and the age and sex of the participants. No association between age and methyl parathion levels was found. The urine samples collected prior to their leaving the field did not contain detectable levels of methyl parathion. This could be because the nylon gloves reduced the absorption of organophosphate residues by about 90%. Table 15. Extracted residues of methyl parathion and methyl paraoxon following a 5-h working perioda Extract from: Methyl parathion Methyl paraoxon residue (mg) residue (mg) Hands 0.2 0.5 Shirts 0.2 4.0 mep.5s 1.7 39.0 a From: Ware et al. (1974b). 6. KINETICS AND METABOLISM 6.1 Absorption Methyl parathion can be absorbed through the digestive tract, the skin, and the respiratory tract (White-Stevens, 1971). The primary routes of exposure are via skin contact with contaminated plants or material, and via inhalation. Severe accidental intoxications of humans have occurred. The absorption of methyl parathion from the digestive tract is rapid, and it appears in the bloodstream immediately after oral intake. Studies on guinea-pigs were performed to analyse the rate of absorption of radioactive labelled (32P) methyl parathion. One minute after dosage, it could be detected in various organs. The maximum level was found 1-2 h after treatment. The liver showed a remarkably high concentration (Gar et al., 1958). Miyamoto et al. (1963) administered 50 mg 32P-labelled methyl parathion/kg body weight to guinea-pigs or 1.5 mg/kg body weight to rats, by stomach tube. Maximum concentrations in the blood and brain were reached 1-3 h after treatment. An oral dose of 50 mg methyl parathion/kg resulted in no detectable levels of methyl parathion in either the brain or blood after 3 min, but, after 6-8 min, at which point lethal effects occurred, levels of methyl parathion increased to 182 ng/ml in plasma and to 137 ng/g in brain (Yamamoto et al., 1981). 6.2 Distribution Accumulation of methyl parathion was observed in tissues. The highest concentrations were found in the lung and the liver (NRC, 1977). Transplacental transport of methyl parathion is discussed in section 8.5. Total radioactive residues recovered in the 12 tissues analysed (excluding the gastrointestinal tract) from rats given a single oral dose of 5 mg C-14-methyl parathion/kg body weight were about 11% of the administered dose, 1 h after treatment, declining to 0.3% at 24 h, about 0.1% at 48 h, and to only 0.04%, 6 days later. The kidney had the highest relative activity up to 8 h after treatment. The 14C-activity in the plasma was initially about 5 times higher than that in the erythrocytes. However, from day 2 to day 6 after dosing, the 14C-activity in the erythrocytes was greater than that in plasma and remained constant (Weber et al., 1979). Sultatos et al. (1990) measured the partition coefficient for methyl parathion between mouse liver and blood by either equilibrium dialysis or a perfusion technique and obtained values of 9.5 and 16.4 respectively. In a kinetic study on mongrel dogs of both sexes, Braeckman et al. (1980) found a rapid decrease in serum methyl parathion concentrations during the first few hours. The authors injected methyl parathion intravenously in doses of 1, 3, 10, and 30 mg/kg body weight. The dogs were pretreated with 1-5 mg atropine/kg body weight, 10 min before injecting methyl parathion. The blood samples were taken for up to 160 h. Besides quantifying serum levels of methyl parathion, the authors also measured serum cholinesterase activity at the 2 highest concentrations of methyl parathion. The determination of serum methyl parathion concentrations was performed according to De Potter et al. (1978). The cholinesterase activity decreased within 30 min to its lowest value, i.e., 40% of the normal level in dogs receiving 10 mg/kg body weight and 25% in dogs receiving 30 mg/kg. The first rapid fall in the methyl parathion concentration after injection was due to distribution and elimination. A slower decrease in serum methyl parathion concentrations at higher doses was the result of dee compartment linear kinetics. This is in line with observations of Tilstone et al. (1979), who found a rebound effect after a haemoperfusion. 6.3 Metabolic transformation Organic nitro compounds, orally administered to ruminants, will undergo reduction of the nitro groups to amino groups. This reaction takes place in the rumen (Karlog et al., 1978). The metabolism of methyl parathion in rodents is illustrated in Fig. 2. Because of the importance of a first pass through the liver for the metabolism of methyl parathion, there is a distinct difference between the oral and intravenous toxicity (Morgan et al., 1977; Braeckman et al., 1983). Conversion of methyl parathion to its toxic metabolite, methyl paraoxon, may occur within minutes following oral administration (Yamamoto et al., 1983). Mouse liver, perfused with methyl parathion, released the toxic metabolite methyl paraoxon into the effluate. Mouse whole blood rapidly detoxified the methyl paraoxon formed (Sultatos, 1987). A reduction of the cellular concentration of reduced glutathione (GSH) influences mitosis, mobility, and other GSH-dependent cell functions. Glutathione S-transferases are mainly located in the cytosol and display overlapping substrate specificity. They also show peroxidase activity and prevent the peroxidation of membrane lipids. The interaction of methyl parathion with GSH or with the glutathione S-transferases therefore is important not only for the non-oxidative detoxification of the insecticide, but also for species-selective toxicity, and the development of resistance. Placental and fetal human glutathione S-transferase catalysed the dealkylation of methyl parathion exclusively to demethyl parathion via O-dealkylation (Radulovic et al., 1986; 1987). Only after the metabolic formation of methyl paraoxon by liver microsomal oxidases does the substance become toxic. Therefore, this is an activation reaction. Methyl parathion and methyl paraoxon are mainly detoxified by conjugation with GSH (Hennighausen, 1984). Detoxification is achieved by degradation reactions, that involve either demethylation or dearylation. The resulting desmethyl compounds and dimethyl phosphoric acids are essentially nontoxic (NRC, 1977). These detoxification reactions are due to the glutathione-dependent alkyl and aryl transferases; the reaction products are O-methyl- O-p-nitrophenyl phosphorothioate (or O-methyl- O-p-nitrophenyl phosphate) or dimethyl phosphorothioic acid (or dimethyl phosphoric acid) and p-nitrophenol. In addition, hydrolysis of methylparaoxon by tissue arylesterases may occur. Thus, it is possible to follow an exposure to methyl parathion by measuring the urinary excretion of p-nitrophenol (Benke & Murphy, 1975). However, prior depletion of glutathione by acetaminophen (Costa & Murphy, 1984) or diethyl maleate (Sultatos & Woods, 1988) has little effect on the toxicity of methyl parathion in the mouse, indicating that perhaps glutathione does not play a significant role in the detoxification of methyl parathion. The amount of the active toxic compound (methyl paraoxon) that will be produced after exposure to methyl parathion, depends on the kinetics of the oxidation of methyl parathion and on the kinetics of the detoxification reactions. Dealkylation is important at high dosages (Plapp & Casida, 1958). This enzyme system was found in the supernatant of the liver homogenate. The main metabolites were demethyl parathion (80%) and demethyl paraoxon (Fukami & Shihido, 1963; Shihido & Fukami, 1963). The same major metabolites were generated when rat liver microsomes metabolized methyl parathion: demethyl paraoxon, methyl paraoxon, i.e., dimethyl phosphate, dimethyl phosphorothioate, and p-nitrophenol. When rats were treated with methyl parathion, dimethyl phosphoric acid was excreted in the urine together with O-methyl and O,O-dimethyl paraoxon (Menzie, 1974). Adult rats have an increasing capacity to metabolize the oxygen analogue by both oxidative and hydrolytic pathways (Benke & Murphy, 1975). Willems et al. (1980) calculated the high serum clearance of methyl parathion from their intravenous studies on dogs to be 2.1 litre/kg per h. Malaysian prawns (Macrobrachium rosenbergii) as well as ridgeback prawns (Sicyonia ingentis) decomposed methyl parathion readily to p-nitrophenol and p-nitrophenyl conjugates. The dominant way of detoxification was the formation of ß-glycosides and sulfate esters (Foster & Crosby, 1987). The metabolism of methyl parathion in humans is similar to that reported in experimental animals (Fig. 3) (Benke & Murphy, 1975; Morgan et al., 1977). The liver is the primary organ for detoxification and metabolism (Nakatsugawa et al., 1968, 1969). The main metabolites recovered from urine following administration of methyl parathion to human subjects were also p-nitrophenol and dimethyl phosphate. Eight hours after application, p-nitrophenol excretion was nearly complete. Methyl paraoxon was hydrolysed to dimethyl phosphate and an amount representing 12% of the administered dose was excreted. Its excretion was more protracted than that of p-nitrophenol (Morgan et al., 1977). Rao & McKinley (1969) found remarkable differences in the rates of metabolism of methyl parathion by liver homogenates from male and female chickens. The rate of the oxidative desulfurating system of the male liver homogenates was substantially higher than that of the homogenates of female chicken livers; however, the rates of the demethylating system showed no differences. Also no sexually determined differences of the oxidative or the demethylating system were found in the liver homogenates of rats, guinea-pigs, or monkeys. 6.4 Elimination and excretion in expired air, faeces, urine After an oral dose of 32P-methyl parathion to mice (17 mg/kg), 75% of the radioactivity was found after 72 h as metabolites in the urine and up to 10% was eliminated in the faeces (Hollingworth et al., 1967). In male rats, treated with a single oral dose of 14C-methyl parathion (benzene ring-labelled) at 0.1, 1 or 5 mg/kg body weight and in female rats given a single oral dose of 1 mg/kg body weight, over 99% of the administered dose was eliminated in the urine and the faeces within 48 h. Elimination in the faeces accounted for only 5-7% after 1 or 5 mg/kg body weight, but amounted to about 20% after 0.1 mg/kg body weight Male rats treated with an intravenous dose of 1 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight eliminated about 99% of the administered radioactivity in the urine within 48 h, and approximately 1% of the dose in the faeces (Table 16, Weber et al., 1979). Table 16. Elimination of 14C-labelled methyl parathion in ratsa,b Doses Route of No. of Urine Faeces Balance (mg/kg) administration rats (%) (%) (%) 0.1 oral 5 79.8±11 19.4±5. 99.2 3 1 oral 4 93.6±2.6 6.3±1.1 99.9 1 iv 5 99.0±3.8 0.8±0.1 99.8 1 oral 4 93.3±5.1 6.6±2.7 99.9 5 oral 5 94.7±6.0 5.1±0.5 99.8 a Adapted from: Weber et al. (1979). b iv = intravenously. The kinetics of the toxic metabolite of methyl parathion, methyl paraoxon, were studied in conscious dogs (De Schryver et al., 1987). Thirty min before performing the test, the dogs received atropine as protection against intoxication. Methyl paraoxon was administered intravenously (2.5 mg/kg body weight) or orally (15 mg/kg body weight). The distribution of an intravenous dose was very fast. The elimination was fitted by using a one-compartment model. The average half-life was determined to be 9.7 min, the average volume of distribution 1.76 litre/kg, and the average plasma clearance 126 ml/kg per min. Within 3-16 min, the maximal plasma concentration (927-2905 µg/litre) was reached following oral application. The bioavailability ranged from 5 to 71%. The hepatic extraction in anaesthetized dogs varied at a high level of 70-92%. From comparison of the urinary excretion as p-nitrophenol after intravenous (87 and 97%) and oral (63 and 60%) administration of methylparaoxon, the gastrointestinal absorption seemed to be about 60%. It was assumed, that the kinetics were linear in this dose range. The concentration of the main metabolites paranitrophenol (PNP) and dimethylphosphate (DMP) in the urine of 4 human volunteers, following 2 days of ingestion of 2 or 4 mg methyl parathion, is shown in Table 17. Unmetabolized traces of methyl parathion were also found in the urine, which was collected after 4-, 8-, and 24-h (Morgan et al., 1977). The urinary excretion of nitrophenol was 60% within 4 h, 86% within 8 h, and approximately 100% within 24 h following ingestion. Table 17 shows the dependence of urinary metabolite excretion on methyl parathion dosage. Table 17. p-Nitrophenol (PNP) and dimethylphosphate (DMP) concentrations in 24-h urine samples collected from human volunteers following administration of 2 or 4 mg methyl parathiona PNP DMP mean range mean range a) 2 mg methyl parathion urinary 0.13 0.08-0.20 0.06 0.02-0.11 concentration (mg/litre) 24-h excretion (mg) 0.29 0.14-0.43 0.12 0.07-0.16 excretion per g 0.16 0.10-0.23 0.06 0.03-0.10 creatinine (mg/g) b) 4 mg methyl parathion urinary 0.34 0.16-0.61 0.14 0.05-0.23 concentration (mg/litre) 24-h excretion (mg) 0.58 0.34-0.88 0.23 0.12-0.41 excretion per g 0.31 0.15-0.42 0.13 0.06-0.20 creatinine (mg/g) a Adapted from: Morgan et al. (1977). 6.5 Retention and turnover Braeckman et al. (1980) injected 10 mg methyl parathion per kg body weight intravenously into dogs, recorded the uptake of methyl parathion, and determined a harmonic mean terminal half-life of 7.2 h. Five hours after the injection, the concentration decreased to 30% of the initial value. Primarily, the peripheral body compartments contained this residual methyl parathion. The excretion was completed within 35 h. The velocity of the excretion of the main metabolites after oral or intravenous application was similar. However, the bioavaibility after oral intake was reduced by first-pass extraction by the liver compared with the intravenous application. Methyl parathion was shown to bind to a great extent (90%) to plasma proteins in both dogs and humans (Braeckman et al., 1983). 7. EFFECTS ON ORGANISMS IN THE ENVIRONMENT 7.1 Microorganisms 7.1.1 Bacteria and fungi Soil concentrations of methyl parathion of 5 mg/kg or more were found to reduce microbial reductive potential (Reddy & Gambrell, 1985). In biotests for sanitary control of water samples, growth inhibition of Escherichia coli by several toxicants was studied in a liquid medium (Vogel-Bonner medium, supplemented with thymine and glucose at 37 °C). The minimal concentrations of methyl parathion that significantly increased growth rate and doubling time of E. coli were reported to be 62.5 mg/litre and 125 mg/litre; the bacterium used the compound as a carbon source (Espigares et al., 1990). Portier et al. (1983) tested the effects of methyl parathion (1.5 or 5 mg/litre) on the reproduction of aquatic microorganisms from drainage basins in laboratory experiments, using static or flow-through approaches (28 °C; pH 7.5; 22%; 22 days; or 28 °C; pH 7.2; 0%; 24 days). In bacteria and Actinomycetes , methyl parathion had a positive effect on the development. In fungi and yeasts, slight negative effects were found that were related to the test conditions rather than to the toxicant concentration. In general, a concentration of up to 5 mg methyl parathion/litre resulted in increased activity and biomass production in a microbial community, being used as carbon source by the microorganisms (Portier & Meiers, 1982). Bhunia et al. (1991) cultured Nostoc muscorum , a blue-green alga (Cyanobacterium), which is a major nitrogen-fixing organism in tropical soil, with methyl parathion at 5, 10, 20, or 35 mg/litre. Only the highest concentration significantly reduced the growth of the cells in culture. However, the chlorophyll- a contents of the cultures were marginally reduced at 5 mg methyl parathion/litre and substantially reduced at 10 mg/litre. Nitrogenase activity was reduced to < 50% of control levels at 10 mg/litre. 7.1.2 Algae The 96-h EC50, i.e., the calculated concentration of methyl parathion that would inhibit growth by 50% of the diatom Skeletonema costatum , ranged between 5.0 and 5.3 mg/litre (Walsh & Alexander, 1980; Walsh et al., 1987). Exposure of cultures of Chlorella protothecoides to 26-80 µg methyl parathion/litre resulted in decreases in cell growth, as measured by cell count, and chlorophyll and protein contents (Saroja- Subbaraj & Bose, 1982; Saroja-Subbaraj & Bose, 1983a). These effects were correlated with a reduction in photosynthetic electron transfer (Saroja-Subbaraj & Bose, 1983a; Saroja-Subbaraj & Bose, 1983b). Recovery from the effect on photosynthesis occurred after removal of the pesticide. Tolerance to the effect of methyl parathion on cell growth occurred for several weeks after exposure (Saroja- Subbaraj & Bose, 1984). In a natural phytoplankton community, addition of 1 mg methyl parathion/litre led to a 5% decrease in the productivity (Butler, 1964). An algal bloom (species not specified) in a methyl parathion-treated pond was suggested to have been induced by the mortality of herbivorous mayfly larvae and Daphnia (Crossland & Elgar, 1983). 7.2 Aquatic animals The acute effects of methyl parathion on aquatic animals in laboratory studies are presented in Table 18. The data show that the sensitivity of aquatic animals to methyl parathion varies considerably between species. LC50 values of more than 1 mg/litre have been found for some freshwater biota (molluscs, fish, and amphibians). Insect sensitivity to methyl parathion depends not only on the species but on the life stage. In general, instar I larvae are more affected than instar IV larvae. Apperson et al. (1978) showed that larvae may develop a resistance to methyl parathion. Both freshwater and marine crustaceans are sensitive to methyl parathion with EC50 values ranging from 0.002 to 0.050 mg/litre. In general, copepods were less sensitive than decapods in laboratory tests. Many laboratory studies have been performed on the acute toxicity of methyl parathion for fish. The following symptoms of methyl parathion poisoning can be expected to occur in fish: darkening of the skin, hyperactivity, body tremors, lethargy, jerky swimming, scalosis, loss of equilibrium, opercular or gaping paralysis, and death (Rao et al., 1967; Anees, 1975; Midwest Research Institute, 1975). One response that may be considered to be somewhat characteristic of acute methyl parathion poisoning in fish is the extreme forward position of the pectoral and pelvic fins (Midwest Research Institute, 1975; Srivastava & Singh, 1981). Table 18. Acute effects of methyl parathion on aquatic animals in laboratory studies Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda MOLLUSCA Freshwater mussel Lamellidens 48 st.c m, LC50 20 000 - Moorthy et al. (1983) marginalis Lamellidens m, LC50 25 000 - Moorthy et al. (1983) marginilis Lamellidens 20 g 48 st. m, LC50 23 400 - Rao et al. (1983) marginalis Eastern oyster Crassostrea larvae 48 st.; natural seawater d, EC50 12 000 P: 99% Mayer (1997) virginice 25 °C s: TEG Marine hard clam Mercenaria adult 96 St.: wellwater; no effect 25 000 s: acetone Mayer (1987) mercenaria 24°/oo d 20 °C pH8 Nassa dosoleta adult 96 st.; wellwater; no effect 25 000 s: acetone Meyer (1987 24°/oo d 20 °C pH8 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda ANNELIDA (Estuerine) Branchiura - 72 st.; 4.4 °C m, 100% 4000 P: techn.gr. Naqvi (1973) sowerbyi s: acetone Branchiura - 72 st.; 21 °C m, 0% 4000 P: techn.gr. Naqvi (1973) sowerbyi s: acetone - 72 st.; 32.2 °C m, 100% 4000 P: techn.gr. Naqvi (1973) s: acetone CRUSTACEA (Freshwater) Water flea Daphnia adult 24 st.; dechlorinated i, LC50 2.4 P: 93.8% Stephenson & longispira tap-water; s: acetone Kane (1984) 19.5 °C; H 250e Daphnia < 24 h 24 st.; dechlorinated i, LC50 4.1 P: 93.8% Stephenson & magna old tap-water; s: acetone Kane (1984) 19.5 °C; H 250 Daphnia adult 24 - i, LC50 5.4 P: 93.8% Stephenson & magna s: acetone Kane (1984) Daphnia < 24 h 48 st.; artificial i, LC50 7.8-9.1 P: 99% Dortland (1980) magna old water; 18 °C s: acetone Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Daphnia first 48 st.; reconst. i. LC50 0.14 P: 98.7 Mayer & Ellersieck magnia instar water; 21 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.2-7.5; H40-50 Daphnia - 3 st.; 24 °C m, LC50 8.5 - Nishiuchi & Hashimoto, pulex (1967) Moira macrocopa - 3 st.; 24 °C m, LC50 5.5 - Nishiuchi & Hashimoto (1967) Simocephalus first 48 st.; reconst. i, LC50 0.37 P: 98.7% Mayer & Ellersieck secrultus instar water; 15 °C s: acetone (1986) larva pH 7.2-7.5 H 40-50 Scud Gammarus adult 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 3.8 P: 98.7% Mayer & Ellersieck fasciatus water; 15 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.2-7.5; H 40-50 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Field crab Oziotelphusa - 48 st.; tap-water; m, LC50 1000 P: techn.gr. Reddy et al. (1986a) senex senex pH 7.3; 30 °C s: acetone DO 6.2g; H 38 Crayfish Orconectes adult 96 st.: reconst. m, LC50 15 P: 98.7% Mayer & Ellersieck nais water; 15 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.2-7.5; H 162-272 Procambarus 2.5- 96 st.; tap-water; m, LC50 3 P: techn.gr. Cheeh et al. (1980) acutus 3.5 cm pH 8.4; H 100 from clean area 1.2- 48 st.; tap-water; m, LC50 2.4 P: techn.gr. Albaugh (1972) 1.5 cm pH 8.7; H 10 as acetone from treated 1.2- 48 st.; tap-water; m, LC50 3.4 P: techn.gr. Albaugh (1972) area 1.5 cm pH 8.7; H 10 s: acetone Procambarus 8.9 cm 36 st.; distilled m, LC50 41 P: 51% Chang & Lange (1967) clarkii water 22.2-25-5 °C Procambarus 8.9 cm 24 at.; tap-water m, LC50 50 P: tech.gr. Muncy & Oliver (1963) clarkii 16-32 °C pH 7.6 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Procambarus 8.9 cm 48 st.; tap-water m, LC50 40 P: tech.gr Muncy & Oliver (1963) clarkii 16-32 °C pH 7.6 Procambarus 8.9 cm 72 st.; tap-water m, LC50 40 P: tech.gr. Muncy & Oliver (1963) clarkii 16-32 °C pH 7.6 ESTUARINE AND MARINE Copepod Acartia tonsa - 96 st.; natural m, LC50 28 P: 99% Mayer (1987) seawater; 22°/oo s: TEG 22 °C; pH 8.1- 8.2; DO 7-7.6 Acartia tonsa adult 96 st.; syntheric m, LC50 890 P: 80% Khattat & Farley seawater; 22°/oo (1976) 17 °C Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Sand shrimp Crangon 2.6 cm 24 st.; wellwater m, LC50 11 s: acetone Eisler (1969) septemspinosa 0.25 g 24°/oo; 20 °C; pH 8 DO 7.1-7.7 Crangon 2.6 cm 48 st.; wellwater m. LC50 3 s: acetone Eisler (1969) septemspinosa 0.25 g 24°/oo; 20 °C; pH 8 DO 7.1-7.7 Crangon 2.6 cm 96 st.; wellwater m, LC50 2 s: acetone Eisler (1969) septemspinosa 0.25 g 24°/oo; 20 °C; pH 8 DO 7.1-7.7 Mysid shrimp Mysidopsis 24 h 96 st.; natural m, LC50 0.98 P: 99% Mayer (1987) bahia old seawater; 20°/oo; s: TEG 25 °C; DO 4.3-5.5 Mysidopsis 24 h 96 st.; natural no effect 0.32 P: 99% Mayer (1987) bahia old seawater; 20°/oo; s: TEG 25 °C; DO 4.3-5.5 Mysidopsis 24 h 96 flow-through m, LC50 0.77 P: 99% Mayer (1987) bahia old natural seawater; s: TEG 20°/oo; 25 °C; DO 4.3-5.5 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Mysidopsis < 24 h 96 flow-through m, LC50 0.78 P: 99% Mayer (1987) bahia old 14°/oo; 19.5 °C; s: TEG Mysidopsis juvenile 96 flow-through m, LC50 0.77 s: TEG Nimmo et al. (1981) bahia 22-28 °C Mysidopsis juvenile 96 flow-through MATCg 0.11-0.16 s: TEG Nimmo et al. (1981) bahia 22-28 °C Hermit crab Pagurus 3.5 mm 24 st.; wellwater m, LC50 23 s: acetone Eisler (1969) longicarpus 0.28 g 24°/oo; 20 °C; ph 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Pagurus 3.5 mm 48 st.; wellwater m, LC50 7 s: acetone Eisler (1969) longicarpus 0.28 g 24°/oo; 20 °C; ph 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Pagurus 3.5 mm 96 st.; wellwater m, LC50 7 s: acetone Eisler (1969) longicarpus 0.28 g 24°/oo; 20 °C; ph 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Crab Portunus Zo÷e IV 24 25 °C m, LC50 0.17-0.5 - Hirayama & Tamaoi trituberculatus stage (1980) Grass shrimp Palaemonetes 31 mm 24 st.; wellwater; m, LC50 15 s: acetone Eisler (1969) vulgaris 0.47 g 24°/oo; 20 °C; ph 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Palaemonetes 31 mm 48 st.; wellwater; m, LC50 10 s: acetone Eisler (1969) vulgaris 0.47 g 24°/oo; 20 °C; ph 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Palaemonetes 31 mm 96 st.; wellwater; m, LC50 3 s: acetone Eisler (1969) vulgaris 0.47 g 24°/oo; 20 °C; ph 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Brown shrimp Penaeus aztecus adult 24 flow-through m, LC50 5.5 s: acetone Butler (1964) 29°/oo; 25 °C Penaeus aztecus adult 48 flow-through m, LC50 5.5 s: acetone Butler (1964) 29°/oo; 25 °C Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Pink shrimp Penaeus duorerum - - flow-through m, LC50 1.9 s: acetone Schoor & Brausch, 17-31 °/oo + TEG (1980) 7.6-28.8 °C Penaeus duorarum post- 96 flow-through m, LC50 1.2 s: TEG Mayer (1987) larvae natural seawater P: 99% 20 °/oo; 25 °C Japanese shrimp Peneaus post- 24 25 °C m, LC50 0.5-0.9 - Hirayama & Tamaoi japonicus larve (1980) Shrimp Penaeus post- 96 st.; natural seawater m, LC50 1.4 s: TEG Mayer (1987) stylirostris larvae 20 °/oo; 25 °C; P: 99% DO 5.6-6.3 Penaeus adult 96 st.; 15 °/oo; m, LC50 148 - Reddy & Rao (1986) monodon 23 °C; pH 7.3 Penaeus adult 96 st.; 15 °/oo; m, LC50 98 - Reddy & Rao (1986) indicus 23 °C; pH 7.3 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Penaeus (inter-molt) 48 st.; seawater; m, LC50 95-Reddy & Rao (1986) indicus 2.5 g 15 °/oo; 23 °C pH 7.1 Metapenaeus adult 96 st.; 15 °/oo m, LC50 102 - Reddy & Rao (1986) monoceros 23 °C; pH 7.3 Metapenaeus (inter-molt) 48 st.; seawater; m, LC50 120- Reddy & Rao (1988) monoceros 2.5 g 15 °/oo; 23 °C; pH 7.1 Metapenaeus adult 96 st.; 15 °/oo m, LC50 115 - Reddy & Rao (1986) dopsoni 23 °C; pH 7.3 INSECTA Mosquito Culex piplens 4th 24 st.; 28 °C; m, LC50 30 P: 98.2% Yasuno et al. (1965) instar deionized s: ethanol larva water Culex piplens 4th 24 st.; 28 °C; m, LC50 2000 P: 98.2% Yasuno et al. (1965) instar polluted s: ethanol larva water Culex piplens 4th 96 st.; 28 °C; m, LC50 30 P: 98.2% Yasuno et al. (1965) instar deionized s: ethanol larva water Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Culex pipiens 4th 96 st.; 28 °C; m, LC50 80 000 P: 98.2% Yasuno et al. (1965) instar polluted s: ethanol larva water Chactorus 1st 24 st.; lake m, LC50 1.6 P: techn.gr. Apperson et al. astictopus instar water; 25 °C s: acetone (1978) larva (1962 exper.) Chactorus 4th 24 st.; lake m, LC50 30 P: techn.gr. Apperson et al. astictopus instar water; 25 °C s: acetone (1978) larva (1962 exper.) Chactorus 1st 24 st.; lake m, LC50 18 P: techn.gr. Apperson et al. astictopus instar water; 25 °C s: acetone (1978) larva (1978 exper.) Chactorus 4th 24 st.; lake m, LC50 85 P: techn.gr. Apperson et al. astictopus instar water; 25 °C s: acetone (1978) larva (1978 exper.) Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Damselfly Ischnura larva 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 33 P: 98.7% Mayer & Ellersiack venticalus water; 15 °C s: acetone (1987) pH 7.2-7.5 H 167-272 FISH (Freshwater) Betta adult 120 tap-water; 25 °C m, LC50 7500-8000 s: haxana Walsh & Hanselka splendens pH 7-7.4 (1972 Goldfish Carassius 0.6- 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 9000 P: 80% Mayer & Ellersieck auratus 1.7 g water; 18 °C; s: acetone (1986) pH 7.1 Carassius 4.6 cm 24 st.; dest. m, LC50 14 000 P: 80% Pickering et al. auratus 1.2 g water; 25 °C; s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5 H 20; DO 4-8 Carassius 4.6 cm 48 st.; distilled m, LC50 12 000 P: 80% Pickering et al. auratus 1.2 g water; 25 °C; s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5 H 20; DO 4-8 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Carassius 4.6 cm 96 st.; distilled m, LC50 12 000 P: 80% Pickering et al. auratus 1.2 g water; 25 °C; s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5 H 20; DO 4-8 Golden carp Cyprinus - 48 st.; 24 °C m, LC50 > 10 000 P: 80% Nishiuchi & auratus s: acetone Hashimoto (1967) Carp Cyprinus < 1 year 24 st.; 20 °C m, LC50 27 600 P: 80% Rehwoldt et al. carpio pH 7.2; DO 6; s: acetone (1977) H 50 Cyprinus < 1 year 48 st.; 20 °C m, LC50 21 200 P: 80% Rehwoldt et al. carpio pH 7.2; DO 6; s: acetone (1977) H 50 Cyprinus < 1 year 96 st.; 20 °C m, LC50 14 800 P: 80% Rahwoldt et al. carpio pH 7.2; DO 6; s: acetone (1977) H 50 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Cyprinus 35 g 48 st.; 20 °C m, LC50 12 000 P: 80% Nagaratnamma & carpio pH 7.2; DO 6; s: acetone Ramamurthi (1982) H 50 Cyprinus 0.6- 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 7130 P: 80% Mayer & Ellersieck carpio 1.7 g water; 18 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.1 Cyprinus 0.6 g 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 8900 P: techn.gr. Johncon & Finley carpio 1.7 g water; 18 °C s: acetone (1980) pH 7.2-7.5 H 40-50 Cyprinus 0.6 g 48 st.; 24 °C m, LC50 > 10 000 P: techn.gr. Nishiuchi & carpio s: acetone Hashimoto (1967) Banded killifish Fundulus < 1 year 24 st.; 20 °C m, LC50 24 900 P: techn.gr. Rehwoldt et al. diaplanus pH 7.2; DO 6; s: acetone (1977) H 50 Fundulus < 1 year 48 st.; 20 °C m, LC50 18 600 P: techn.gr. Rehwoldt et al. diaplanus pH 7.2; DO 6; s: acetone (1977) H 50 Fundulus < 1 year 96 st.; 20 °C m, LC50 15 200 P: techn.gr. Rehwoldt et al. diaplanus pH 7.2; DO 6; s: acetone (1977) H50 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Mosquito fish Gambusia adult 48 st.; dechlorinated m, LC50 13 480 P: 99% Chambers & affinis non tap-water s: Yarbrough (1974) resistent methoxy-ethanol Gambusia adult 48 st.; dechlorinated m, LC50 17 480 P: 99% Chambers & affinis non tap-water s: Yarbrough (1974) resistent methoxy-ethanol Catfish Heteropneustes adult 96 24 °C; pH 7,7; m, LC50 7000 s: acetone Srivastava & Singh fossilis (fem) DO 6; H 117 (1981) Heteropneustes 16 cm 24 st.; 23 °C; m, LC50 9400 s: acetone Singh & Srivastava fossilis 35 g pH 7.7; DO (1982) 6.1; H 115 Heteropneustes 16 cm 48 st.; 23 °C; m, LC50 8600 s: acetone Singh & Srivastava fossilis 35 g pH 7.7; DO (1982) 6.1; H 115 Heteropneustes 16 cm 72 st.; 23 °C; m, LC50 8000 s: acetone Singh & Srivastava fossilis 35 g pH 7.7; DO (1982) 6.1; H 115 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Heteropneustes 16 cm 96 st.; 23 °C; m, LC50 7000 s: acetone Singh & Srivastava fossilis 35 g pH 7.7; DO (1982) 6.1; H 115 Black Bullhead Ictalurus melas 0.6- 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 6640 P: 80% Mayer & Ellersieck 1.7 g water; 18 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.1 Catfish Mystus cavasius 6-8 cm 96 26-30 °C m, LC50 5900 - Murty & Ramani (1982) 7g Channel Catfish Ictalurus 1.4 g 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 5240 P. techn.gr. Mayer & Ellersieck punctatus water; 18 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.2-7.5; H 40-50 Guppy (Poecilia reticulata) Lebistes 6 mon. 24 st.; distilled m, LC50 11 000 P. 80% Pickering et al. reticulatus water; 25 °C s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5; H 20, DO 4-8 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Lebistes 6 mon. 48 st.; distilled m, LC50 9800 P. 80% Pickering et al. reticulatus water; 25 °C s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5; H 20, DO 4-8 Lebistes 6 mon. 96 st.; distilled m, LC50 9800 P. 80% Pickering et al. reticulatus water; 25 °C s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5; H 20, DO 4-8 Lebistes < 1 year 24 st.; 20 °C m, LC50 12 200 P. 80% Rehwoldt et al. reticulatus pH 7.2; DO 6 s: acetone (1977) H 20 Lebistes < 1 year 48 st.; 20 °C m, LC50 9400 P. 80% Rehwoldt et al. reticulatus pH 7.2: DO 6 s: acetone (1977) H 20 Lebistes < 1 year 96 st.; 20 °C m. LC50 6200 P. 80% Rehwoldt et al. reticulatus pH 7.2; DO 6 s: acetone (1977) H 20 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Green sunfish Lepomis 0.8 g 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 6860 P: techn.gr. Mayer (1987) cyanellus water; 17 °C s: acetone pH 7.2-7.5; H 40-50 Lepomis 0.8 g 48 st.; tap-water m, LC50 > 5000 P: techn.gr. Minchew & Ferguson cyanellus 20 °C s: acetone (1969) Pumpkinseed Lepomis 40-50 g 24 injection, st. m, LD50 > 2500 P: 99% Benke et al. (1974) gibbosus s: corn oil Lepomis < 1 year 24 st.: 20 °C m, LD50 4900 P: 99% Rehwoldt et al. gibbosus pH 7.2; DO 6; s: corn oil (1977) H 50 Lepomis < 1 year 48 st.: 20 °C m, LD50 3600 P: 99% Rehwoldt et al. gibbosus pH 7.2; DO 6; s: corn oil (1977) H 50 Lepomis < 1 year 96 st.: 20 °C m, LD50 3600 P: 99% Rehwoldt et al. gibbosus pH 7.2; DO 6; s: corn oil (1977) H 50 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Bluegill sunfish Lepomis fingerling 24 st.; reconst. m, LC50 6470 P: 44.6% McCann & Jasper machrochirus water; 18 °C s: water (1972) pH 7; H 17 Lepomis 0.6- 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 5720 P: 80% Macak & McAllister machrochirus 1.7 g water; 18 °C s: acetone (1970) pH 7.1 Lepomis 4-6 cm 24 st.; distilled m, LC50 9800 P: 80% Pickering et al. machrochirus 1.2 g water; 25 °C s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5 H 20; DO 4-8 Lepomis 4-6 cm 48 st.; distilled m, LC50 8600 P: 80% Pickering et al. machrochirus 1.2 g water; 25 °C s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5 H 20; DO 4-8 Lepomis 4-6 cm 96 st.; distilled m, LC50 2400 P: 80% Pickering et al. machrochirus 1.2 g water; 25 °C s: acetone (1962) pH 7.2-7.5; H 20; DO 4-6 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Lepomis 1 g 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 4380 P: techn.gr. Mayer & Ellersieck machrochirus water; 17 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.2-7.5 H 40-50 Lepomis 0.6- 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 5170 P: 80% Macek & McAllister machrochirus 1.7 g water; 18 °C s: acetone (1970) pH 7.1 Largemouth bass Micropterus 0.6- 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 5220 P: 80% Mayer & Ellersieck salmoides 1.7 g water; 18 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.1 Mystus cavasius - 96 - m, LC50 5900 - Murty & Ramani (1982) Golden shiner Notamigonus - 48 st.; tap-water: m, LC50 > 5000 P: techn.gr. Minchew & Ferguson chrysoleuces 20 °C s: acetone (1969) Coho salmon Oncorhynchus 0.6- 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 5300 P: 80% Meyer & Ellersieck kisutch 1.7 g water; 13 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.1 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Medaka Oryzias latipes - 48 er.; 24 °C m, LC50 7500 P: techn.gr, Nishiuchi & s: acetone Hashimoto (1967) Yellow perch Perca 1.4 g 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 3060 P: techn.gr. Mayer & Ellersieck flavescens water; 18 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.2-7.5; H 40-50 Punti Puntius 6- 24 st.; 27.9 °C m, LC50 2900 P: 50% Rao et al. (1967) puckelli 8.5 cm pH 8.3; H 130 Puntius 6- 48 st.; 27.9 °C m, LC50 2700 P: 50% Rao et al. (1967) puckelli 8.5 cm pH 8.3; H 130 Puntius 6- 96 st.; 27.9 =C m, LC50 2100 P: 50% Rao et al. (1967) puckelli 8.5 cm pH 8.3; H 130 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Fathead minnow Pimephales 1.2 g 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 8300 P: techn.gr. Mayer & Ellersieck promelas water; 18 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.2-7.5; H40-50 Pimephales - 48 flow-through m, LC50 7400 P: 98.5% Solon & Nair (1970) promelas s: acetone Pimephales - 96 flow-through m, LC50 3750 P: 98.5% Solon & Nair (1970) promelas s: acetone Pimephales newly 96 st.; sterilized m, LC50 4460 P: 80% Jarvinen & Tanner promelas hatched water; 25 °C (1982) larvae pH 7.4-7.8; DO 6.5-8.4; H 64 Pimephales newly 96 st.; sterilized m, LC50 1220 P: 80% Jarvinen & Tanner promelas hatched water; 25 °C DO 6.5-8.4; H stock (1982) larvae pH 7.4-7.8; 64 solution aged 11 weeks Pimephales newly 96 st.; sterilized m, LC50 8170 P: 80% Jarvinen & Tanner promelas hatched water; 25 °C controlled- (1982) larvae pH 7.4-7.8; release DO 6.5-8.4; H 64 formulation Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Pimephales newly 96 st.; sterilized m, LC50 3470 P: 80% Jarvinen & Tanner promelas hatched water; 25 °C controlled (1982) larvae pH 7.4-7.8; release DO 6.5-8.4; H 64 formulation for 11 weeks Pimephales newly 96 flow-through; m, LC50 5360 P: 80% Jarvinen & Tanner promelas hatched sterilized water (1982) larvae 25 °C; pH 7.4- 7.8; DO 6.5-8.4; H 64 Pimephales newly 96 flow-through; m, LC50 6910 P: 80% Jarvinen & Tanner promelas hatched sterilized water controlled (1882) larvae 25 °C; pH release 7.4-7.8; formulation DO 6.5-8.4; H 64 Pimephales 4-6 cm 24 st.; distilled m, LC50 13 000 P: 80% Pickering et al. promelas 1-2 g water; 25 °C s: acetone (1862) pH 7.4-7.5; H 20; DO 4-8 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Pimephales 4-6 cm 48 st.; distilled m, LC50 9800 P: 80% Pickering et al. promelas 1-2 g water; 25 °C s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5; H 20; DO 4-8 Pimephales 4-6 cm 96 st.; distilled m, LC50 9500 P: 80% Pickering et al. promelas 1-2 g water; 25 °C s: acetone (1962) pH 7.4-7.5; H 20; DO 4-8 White perch Roccus < 1 year 24 st.; 12 °C m, LC50 22 400 P: 80% Rehwoldt et al. americanus pH 7.2 s: acetone (1977) Roccus < 1 year 46 st.; 12 °C m, LC50 18 600 P: 80% Rehwoldt et al. americanus pH 7.2 s: acetone (1977) Roccus < 1 year 96 st.; 12 °C m, LC50 14 000 P: 60% Rehwoldt et al. americanus pH 7.2 s: acetone (1977) Cutthroat trout Salmo clarki 0.2 g 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 1850 P: techn.gr. Mayer & Ellersieck water; 12 °C s: acetone (1996) pH 7.2-7.5; H 162-272 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) Salmo 1.1 g 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 3700 P: techn.gr. Mayer & Ellersieck gairdneri water; 12 °C; s: acetone (1986) pH 7.2-7.5; H 162-272 Salmo 0.6- 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 2750 P: 80% Macek & McAllister gairdneri 1.7 g water; 13 °C; s: acetone (1970) pH 7.1 Salmo 24 mm 96 st.; 12 °C m, LC50 2800 P: 76.8% Palawski et al. gairdneri (1983) Brown trout Salmo trutta 0.6- 96 st,; reconst, m, LC50 4750 P: 80% Mayer & Ellersieck 1.7 g pH 7.1 s: acetone (1986) water; 13 °C Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Brook trout Salvelinus 0.5 g 96 st.; reconst. m, LC50 3780 P: techn.gr. Mayer & Ellersieck fontinalis water; 12 °C s: acetone (1986) pH 7.2-7.5; H 40-50 Northern pike Esox lucius 0.4 g 24 st.; 18 °C m, LC50 760 P: techn.gr. Mayer & Ellersieck pH 7.1; H 44 s: acetone (1986) Tilapia tilapia - 48 st.; 26-28 °C m, LC50 266 P: techn.gr. Rao & Rao (1983) mossambica pH 7; H 140 s: 2-methoxyethanol ESTUARINE AND MARINE American eel Anguilla 59 24 st.; underground m, LC50 27 600 P: act, Eisler (1970a) rostrata mm-0.14 g wellwater; ingredient 24%0; 20 °C; s: acetone pH 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Anguilla 59 48 st.; underground m, LC50 22 400 P: act. Eisler (1970a) rostrata am-0. 14 g wellwater; ingredient 24°/oo; 20 °C; s: acetone pH 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Anguilla 59 96 st.; underground m, LC50 16 900 P: act. Eisler (1970e) rostrate am-0.14 g wellwater; ingredient 24°/oo; 20 °C; s: acetone pH 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Anguilla < 1 year 24 st.; 20 °C. m, LC50 42 600 P: act. Rehwoldt et al. rostrata pH 7.2; DO 6; ingredient (1977) H 50 s: acetone Anguilla < 1 year 48 st.; 20 °C. m, LC50 37 200 P: act. Rehwoldt et al. rostrata pH 7.2; DO 6; ingredient (1977) H 50 s: acetone Anguilla < 1 year 96 st.; 20 °C. m, LC50 6300 P: act. Rehwoldt et al. rostrata pH 7.2; DO 6; ingredient (1977) H 50 s: acetone Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Sheephead minnow Cyprinodon 28 days 96 st.; natural m, LC50 12 000 P: 99% Mayer (1987) variegatus old sea-water; s: TEG 20°/oo; 25 °C; DO 4.6-5.7 Cyprinodon 28 days 96 st.; natural no effect 10 000 P: 99% Mayer (1987) variegatus old sea-water; s: TEG 20°/oo; 25 °C; DO 4.6-5.7 Mummichog Fundulus 55 mm 24 st.; underground m, LC50 > 85 100 P: act. Eisler (1970a) heteroclitus 1.7 g wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Fundulus 55 mm 48 st.; underground m, LC50 85 200 P: act. Eisler (1970a) heteroclitus 1.7 g wallwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Fundulus 55 mm 96 st.; underground m, LC50 58 000 P: act. Eisler (1970a) heteroclitus 1.7 g wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Fundulus 42 mm 96 st.: underground m, LC50 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Fundulus 42 mm 96 st.; underground m, LC50 4000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ( + 240h wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient observation) 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7. 1-7.7 Fundulus 42 mm 96 st.; underground m, LC50 1210 solution Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus wellwater; 24°/oo; aged for 20 °C; pH 8; 96 h DO 7.1-7.7 Fundulus 42 mm 96 10 °C 20% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Fundulus 42 mm 96 15 °C 10% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Fundulus 42 mm 96 36 °/oo 100% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Striped killifish Fundulus 84 mm 24 st.; underground m, LC50 29 000 P: act. Eisler (1970a) majalis 6.5 g wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Fundulus 84 mm 48 st.; underground m, LC50 19 400 P: act. Eisler (1970a) majalis 6.5 g wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Fundulus 84 mm 24 st.; underground m, LC50 13 800 P: act. Eisler (1970a) majalis 6.5 g wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Fundulus 42 mm 96 20 °C 50% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Fundulus 42 mm 96 25 °C 100% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Fundulus 42 mm 96 30 °C 100% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Fundulus 42 mm 96 12 °/oo 0% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Fundulus 42 mm 96 18 °/oo 0% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Fundulus 42 mm 96 24 °/oo 10% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Fundulus 42 mm 96 30 °/oo 70% M 8000 P: act. Eisler (1970b) heteroclitus ingredient s: acetone Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Spot Leiostomus 84 mm 96 st.; natural m, LC50 93 P: 99% Mayer (1987) xanthurus 6.5 g seawater; 2°/oo; s: TEG 25 °C; DO 3.2-4.5 Leiostomus 84 mm 96 st.; natural no effect 56 P: 99% Mayer (1987) xanthurus 6.5 g seawater; 2°/oo; s: TEG 25 °C; DO 3.2-4.5 Leiostomus 84 mm 96 flow-through m, LC50 59 P: 99% Mayer (1987) xanthurus 6.5 g 20°/oo; 25 °C s: TEG Atlantic silverside Menidia 50 mm 24 st.; underground m, LC50 24 800 P: act. Eisler (1970a) menidia 0.8 g. wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °Cr pH 8r s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Menidia 50 mm 48 at.; underground m, LC50 21 900 P: act. Eisler (1970a) menidia 0.8 g wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °Cr pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Menidia 50 mm 96 st.; underground m, LC50 5700 P: act. Eisler (1970a) menidia 0.8 g wellwater; 24°/oo; ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Striped bass Morone 1 year 24 st.; 20 °C; m, LC50 16 800 P: act. Rehwoldt et al. saxatilis pH 7.2; DO 6; ingredient (1977) H 50 s: acetone Morone 1 year 48 st.; 20 °C; m, LC50 14 200 P: act. Rehwoldt et al. saxatilis pH 7.2; DO 6; ingredient (1977) H 50 s: acetone Morone 1 year 96 st.; 20 °C; m, LC50 14 000 P: act. Rehwoldt et al. saxatilis pH 7.2; DO 6; ingredient (1977) H 50 s: acetone Morone adult 96 interm. flow m, LC50 790 P: 99% Earnest (1970) saxatilis 12.8 ° Morone juvenile 96 flow-through m, LC50 790 P: 86% Korn & Earnest saxatilis 13 °C; 30 °/oo s: ethanol (1974) Black mullet Mugil cephalus 48 mm 24 st.: underground m, LC50 39 000 P: act. Eisler (1970a) 0.78 g wellwater; 24 °/oo ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Mugil cephalus 48 mm 48 st.: underground m, LC50 26 300 P: act. Eisler (1970a) 0.78 g wellwater; 24 °/oo ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Mugil cephalus 48 mm 96 st.: underground m, LC50 5200 P: act. Eisler (1970a) 0.78 g wellwater; 24 °/oo ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Northern puffer Sphaeroides 196 mm 24 st.; underground m, LC50 100 000 P: act.. Eisler (1970a) maculatus 153 g wellwater; 24 °/oo ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Sphaeroides 196 mm 48 st.; underground m, LC50 91 000 P: act. Eisler (1970a) maculatus 153 g wellwater; 24 °/oo ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Sphaeroides 196 mm 96 st.; underground m, LC50 75 800 P: act. Eisler (1970a) maculatus 153 g wellwater; 24 °/oo ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Bluehead Thalassoma 90 mm 24 st.; underground m, LC~ 98 000 P. act. Eisler (1970a) bifasciatum 7 g wellwater; 24 °/oo ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Thalassoma 90 mm 48 st.; underground m, LC50 88 000 P. act. Eisler (1970a) bifasciatum 7 g wellwater; 24 °/oo ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; DO 7.1-7.7 Thalassoma 90 mm 96 st.; underground m, LC50 12 300 P. enct. Eislar (197Oa) bifasciatum 7 g wellwater; 24 °/oo ingredient 20 °C; pH 8; s: acetone DO 7.1-7.7 AMPHIBIA Rana adult 96 st.; tap-water: m, LC50 8000 Mudgall & Patil cyanophlyctis 23 °C; pH 7.3-7.8; (1987) (male) H 60-70; DO 6.7-7.9 Rana adult 96 st.; tap-water: m, LC50 11 500 Mudgall & Patil cyanophlyctis 23 °C; pH 7.3-7.8; (1987) (female) H 60-70; DO 6.7-7.9 Table 18 (continued) Species Life Test Experimental Criterion Concentration Remarksb References stage period conditions effect (µg/litre) (h) measureda Western chorus frog Bendacris tadpole 96 st.; 15 °C; m, LC50 3700 Mayer & Ellersieck triseriata pH 7.1; H 44 (1986) a Criterion: m = mortality; i = immobilization; d = development; % M = % mortality. b P = purity; s = solvent; TEG = triethyiene glycol; techn.gr. = technical grade. c st. = static. d °/oo = salinity. e H = hardness in mg/litre CaCO3. f DO = dissolved oxygen in mg O2/litre. g MATC = maximum acceptable toxic concentration. Murty et al. (1984) state that the lowest concentration causing irreversible effects in the fish Mystus carasius after a 1-h exposure was 15 mg/litre. 7.2.1 Short-term toxicity in aquatic invertebrates 220.127.116.11 Laboratory studies on single species Exposure of the freshwater mussel (Lamellidens marginalis) to sublethal (8 mg/litre) concentrations resulted in a transient increase (at 12 h) followed by a decrease (at 24-72 h) in the rate of respiration (Moorthy et al., 1984). Exposure of this species to concentrations ranging from 10 to 50 mg/litre resulted in a concentration-dependent decrease in heart rate (Rao et al., 1983a). For crustaceans, long-term toxicity levels appear to be of the same magnitude as acute: a no-effect level on the reproduction of Daphnia magna was 0.0012 mg methyl parathion/litre after 21 days (artificial water, 18 °C; Dortland, 1980). Exposure of the freshwater crab (Oziotelphusa senex senex) to sublethal levels of methyl parathion (0.1-1 mg/litre) resulted in complete inhibition of molt, a delay in the onset of molt, or a decrease in the percentage of molting animals (Reddy et al., 1985). A decrease in the carbohydrate content and increase in acid phosphatase activity in both the hepatopancreas and muscle also occurred (Reddy et al., 1986a; 1986b). Eisler (1970a,b) found a 20% increase in mortality in Nassa docoleta after 10 days' exposure to 25 mg/litre (well water with a salinity of 24o/oo, 20°C, pH 8) in. Exposure of prawns (Penaeus indicus or Metapenaeus monoceros) to sublethal concentrations of methyl parathion resulted in a concentration-dependent inhibition of acetylcholinesterase activity, which recovered in 7 days (Reddy & Rao, 1988). An increase in tissue levels of ammonia, urea, and glutamine, apparently resulted from the increased production of ammonia from purines and glutamate (Reddy et al., 1988; Reddy & Rao, 1990a). There was also an increase in tissue levels of fatty acids and cholesterol (Reddy & Rao, 1989), while the activity of alkaline phosphatase in the hepatopancreas was inhibited, and the acid phosphatase activity, enhanced (Reddy & Rao, 1990b). Changes in hepatic glycogen content and haemolymph glucose levels were observed after 5 days of sublethal methyl parathion exposure (Reddy & Rao, 1990b). Cripe et al. (1981) tested the stamina of mysid shrimp (Mysidopsis bahia) in swimming against a water current in the presence of methyl parathion. Concentrations of 0.10 and 0.31 µg/litre did not affect maximum sustained speeds of the shrimp, but they were significantly reduced on exposure to 0.58 µg/litre. 18.104.22.168 Mesocosmic studies After treatment of ponds with methyl parathion, the effects on daphnids were similar to those observed in the laboratory. However, indirect biological effects occurred that could not be predicted on the basis of laboratory tests. For example, the observed increase in populations of the crustacean Diaptomus sp. in treated ponds was attributed to the mortality of competitors (Daphnia spp.) and predators ( Cyclops and aquatic insects) (Crossland & Elgar, 1983). Generally, recovery of zooplankton occurred soon after the end of treatment of ponds (Apperson et al., 1976; Crossland & Elgar, 1983). The numbers of free-swimming Diptera and Ephemeroptera were significantly reduced compared with controls, as were the benthic chironomid larvae in ponds treated at 100 µg/litre. Seventy days after treatment, there was evidence of recovery of populations of chironimids and Ephemeroptera , with full recovery 90 days after treatment (Crossland & Elgar, 1983). 7.2.2 Fish 22.214.171.124 Laboratory studies on single species Jarvinen & Tanner (1982) conducted a long-term mortality study on the fish Pimephales promelas (flow through conditions, sterile water, 25 °C, pH 7.4-7.8, 46 mg CaCO3/litre, 6.5-8.4 mg dissolved O2/litre). Methyl parathion concentrations of 0.59-0.77 mg/litre induced increased mortality after 32 days. No effects on mortality were found at 0.38 mg/litre for the technical grade product and 0.59 mg/litre for the controlled release formulation. Mortality in rainbow trout (Salmo gairdneri) increased to 98% after exposure to 2.8 mg technical grade methyl parathion/litre (wellwater, 12 °C, pH 7.5, 272 mg CaCO3/litre) for 96 h, followed by 7 days of observation (Palawski et al., 1983). Exposure of the tilapia fish (Tilapia mossambica) to methyl parathion at a concentration of 0.09 mg/litre for 48 h resulted in a decrease in various anions and cations in tissues (Rao et al., 1983b), and in inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (20-60%) and ATPase (10-14%) activities. The activities of aspartate and alanine amino-transferase in muscle, gill, liver, and brain increased by 12-31% and 9-31%, respectively (Rao & Rao, 1984a; 1984b). Concentrations of carbohydrate and glycogen decreased in the tissues examined (Rao & Rao, 1983). Levels of soluble protein and the activity of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase, a key enzyme of the hexose monophosphate shunt, in muscle, gill, and liver, were increased (Rao & Rao, 1987). Changes in carbohydrate metabolism were also observed in the freshwater fish Clarias batrachus , when exposed to sublethal concentrations of methyl parathion (7 mg/litre) for 48 and 96 h (Rani et al., 1989). There were significant decreases in glycogen (liver) and in pyruvate (liver, brain, gill) contents and increases in glucose (gill) and lactate (liver, brain, gill) levels, and the specific activities of several enzymes were inhibited. Exposure of the catfish (Channa punctatus) to 52 µg methyl parathion/litre resulted in the elevation of serum triiodothyronine (T3) as well as depression of brain acetylcholinesterase activity (Ghosh et al., 1989). This low dose of methyl parathion also impaired the regulation of gonadal function by gonadotropic hormone and gonado tropin-releasing hormone in Channa punctatus (Ghosh et al., 1990). The inhibiting effect was also seen under field conditions where water concentrations of methyl parathion amounted to 0.239 µg/litre (Ghosh et al., 1990). Exposure to sublethal doses of 0.1 mg methyl parathion/litre (corresponding to 1/5th of the LC50 values) for 75 days produced severe ovarian damage in the carp minnow (Rasbora daniconius) (Rastogi & Kulshrestha, 1990). Effects included diminished growth of ovaries and histopathological changes in immature, maturing, and mature oocytes. Sublethal concentrations of methyl parathion (1.2 mg/litre) induced behavioural abnormalities in the juveniles of the fish Cyprinus carpio , such as imbalance, increased opercular movement and irritation (Babu et al., 1986). Exposed juveniles, when transferred to pesticide-free medium, showed rapid recovery. Little et al. (1990) exposed rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) to methyl parathion at 0.01 or 0.1 mg/litre and measured various behavioural parameters. Swimming capacity (as cm/s) was unaffected at any concentration tested, though spontaneous swimming activity was significantly reduced at both exposures. Number of prey (Daphnia) consumed was reduced, even at the lower exposure (0.01 mg/litre), but the percentage of daphnia consumed and the strike frequency of the fish on daphnia were only affected at 0.1 mg/litre. The capacity of the trout to escape from a predator was only reduced at 0.1 mg/litre. In a static system (well water, salinity: 24o/oo, 20 °C, pH 8), with the fish Fundulus heteroclitus, the LC50 was 0.96 mg/litre after exposure for 10 days or 4 mg/litre after exposure for 4 days followed by 10 days in clean water (Eisler, 1970b). 126.96.36.199 Mesocosmic studies In a methyl parathion-treated experimental pond, a high mortality rate was observed in rainbow trout, 37 days after treatment, which was associated with depression of the concentration of dissolved oxygen to less than 3 mg/litre, and decay of large amounts of algal biomass (Crossland & Elgar, 1983; see also section 7.3). 7.2.3 Amphibians After application of methyl parathion to Rana cyanophlyctis, Mudgall & Patil (1987) found increased levels of glycogen in muscles, liver, and kidney, compared with control animals. On the basis of the marked elevated glycogen concentration in the kidney, it was concluded that the kidneys were the main target organ. The effects of metacid (DDT + 50% w/w methyl parathion) on the development of the Indian bullfrog (Rana tigrina) were determined by Mohanty-Hejmadi & Dutta (1981). Threshold concentrations for adverse effects on eggs, feeding stage, and limb bud stage tadpoles ranged from 0.00005% to 0.004% metacid. These levels were much lower than the recommended dosage for the field application of metacid (0.15%). 7.3 Terrestrial organisms 7.3.1 Plants Methyl parathion has been found to have phytotoxic effects in diverse crops, such as cotton (Gossypium hirsutum) (Brown et al., 1962; Roark et al., 1963; Youngman et al., 1989, 1990) and lettuce (Lactuca sativa) (Toscana et al., 1982; Johnson et al., 1983; Youngman et al., 1989). Swamy & Veeresh (1987) found a reduction in lipid synthesis in methyl parathion-treated seeds of Sorghum sp., 24 h after germination. An increase in lipid production with a substantial elevation in unsaturated fatty acids was observed in methyl parathion-treated sorghum, 120 h after germination. The same effect occurred in 48-h seedlings, which were treated with the degradation products of methyl parathion. From this, it was concluded that the time-related reversal effect of methyl parathion is triggered by the pesticide degradation products themselves. Exposure of sorghum seeds to methyl parathion for 1 h before germination resulted in an accumulation of proline in the seedlings and a reduction in growth, without affecting the water content. Residues of methyl parathion in the soil also influenced seed germination and seedling growth (Deshpande & Swamy, 1987). 7.3.2 Invertebrates Poisoning of bees has been reported after incorrect application of methyl parathion on windy days (Bubien, 1971). Analysis of dead honey bees (Apis mellifera; Hymenoptera) for pesticide residues, during 1983-85 in the USA, showed that the health of colonies, poisoned with methyl parathion (Penncap-M) or with a combination of methyl parathion and other insecticides, was often severely affected, whereas colonies contaminated by insecticides other than methyl parathion often recovered (Anderson & Wojtas, 1986). Acute toxicity values were established for acetone formulations of methyl parathion applied topically to workers of Africanized and European honey bees (Apis mellifera) (Danka et al., 1986). The LC50 values of 0.32 µg and 0.17 µg/bee, respectively, showed the greater tolerance to methyl parathion of Africanized bees compared with European bees. Jepson (1989) calculated a hazard ratio (ratio of contact LD50 at 0.11 µg/bee to the application rate of the pesticide at 500 g a.i./ha) for methyl parathion in honey bees of 8937 (using the method of Smart & Stevenson, 1982). Values of the hazard ratio greater than 50 are usually considered to indicate danger for bees. Along with azinphos methyl, methyl parathion has a very high indication of danger for bees from field spraying. Although the intrinsic toxicity for bees is as high for other pesticides, such as the pyrethroids, the hazard ratio is lower, since application rates of these pesticides are also lower. Methyl parathion applied to small barriered plots of spring wheat at 1000 g a.i./ha did not have any apparent adverse effects on leaf litter decomposition and on earthworm populations (species not differentiated). Effects on individual earthworm species could not be demonstrated, because of statistically insufficient numbers of mature specimens collected (Shires, 1985). Methyl parathion has adverse effects on many different beneficial insects. It was placed in the highest class of toxicity (score 4 in a classification of 1-4) for Chrysopa (Plannipennia), Coccinellidae (Coleoptera), and Hymenoptera (Entomophaga) (Höbaus, 1987). Side effects on the predator mite Phytoseiulus persimilis were placed in class 3 (Kniehase & Zoebelein, 1990). Thompson & Gore (1972) assessed the toxicity of methyl parathion (95-99% purity) for Folsomia candida (Collembola) by direct contact in a spray tower and when applied to soil. In the direct-contact study, a 0.01% methyl parathion solution caused a 100% mortality of the collembola, 24 h after being treated. A 100% mortality rate also occurred in soil (Plainfield sand) treated with 0.5 mg methyl parathion/kg dry weight soil after a 24-h exposure. Methyl parathion (0.05%) sprayed on coconut leaflets was found to be highly toxic to the parasitoid fauna (Hymenoptera; Ento-mophaga ) of a coconut coccid (Opisina arenosella; Homoptera). The mortality of the caged insects was assessed 24 h after introduction of leaflets and after longer periods (Jalaluddin & Mohanasundaram, 1989). Flanders et al. (1984) conducted a field study of methyl parathion (sprayed at recommended rates of 0.84 kg a.i./ha, in an encapsulated formulation, on soybeans) effects on Pediobius foveolatus , a parasitoid of the Mexican bean beetle Epilachnia varivestis . The pupae within parasitized beetles were unaffected by the insecticide and emerged normally. However, residues of methyl parathion on the plants killed 100% of the adult parasites emerging within 1 day, and 50% of those emerging within 3 days of the spraying. By 9 days after spraying, the mortality of emerging parasite adults was no longer affected by residues. Walker et al. (1985) examined the effects of methyl parathion, used at 0.6 kg a.i./ha on rice fields in Louisiana, on the survival and reproduction of parasitic nematodes (Romanomermis culcivorax), introduced into the fields to control mosquito larvae. There were not any adverse effects of the insecticide on the nematodes. Only a few cases of resistance to methyl parathion have been reported among arthropod parasites or predators. The reports refer to the braconid Bracon mellitor (Hymenoptera), a parasite of the boll weevil (Anthonomous grandii), which developed low levels of resistance after 5 or more generations of selection in the laboratory, and to field populations of the coccinellid Coleomegilla maculata (Coleoptera) taken from cotton fields, treated extensively with methyl parathion for 2 decades (Croft, 1977). One week after application of methyl parathion (1000 g a.i./ha) on small barriered plots of spring wheat, the number of predatory beetles (mainly 4 species of Carabidae and 3 genera of Staphylinidae) fell to about 10% of that in the untreated control plot. Recovery occurred between 4 and 6 weeks after application, but a further fall in numbers of predatory beetles was observed 8-12 weeks after application (Shires, 1985). This second reduction was attributed to an indirect effect of the treatments, causing removal of the predators' food supply (mainly cereal aphids). 7.3.3 Birds The acute lethal toxicities of methyl parathion for birds are compiled in Table 19. Percutaneous administration of methyl parathion was more toxic for young mallard ducks (Anas platyrhynchos) than oral (dietary) administration (Hudson et al., 1979). Studies on mallard ducks (Anas platyrhynchos) have shown that methyl parathion can affect the brood-rearing phase by increasing mortality and causing behavioural changes (Fairbrother et al., 1988). At least 40% of young ducklings exposed to sub-lethal oral doses of methyl parathion (4 mg/kg body weight) died within 40 min in outdoor enclosures. Several activities (swimming, preening, feeding) of mothers and ducklings were changed in treated broods. Ducks (Anas platyrhynchos; A. discors; Aix sponsa) nesting in agricultural fields aerially treated with methyl parathion (1.4 kg a.i./ha) had a higher average daily rate of duckling losses than those nesting in untreated fields (Brewer et al., 1988). Spraying of methyl parathion at 1.4 kg a.i./ha did not significantly reduce the hatchability of starling (Sturnus vulgaris) eggs and the number of young fledglings per nest. However, collectively, the number of fledglings from the treated field was significantly lower than that from the control field (Robinson et al., 1988). Buerger et al. (1991) dosed wild bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus) with methyl parathion at 0, 2, 4, or 6 mg/kg body weight by oral intubation and then released them into the wild. The birds were monitored for 14 days by radio telemetry. Only the birds receiving 6 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight showed significantly reduced survival and this was the result of predation rather than overt toxicity. Activity was not affected by any treatment. Survivors did not show any inhibition of brain cholinesterase activity after 14 days, compared with controls. Bennett et al. (1991) examined parameters of reproductive success in mallard ducks exposed to a dietary concentration of methyl parathion of 400 mg/kg. The female mallards were fed the methyl parathion diet at different stages of egg laying and incubation. Numbers of hatchlings per nest were 61%, 43%, and 58% of controls for birds exposed during egg laying, early incubation, and late incubation, respectively. Daily egg production was reduced during the treatment period, though 4 out of 10 hens resumed egg laying after treatment was terminated. A dose-dependent inhibition of brain and plasma cholinesterase, hyperglycaemia, and elevated corticosterone concentrations were observed in the American kestrel (Falco sparverius) exposed to oral doses of up to 3 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight (Rattner & Franson, 1984). Table 19. Acute lethal toxicities of methyl parathion for birds Species Age Oral LD50 Dietary LC50 References (mg/kg body weighta) mg/kgb Mallard duck 5 days 8 Fairbrother et al. (Anas platyrhynchos) (1988) 3 months 10 Hudson et al. (1984) adult 6.6 Mallard duck 10 days 682 Hill et al. (1975) (Anas platyrhynchos) Mallard duck 5 days 336 Hill et al. (1975) (Anas platyrhynchos) Kestrel > 8 3.08 Rattner & Franson (Falco sparverius) months (1984) Bobwhite quail 14 days 90 Hill et al. (1975) (Colinus virginianus) Table 19 (continued) Species Age Oral LD50 Dietary LC50 References (mg/kg body weighta) mg/kgb Bobwhite quail 14 days 91 Bennet (1989) (Colinus virginianus) Japanese quail 14 days 79 Hill et al. (1975) (Coturnix coturnix japonica) Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica) 14 days 69 Hill & Camardese (1986) Ring-necked pheasant 10 days 91 Hill et al. (1975) (Phasianus colchicus) Red-winged blackbird - 10 Schafer (1972) (Agelaius phoeniceus) a intubation of a single dose. b 8 days - standard test. 5 days feeding followed by 3 days observation. Egg production in Japanese quail was inhibited and hatchability reduced at 60 mg/kg (NRC, 1977). Methyl parathion-induced mortality following long-term ingestion was generally due to anorexia. Grackles (Quiscalus quiscula) had lost 28-36% of their initial body weight, when they died. No fat was visible and the muscles were reduced on the sternum. There was an increase in mortality at relatively constant intake rate of methyl parathion observed between May and August, which was related to an increase in natural activity within this time. It was concluded, that median lethal dietary concentrations are relative and depend on the anorexic and physiological condition of wild birds (Grue, 1982). The mean brain AChE activity of grackles (Quiscalus mexicanus) was significantly inhibited more than that of white-winged doves (Zenaida asiatica) and that of mourning doves (Zenaida macroura) after applications of EPN (phenylphosphonothioic acid O-ethyl O-p-nitro- phenyl ester) and methyl parathion (Custer & Mitchell, 1987). Free-living, female red-winged blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus) were captured on their nests and given oral doses of 2.4 or 4.2 methyl parathion mg/kg body weight and released immediately after dosing. Although methyl parathion caused ataxia, lacrimation, and lethargy and significantly depressed cholinesterase activity (> 35%) at 4.2 mg/kg, there were no apparent adverse effects on incubation behaviour and nesting success (Meyers et al., 1990). Depressed brain acetylcholinesterase activity was also observed in 2 bird species (red-winged blackbird, (Agelaius phoeniceus), and dickcissel (Spiza americana)) inhabiting wheat fields treated with methyl parathion (0.67 kg a.i./ha). Maximal inhibition occurred 5 days after pesticide application. Enzyme activity levels returned to near normal levels by the tenth day following application. Cholinesterase inhibition for dickcissels and red-winged blackbirds differed significantly (74% versus 40%), and these differences could not be explained by the diets of the 2 species, as they were similar (Niethammer & Baskett, 1983). A subacute oral dose of 3.5 mg methyl parathion/kg per day resulted in inhibition of brain cholinesterase (average decrease of 36%) in nuthatches (Sitta carolinensis) after 3-7 days exposure (Herbert et al., 1989). 7.3.4 Non-laboratory mammmals Two wild rodent species (Sigmodon hispudus and Mus musculus) were found to have a higher mortality rate and to recover more slowly from exposure to methyl parathion at oral doses of 14-80 mg/kg, compared with laboratory rodents (Roberts et al., 1988). Clark (1986) reported a greater tolerance to methyl parathion in little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus) compared with wild mice (Mus musculus): the 24-h oral LD50 value (372 mg/kg body weight) of methyl parathion for little brown bats was 8.5 times the LD50 value for mice (44 mg/kg body weight). A loss of coordination was observed in 50% of the animals that were still alive 24 h after the treatment. The poisoned bats could be more easily captured by predators. The threshold of the coordination loss was about 1/3 of the LD50 value. In toxicity tests, mink (Mustela vison) rejected methyl parathion-treated diets and appeared to die from starvation rather than from methyl parathion poisoning (Aulerich et al., 1987). 8. EFFECTS ON EXPERIMENTAL ANIMALS AND IN VITRO TEST SYSTEMS The inhibition by methyl parathion of acetylcholinesterase at nerve endings results in an accumulation of endogenous acetylcholine, as evidenced by peripheral and central cholinergic nervous system signs (Taylor, 1980). Toxic effects include profuse salivation, lacrimation, nasal discharge, colic, diarrhoea, pupil constriction, excessive sweating, coughing, vomiting, frequent urination, anxiety, restlessness, hyperactivity, and hyperkinesis. A more complete treatise on the effects of organophosphorus insecticides in general, especially their short- and long-term effects on the nervous system, can be found in Environmental Health Criteria 63: Organophosphorus insecticides - A general introduction (WHO, 1986). 8.1 Single exposure Toxicological data on methyl parathion are summarized by Taylor (1980) and Flucke (1984). The acute toxicity values in a number of species following the oral (Table 20), dermal (Table 21), inhalational (Table 22), and intraperitoneal (Table 23) administration of methyl parathion show lethal doses of about 3-400 mg/kg for the oral route, 40-300 mg/kg for the dermal route, 3.5-72 mg/kg for the intraperitoneal route, and 30-300 mg/m3 for inhalation exposure. The acute subcutaneous LD50s for methyl parathion in rats and mice were 6 and 18 mg/kg body weight, respectively (Krueger & Casida, 1957; RTECS, 1991); the acute intravenous LD50 was reported to be 4.1-14.5 mg/kg body weight in rats, 2.3-13 mg/kg body weight in mice, and 50 mg/kg body weight in guinea-pigs (NIOSH, 1976). Izmirova et al. (1984) found an abrupt reduction in the blood and brain cholinesterase and acetylcholinesterase activities in albino rats in the 30th and 90th min after a single oral administration of 32 mg methyl parathion/kg. The blood cholinesterase activity was reduced by 71% and the brain acetylcholinesterase activity by 54%. Twenty-four hours after administration, the cholinesterase activity was higher than that in the controls. Table 20. Acute oral toxicity Animal (sex)a LD50 (mg/kg body References weight) rat (m) fasted 2.9 Heimann (1982) rat (f) fasted 3.2 Heimann (1982) rat 6 Bayer AG (1988); RTECS (1991) rat (m) 7.4 Flucke & Kimmerle (1977) rat (f) nonfasted 9.3 Heimann (1982) rat (m) nonfasted 10.8 Heimann (1982) rat (m) 11.7 Kimmerle (1975) rat (m) 14 Gaines (1960, 1969) rat (f) 24 Gaines (1960, 1969) rat 35 Kagan (1971) mouse 23 RTECS (1991) mouse 14.5 Haley et al. (1975) mouse 33.1 Mundy et al. (1978) mouse 21.8 Mundy et al. (1978) mouse 19.5 Haley et al. (1975) rabbit (m) fasted 19 Heimann (1982) rabbit (f) fasted 19.4 Heimann (1982) rabbit 420 RTECS (1991) Table 20. (cont'd) Acute oral toxicity Animal (sex)a LD50 (mg/kg body References weight) guinea-pig 1270 RTECS (1991) guinea-pig 417 NIOSH (1976) dog 90 Hirschelmann & Bekemeier (1975) a m= male, f= female. Table 21. Acute dermal toxicity Animal, Duration of Ld50 (mg/kg Ld100 References sexa exposure (h) body weight) rat 1b 63 RTECS (1991) rat (m,f) - 67 Gaines (1960, 1969) rat (m) 24 46 Heimann (1982) rat (f) 24 44 Heimann (1982) rabbit (m) 6 1270 (pure) Deichmann et al. (1952) rabbit (m) 6 350-780 (technical Deichmann grade) et al. (1952) rabbit (m) 6 420 (pure, in Deichmann corn oil) et al. (1952) rabbit (m) 6 2500 (pure, Deichmann suspended in et al. (1952) water) rabbit - 300 RTECS (1991) a m = male, f = female. b no data given. Table 22. Acute inhalation toxicity Animal Duration of LC50 References (sex)a exposure (h) (mg/m3 air) rat 1 120 RTECS (1991) rat 1 34 Molnar & Paksy (1978) rat (m) 1 200 Kimmerle & Lorke (1968) rat (m) 1 260 Thyssen (1979) rat (f) 1 320 Thyssen (1979) rat (m) 4 120 Kimmerle & Lorke (1968) rat (m) 4 185 Thyssen (1979) rat (f) 4 170 Thyssen (1979) mouse 4 120 RTECS (1991) a m = male f= female. Table 23. Acute intraperitoneal toxicity Animal LD50(mg/kg body weight) References rat 3.5 Du Bois & Coon (1952) rat adult 5.8 Brodeur & Du Bois (1963) rat juvenile 3.5 Brodeur & Du Bois (1963) rat 7 Kimmerle (1975) mouse 9.3 Kimmerle (1975) mouse 11.0 Benke et al. (1974) mouse 6.4 Kamienski & Murphy (1971) mouse 8.2 Mirer et al. (1977) mouse 72 Goyer & Cheymol (1967) Dogs that received 10 or 30 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight intravenously showed minimal activity of the plasma cholinesterases, 30 min after treatment. Sixteen hours after the injection of 10 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight, the enzyme activities had returned to their pre-injection values. However, following treatment with 30 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight, it took 7 days for complete recovery (Braeckman et al., 1980). After i.p. injection of 2.4 mg Wofatox (methyl parathion), Karcsu et al. (1981) observed complete inhibition of the histochemically detectable acetylcholinesterase activity in the central nervous system of the rat. Partial enzyme inhibition was found in the motor neurons and in the striated muscles. Ultrastructural changes in the myocardium of the rats were also confirmed. 8.2 Skin and eye irritation, sensitization The skin of rabbits exposed to methyl parathion for 4 or 6 h did not show perceptible signs of irritation (concentrations up to LD100, Table 21, Deichmann et al., 1952). Similar results were obtained by Hecht & Wirth (1950) and by Heimann (1982) in their studies on rats. The irritation potential of methyl parathion on the rabbit skin and eye was studied according the OECD guidelines for the testing of chemicals (Nos. 404 and 405). It was concluded that methyl parathion had no primary irritating potential (Pauluhn, 1983). 8.3 Short-term exposures Groups of Wistar albino rats were exposed to methyl parathion aerosol concentrations of 0.9, 2.6, and 9.7 mg/m3 air for 6 h/day, 5 days/week for 3 consecutive weeks. No mortality occurred. Plasma and brain cholinesterase levels were significantly depressed in the highest dose group. At 2.6 mg/m3, slight inhibition of plasma ChE occurred (Thyssen & Mohr, 1982). Groups of New Zealand white rabbits were administered methyl parathion (purity 96.3%) dermally at dose levels of 10, 50, and 250 mg/kg body weight, applied for 5 days/week over 3 weeks. The site was left uncovered for 6 h and then it was cleaned with soap and water. There was a dose-related inhibition of erythrocyte and brain cholinesterases in the 50 and 250 mg/kg dose groups. Plasma ChE was also significantly depressed in the highest dose group; these animals presented signs of cholinergic poisoning and 5 out of 6 animals died (Mihail & Vogel, 1984). A 12-week dietary study at 5, 20, and 50 mg methyl parathion/kg was performed on male and female dogs. The doses corresponded to 0.1, 0.4, and 1.0 mg/kg body weight per day. A significant decrease in plasma cholinesterase activity was observed only at 50 mg/kg diet (Williams et al., 1959). 8.4 Long-term exposures Kazakova et al. (1974) fed chicken and cattle daily with 2.5 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight for one year. No changes in health status and food intake were observed. In pigs and cows, 10 mg/kg body weight led to irritation, depression, miosis, salivation, intensified peristaltics, and diarrhoea. Rats fed diets containing 40 mg methyl parathion/kg for 2 years, and mice (females: fed up to 125 mg/kg, males: fed up to 77 mg/kg) did not display any cholinergic toxicity (NCI, 1979). In a 2- year study (combined long-term/carcinogenicity), 500 rats (50 male, 50 female per dose, 100 controls) were fed diets containing 0, 2, 10, or 50 mg methyl parathion/kg. The intake of active ingredient was 0, 0.144, 0.713, 4.917 mg/kg body weight per day (females). The highest dose led to retardation of growth, increase in mortality, inhibition of cholinesterase-activity in plasma, erythrocytes, and brain, reduction of haemoglobin, and haematocrit, and an increase in reticulocytes, after 2 years. Female rats showed a reduction in plasma proteins and a reversible increase in urea in plasma and protein in urine. At 10 mg/kg diet, the cholinesterase activity in plasma and red blood cells was inhibited. Male rats also showed reduced cholinesterase activity in the brain. Extensive histopathological examinations (cardiovascular, respiratory, and urogenital systems, digestive tract, organs, and glands) did not exhibit any substance-related changes. No toxic effects were found at the lowest dose (Bomhard et al., 1981; Schilde & Bomhard, 1984). Sixty rats per sex and group were fed diets containing methyl parathion at concentrations of 0.5, 5, or 50 mg/kg for 2 years. Sciatic nerve preparations from 1 out of 5 males in the low-dose group and 1 out of 5 in the mid-dose group reportedly showed moderate degenerative changes. In the high-dose group (50 mg/kg diet), sciatic nerve preparations from treated males showed a loss of myelinated fibres. These animals also showed more myelin degeneration and Schwann cell proliferation. Similar, less severe changes were seen with a lower incidence, in males fed 5.0 or 0.5 mg/kg per day males and in the controls. Only 1 rat in the low-dose group and 1 in the mid-dose group had more severe changes than the controls; however, 4 high-dose males showed more severe changes. No obvious differences were seen in the females. Haemoglobin, haematocrit, and RBCs were slightly reduced in mid-and high-dose males, and moderately reduced in high-dose females (Daly, 1983). 8.5 Reproduction, embryotoxicity, and teratogenicity Dosages of 4 or 6 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight were injected intraperitoneally into pregnant, female albino Holzmann rats. The injection was made on day 9 or day 15 using an ethanol-propylene glycol vehicle. It was found, that the fetal, cerebral, cortical cholinesterase activity was reduced, indicating the transplacental passage of the organophosphate. Large subcutaneous haematomas also occurred; however, no significant developmental defects were noticed (Fish, 1966). Ackermann (1974) also reported that there was no placental barrier for methyl parathion. A 3-generation study was performed by the Woodard Research Corporation in 1966. This unpublished report was reviewed by Anon., FAO/WHO (1969). Rats received diets of 0, 10, or 30 mg methyl parathion per kg diet. A sporadic reduction in the litter size of groups was observed (30 mg/kg: F2alpha, F2ß, F3alpha; 10 mg/kg: F1ß), also a delayed growth of litters until weaning (30 mg/kg: F2alpha, F3alpha, F3ß; 10 mg/kg: F1ß), a reduced rate of survival of the litters (30 mg/kg: F1alpha, F1ß, F2alpha); 10 mg/kg: F3alpha), and an increased rate of stillbirths (30 mg/kg: F1ß, F3alpha). Another 3-generation study was performed by the Midwest Research Institute (1975). Rats received 0, 10, or 30 mg methyl parathion/kg diet (corresponding to 0, 0.5, or 1.5 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight); 2 litters of each generation were evaluated. No adverse effects on growth, survival, or reproduction were observed at the 30 mg/kg level, however, the 10 mg/kg level caused a reduction in the postnatal survival in weaning rats in the F1ß and F3alpha generations. Similar results were found in the 3-generation study of Löser & Eiben (1982). Rats (male and female, SPF-Wistar W 74 strain, 5-6 weeks old) were fed a diet containing technical methyl parathion (95% pure) at 2, 10, or 50 mg/kg for 77 days and then mated. The no-effect level in this study was 2 mg/kg diet. A dose of 50 mg methyl parathion/kg caused reductions in neonatal weights and litter size, and delayed body weight gains, while 10 mg/kg caused sporadic reductions in litter size (F2alpha, F3alpha), delayed growth of litters until weaning (F1alpha, F2alpha, F2ß), and a reduced rate of survival of the litters. Single doses of 3, 30, or 100 µg methyl parathion (in 10% DMSO) were administered subgerminally into chicken eggs on day 2 and intra-amniotically on days 3 and 4. These doses did not induce any specific malformations. Embryotoxicity was noted at the 2 higher doses (30 and 100 µg) (Benes & Jelinek, 1979). These findings were confirmed by estimating the embryotoxicity range and parameters (Jelinek et al., 1985). Doses of up to 55 µlitre Wofatox 50EC/kg egg reduced haematocrit, glucose, cholesterol, and AChE activity and increased aspartate aminotransferase and lactate dehydrogenase values in blood samples of chicken embryos (Somlyay et al., 1989). The injection of 2 different concentrations of methyl parathion (13 and 135 mg/kg egg) into pheasant eggs resulted in increased mortality and in an increased incidence of skeletal deformities in the survivors (Varnagy et al., 1984; Déli & Varnagy, 1985; Varnagy & Déli, 1985). Biochemical studies on muscle samples from chicken embryos (eggs treated with 0.4% or 4.0% solution of Wofatox 50EC) showed decreased creatine kinase activity, decreased creatine, creatine-phosphate, and Mg2+ (in cervical muscle only) contents, and increased creatinine, Ca2+, and Mg2+ (in femoral muscle only) values (Déli et al., 1985). Scanning electron microscopic examination of the cartilage in chicken embryos showed degeneration of collagen structure and chondrocytes at a high insecticide concentration (eggs treated with 0.4% or 4.0% solution of Wofatox 50EC) (Varnagy et al., 1988). Analysis of the protein pattern of the cervical muscles of 18-day-old embryos, treated with 0.4% methyl parathion solution showed decreases in alpha-actinin, alpha-tubulin, ß-tubulin, and gamma-proteins (Déli & Kiss, 1988). Studies on chickens showed that methyl parathion at 1-10 µmol/litre had no or only little effect on the adenylate cyclase in the embryo muscle. Comparable results were obtained with rats using the plasma membrane adenylate cyclase in rat livers, even at 100 µmol/litre. In the presence of adenylate cyclase-stimulating agents, additional activation of methyl parathion was observed; it enhanced the stimulating activity of GTP and isoproterenol together, but not alone. Methyl parathion is soluble, but not metabolized, in plasma membranes, so it may alter cellular levels of cAMP, and, thus, cell growth (Déli & Kiss, 1986). At very high doses (20 or 60 mg/kg body weight), methyl parathion injected intraperitoneally in ICR-CL mice on day 10 of pregnancy, caused convulsions, hypersalivation, ataxia, and tremor. At the higher dose, 5 out of the 14 litters died. This dose caused reduced neonatal weight, an increase in the occurrence of cleft palate, and an increased incidence of cervical ribs in the fetuses. At the lower dose, cleft palate, and a statistically non-significant increase in the number of cervical ribs and underdeveloped sternebrae were observed (Tanimura et al., 1967). A single intraperitoneal injection of 5, 10, or 15 mg/kg body weight was administered to Wistar rats on day 12 of pregnancy; signs of toxicity and reduced body weight were observed with 15 mg/kg, but there was no evidence of teratogenicity at any of the doses (Tanimura et al., 1967). On 6 alternate days between days 5 and 15 of pregnancy, 3 groups of rats received orally 0.1, 1, or 3 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight. Another group of rats received 3 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight on 8 alternate days between days 5 and 19 of pregnancy. No teratogenic effects were observed; however, the high doses caused increased resorptions and decreased fetal body weight (Fuchs et al., 1976). Methyl parathion was administered orally by gavage, to groups of female rats from day 6 to day 15 of gestation at dose levels of 0.1, 0.3, or 1 mg/kg body weight. Weight gain in the mothers and a slight retardation in growth in the fetuses were noted at the highest dose level. Methyl parathion was not toxic for the embryo or fetus and no teratogenic effects were apparent (Machemer, 1977a). Groups of 24-26 rats received intravenous injections of 0, 0.03, 0.1, or 0.3 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight per day from day 6 to day 15 of pregnancy. On day 20, the fetuses were evaluated. No treatment-related effects were found (Machemer, 1977b). No signs of embryotoxicity or teratogenicity were found in rabbits that received 0.3, 1.0, or 3.0 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight on days 6-18 of pregnancy (Renhof, 1984). Daily intraperitoneal administration of methyl parathion (1 or 1.5 mg/kg body weight) to rats during days 6-19 of gestation resulted in decreases in both maternal and fetal protein synthesis (Gupta et al., 1984). The effect was dose dependent, and was greater on day 19 than on day 15 of gestation; it was also greater in fetal than in maternal tissues. The same dosage regimen resulted in a postnatal decrease in acetylcholinesterase activity and muscarinic receptor binding. Recovery of acetylcholinesterase activity to near normal levels occurred by day 28 in the low-dose offspring, but not in the high-dose weanlings (Gupta et al., 1985). 8.6 Mutagenicity and related end-points Methyl parathion has been reported to have DNA-alkylating properties. Mutagenicity test results have been both positive and negative. The results of most of the in vitro mutagenicity studies with both bacterial and mammalian cells were positive; the in vivo studies produced equivocal results. A survey is given in Table 24. 8.7 Carcinogenicity The carcinogenicity of methyl parathion was studied in mice by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in 1979. Groups of 50, six-week-old female B6C3F1 mice received diets containing either 62.5 or 125 mg methyl parathion/kg for 102 weeks. For 37 weeks, 2 groups of 50 male mice received diets containing either 62.5 or 125 mg methyl parathion/kg, which was reduced then to 20 or 50 mg/kg for another 65 weeks. Untreated matched groups of 20 males and 20 females were used as a control. From all groups, 80-86% were still alive at the end of the study. There was no statistically significant increase in tumour incidence. The NCI (1979) also studied the carcinogenicity of methyl parathion in rats. Groups of 50 female and male Fischer 344 rats (6 weeks old) received separate diets containing 20 or 40 mg methyl parathion/kg for 105 weeks. As matched controls, 20 male and 20 female rats remained untreated. Only 46% of the high-dose females survived, but 78% high-dose males, 74% low-dose males, 82% low-dose females, 85% control males, and 95% control females were still alive at the end of the study. No statistically significant increase in tumour rates was found. Male and female rats in groups of 50 were fed for 2 years with diets containing 2, 10, or 50 mg methyl parathion/kg. No toxic effects were found at the low dose (see section 8.4). No morphological changes due to the insecticide were detected. No carcinogenic effects of methyl parathion were observed (Bomhard et al., 1981; Schilde & Bomhard, 1984). Table 24. Mutagenicity tests of methyl parathion Test Species Dose levels Metabolic Results Reference activation Microorganism Gene mutation tests S. typhimurium _a +/- - Simmon et al. (1977) Ames TA100, TA1535 +/- Carrere et al. (1978) TA1536, TA1537 TA 1538 Ames S.typhimurium 250-1250 µg/plate + - Rashid & Mumma (1984) TA100 Ames S. typhimurium 250-1250 pg/plate + - Rashid & Mumma (1984) TA98, TA1535, TA1537, TA1538 Ames S. typhimurium Herbold (1986) TA1535 > 1000/µg/plate +/- + TA 100 > 500/µg/plate +/- + TA1537, TA1538 20-2500/µg/plate +/- Reverse mutations E. coli WP2 and 1 crystal or microdrop - - Dean (1972) WP2uvrA 250-2500/µg/plate +/- - Simmon et al. (1977) Rashid & Mumma (1984) Forward mutations E. coli 1 x 10-2mol/litre - + Mohn (1973) streptomycin/ Wild (1975) 5-methyl-tryptophane resistance Table 24 (continued) Test Species Dose levels Metabolic Results Reference activation ade-6 forward mutation Sacharomyces 11-228 mmol/litre - - Gilot-Delhalle et al. pombe (1983) Recombinogenic Aspergillus 2 mg - - Morpugo et al. (1977) activity/point nidulans mutation (8-Aza-guanine resistance Streptomyces _a - - Carere et al. (1978) coelicolor Insects Sex link recessive Drosophila 1.25 x 10-5% w/w + Tripathy et al. (1987) lethal test melanogaster 6.3 x 10-6% w/w Larvae 24,48,72 h 24-48 and 72 h old exposure Mammals Thymidine kinase Mouse Iymphoma _a -/+ + Jones et al. (1982) locus ceils L51784 DNA effects Chinese hamster 20 and 40 µg/ml _a + Chen et al. (1981 ) chromatid ovary cells V79 28-72 h exchange (in vitro) Table 24 (continued) Test Species Dose levels Metabolic Results Reference activation Human lymphold 20 µg/ml - + Sobti et al. (1982) cells (LAZ-007) Human lymphold 20 and 40/µg/ml _a + (for Chen et al. (1981) cells 835 M and 28-72 h 20/µg/ml) Jeff cells Sister chromatid Human lymphocytes 36-181.8 µmol/litre - + (dose Singh et al. (1987) exchange (SCE) dependent) Unscheduled DNA Human fetal lung _a +/- - Simmon et al. (1977) synthesis WI 38 fibroblast Human lymphoid - - Huang (1973) cells up to 50/µg B411-4 6-50 h RMPI - 1788 RMPI - 7191 Mouse (in vivo) 10 mg/kg ip - Degraeve & Moutschen bone marrow (1984) germ cells Mouse, Swiss 9.4, 18.8, 37.5, + (dose Mathew et al. (1990) bone marrow 75 mg/kg body weight, oral dependent) Table 24 (continued) Test Species Dose levels Metabolic Results Reference activation Chromosomal aberrations Rat bone marrow 0.5 mg/kg body weight + (dose Malhi & Grover (1987) cells (in vivo) 1 mg/kg 1.95% 2 mg/kg 9.26% 5 days/week for 16.86% 7 weeks dependent) Micronucleus Wistar rat 1, 2 and 4 mg/kg ip + (dose Grover & Mahli (1985) (in vivo) dependent) Micronucleus Mouse 5-10 mg/kg body weight, - Herbold (1986) orally, daily, for 2 days Micronucleus Mouse, Swiss 9.4, 18.8, 37.5, 75 + (dose Mathew et al. (1990) mg/kg body weight, orally dependent) Dominant lethal Mouse, male 20 mg/kg diet - Simmon et al. (1977) ICR/SIM 40 mg/kg for 80 mg/kg 7 weeks Dominant lethal Mice, male Q 0.15 mg/litre (daily) in - Degraeve et al. (1984) strain drinking-water, 5-7 weeks a = no information given. 8.8 Special studies Seven white New Zealand rabbits per group were fed 0, 0.036, 0.162, 0.519, or 1.479 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight per day, for 8 weeks. A dose-dependent increasing atrophy of the thymus cortex and a reduced, delayed-type hypersensitivity response (DTH) were found (Street & Sharma, 1975). In a preliminary study, Fan et al. (1981) examined the effects of methyl parathion on immunological responses to S. typhimurium infection in mice. Mortality rates among infected animals fed 0.08, 0.3, or 0.7 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight (duration "extending beyond 2 weeks") were determined and protection by vaccination was examined. Dose-related increases in mortality were seen in unvaccinated mice and protection by immunization was decreased. These limited findings were reviewed by Sharma & Reddy (1987) and Thomas & House (1989). Methyl parathion was found by Barnes & Denz (1953) not to cause delayed neuropathy in their hen test. However, Nagymajitenyi et al. (1988) found neurotoxic effects on the central and peripheral nervous systems in both acute and short-term studies on CFY rats, in which the conduction velocity of the peripheral nerves, muscle function (ischidiacus nerve/gastrocnemius muscle), and EEG activity were measured. In the short-term studies, the rats were given 0.44 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight for 5 days/week for 6 weeks; in the acute study, the rats received 0.4 mg/kg, orally. Lipid metabolism in rats was investigated by Hasan & Ahmad Khan, (1985). The rats received daily intraperitoneal doses of 1.0, 1.5, or 2.0 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight for 7 days. The concentrations of total lipids, phospholipids, and cholesterol increased in a dose-related manner in the cerebral hemisphere, cerebellum, brain stem, and spinal cord. Lipid peroxidation increased in the CNS with the exception of the cerebellum. Khan & Hasan (1988) studied changes in the levels of ganglio sides and glycogen of the cerebral hemisphere, cerebellum, brain stem, and spinal cord following intraperitoneal injection of methyl parathion (1, 1.5, or 2 mg/kg body weight) in 24 rats for 7 days. A dose-related depletion in the concentration of gangliosides and glycogen content were discernible in all regions of the CNS. Preweanling, male, rat pups were exposed daily through subcutaneous injection to parathion (1.3 or 1.9 mg/kg body weight) or the vehicle (corn oil) on postnatal days 5-20, a period critical for the development of behavioural and biochemical parameters of the cholinergic nervous system. This exposure resulted in dose-dependent reductions in acetylcholinesterase activity and muscarinic receptor binding in the cortex. During the preweanling period, there were no differences among the groups in most reflex measures, eye opening, or incisor eruption. Postweanling behavioural assessment revealed small deficits in tests of spatial memory in both the T-maze and radial arm maze. There were no differences in neuromuscular abilities or spontaneous activity measures (Stamper et al., 1988). The behavioural effects of short-term exposure of male Wistar rats to methyl parathion (1/50 or 1/100 of LD50, orally, for 6 weeks) were studied. Open-field (OF) and elevated plus-maze (EPM) tasks were used to decide whether or not the compound could affect behaviour. Significant effects were measured in OF activity during the first minute, on the activity of crossing outer squares, increasing latencies to leave centre, start of rearing, grooming, and defecation. EPM parameters showed an increased amount of time spent in the open arms and a clear tendency to enter open arms more frequently. The defecation rate in the EPM was significantly decreased (Schultz et al., 1990). 8.9 Factors modifying toxicity Methyl parathion becomes toxic only after metabolic transformation to the oxon analogue, methyl paraoxon, by liver microsomal oxidation. The microsomal enzymes metabolize methyl parathion in 2 ways in vitro : a) oxidation to methyl paraoxon, and b) degradation to dimethyl phosphorothiotic acid and p-nitrophenol. NADPH and O2 are necessary for both reactions, indicating that these are oxidative processes (Nakatsugawa et al., 1968). Piperonyl butoxide inhibits the mixed function oxidase activity of the microsomal fraction of liver cells. Therefore, it inhibits both oxidative activation of methyl parathion and detoxification, but not the dealkylation reactions due to glutathione- S-alkyltransferase. At a dosage of 400 mg/kg body weight, piperonyl butoxide antagonized the toxic effects of methyl parathion in mice when given 1 h before the mice received the insecticide. The intraperitoneal toxicity of methyl parathion was reduced 40-fold (Kamienski & Murphy, 1971; Levine & Murphy, 1977a,b; Mirer et al., 1977). Diethyl maleate reduced the glutathione content of the liver by 80%. This agent increased the acute toxicity of methyl parathion by the inhibition of glutathione-dependent detoxification (Mirer et al., 1977). Pap et al. (1976) showed that methyl parathion was less toxic in rats with a thioacetamide-induced liver cirrhosis than in normal rats. After activating the microsomal enzymes in the liver with sodium phenobarbital or norandrostenolone phenylpropionate, the cirrhotic rats showed a normal susceptibility to methyl parathion, indicating the involvement of liver microsomes in the activation of methyl parathion. Treatment of normal rats with chloramphenicol could increase their survival time after poisoning with methyl parathion. Lead nitrate (Pb(NO3)2) reduced the toxicity of methyl parathion due to an increase in the carboxylesterase-dependent metabolism of the insecticide (Hapke et al., 1978). A single oral dose of 5 or 10 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight resulted in decreases in the cholinesterase activity in rats of 43.6% or 72.3%, respectively. However, rats pretreated on 5 successive days with a combination of 7 mg gentamycin/kg body weight and 20 mg rifamycin/kg body weight showed a remarkable protection against the toxic effects of methyl parathion. The toxic signs were minimal; the rats showed no, or only transient, signs of poisoning, and no convulsions were be observed in the rats that had been pretreated. The combination of these 2 drugs significantly prevented the methyl parathion-induced inhibition of cholinesterase in plasma and of the liver carboxylesterase. Gentamycin or rifamycin alone did not have any effect. Youssef et al. (1987) demonstrated, that gentamicin and rifamycin inhibited the formation of the oxidation product of methyl parathion, methyl paraoxon, in the liver and skeletal muscle. Both substances potentiated the rate of urinary p-nitrophenol excretion within 48 h of the methyl parathion application. Pretreatment with rifamycin influenced the rate of liver glutathion reduction, whereas gentamicin did not show this effect. Male rats were treated with a single i.p. dose of 5 mg methyl parathion/kg. Pretreatment with memantine hydrochloride (18 mg/kg, i.p.), 30 min before methyl parathion administration, and atropine sulfate (16 mg/kg, i.p.), 15 min before, significantly reduced (P <0.01) the inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (Gupta & Kadel, 1990). Pretreatment with cimetidine, which suppresses the hepatic microsomal oxidative metabolism, decreased the toxicity of methyl parathion in rats and mice (Joshi & Thornburg, 1986). Fuchs et al. (1986) showed that the LD50 in rats increased by 19-24% after simultaneous oral administration of 0.5 g humic acids/kg body weight and methyl parathion. It was supposed that the absorption of methyl parathion from the digestive tract decreased as a result of the intake of the humic acids. Sultatos (1987) perfused mouse livers in situ with methyl parathion. The acute toxicity of methyl parathion in mice was antagonized by pretreatment with phenobarbital, daily, for 4 days (80 mg/kg, i.p.). This effect was due to hepatic microsomal activation and resulted in an increased clearance of methyl parathion. Similar results were obtained by Du Bois & Kinoshita (1968), Du Bois (1969, 1971), and Murphy (1980). The influence of temperature on the toxicity of methyl parathion in mice was studied by Nomiyama et al. (1980). They found median lethal doses (i.p.) of 14 mg/kg body weight at 8 °C, 44 mg/kg body weight at 22 °C, and 35 mg/kg body weight at 38 °C. An influence of age on the toxicity and metabolism of methyl parathion was observed by Benke & Murphy (1975) in rats. Rats became much less sensitive to poisoning with methyl parathion with increasing age. The effect was explained by a presumable increase in the detoxification processes as the GSH-dependent (glutathion-dependent) dealkylation. Methyl parathion dealkylation rates increased directly with age for both sexes. Carbon disulfide pretreatment, 1 h before administration of 10 mg methyl parathion/kg body weight to mice did not significantly affect the methyl parathion toxicity (Yasoshima & Masuda, 1986). Prior depletion of glutathione by acetaminophen (600 mg/kg, i.p., Costa & Murphy, 1984) or by diethyl maleate (1 ml/kg, i.p., Sultatos & Woods, 1988) had little effect on the toxicity of methyl parathion (2.5 mg/kg body weight and up to 55 mg/kg body weight i.p., respectively) in the mouse. Interactions of organophosphorus pesticides and several pyrethroid insecticides were reported by Gaughan et al. (1980). Following an intraperitoneal injection of organophosphorus pesticides in mice, they found pronounced inhibition of the liver microsomal esterase, which hydrolyses trans-permethrin. Methyl parathion did not potentiate the toxicity of deltamethrin (Audegond et al., 1989). Equitoxic oral or i.p. combinations of methyl parathion with other organophosphorus insecticides (amiton, coumaphos, crufomat, dimethoate, dioxathion, disulfoton, fensulfothion, ethyl parathion, phosphamidon, trichlofon) caused only subadditive or additive effects on the LD50 values (Du Bois, 1961; West et al., 1961; Du Bois & Kinoshita, 1963; Frawley et al., 1963; Sanderson & Edson, 1964; McCollister et al., 1968; Flucke & Kimmerle (1977). Williams et al. (1957) found additive effects in their testing of oral combinations of methyl parathion with demeton, EPN, malathion, or ethyl parathion in dogs. Mice pretreated with 50-300 mg diethyl dithiocarbamate per kg body weight displayed a remarkable reduction in the acute toxicity of methyl parathion. The toxicity was up to 10 times less. Lange & Wiezorek (1975) explained this observation by an effect of the dithiocarbamate on the microsomal oxidases and, thus, on the metabolism of methyl parathion. Another explanation is that compounds that temporarily occupy the active site of acetylcholinesterase prevent phosphorylation of the enzyme until there has been time for destruction of the organic phosphorus compound by A-esterases (Hayes & Laws, 1991). Dithiocarb reduced the toxicity of methyl parathion in mice markedly, when applied 30 min before the methyl parathion. No effect was observed when dithiocarb and methyl parathion were applied simultaneously (Lange et al., 1977). Orlando et al. (1972) found that pretreatment with quinidine sulfate had an inhibitory effect on the toxic action of i.v. injection of methyl parathion in rabbits. This could be demonstrated by electrocardiography. Quinidine sulfate reduced the influence of methyl parathion on the nicotinic-and muscarinic-type receptors. The effect of methyl parathion on monoamine oxidase activity (MAO) in rat brain mitochondria was investigated by Nag & Nandi (1987). In vitro methyl parathion reduced the MAO significantly; however, in vivo , the effect was negligible. Methyl parathion is an inhibitor of malate dehydrogenase in the mitochondria of liver and skeletal muscle. There was also an inhibitory effect on plasmatic malate dehydrogenase and lactate dehydrogenase in the liver (Tripathi & Shukla, 1988). 8.10 Mode of action The mode of action of organophosphorus insecticides, such as methyl parathion, is described in Environmental Health Criteria 63 (WHO, 1986). 8.10.1 Inhibition of esterases The primary biochemical effect associated with toxicity caused by organophosphorus pesticides is inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE). The normal function of AChE is to terminate neurotransmission due to acetylcholine, liberated at cholinergic nerve endings in response to nervous stimuli. Loss of AChE activity may lead to a range of effects resulting from excessive nervous stimulation and culminating in respiratory failure and death. The chemistry of the inhibition of AChE and of many other esterases (e.g., NTE and liver carboxyesterases, which are discussed elsewhere) by these chemicals is similar and is given in schematic form in Fig. 4. Following the formation of a Michaelis complex (reaction 1), a specific serine residue in the protein is phosphorylated with loss of the leaving group X (reaction 2). Two further reactions are possible: reaction 3 (reactivation) may occur spontaneously at a rate that is dependent on the nature of the attached group and on the protein and is also dependent on the influence of pH and of added nucleophilic reagents, such as oximes, which may catalyse reactivation. Reaction 4 ("aging") involves cleavage of an R-O-P-bond with the loss of R and the formation of a charged monosubstituted phosphoric acid residue still attached to protein. The reaction is called "aging" because it is time dependent, and the product is no longer responsive to nucleophilic reactivating agents, such as some oximes. Since therapy of organophosphorus compound poisoning is, in part, dependent on the reactivating power of oximes, understanding of the "aging" reaction is important. Pseudocholinesterase (ChE), which is present in blood plasma and nervous tissue, but has no known physiological function, is inhibited by organophosphorus compounds in a similar way to AChE, but the specificity of the 2 enzymes is different. Though no toxic effect arises as a result of inhibition of pseudoChE, measures of its inhibition can be made for monitoring purposes. 8.10.2 Possible alkylation of biological macromolecules It has been shown, under laboratory conditions, that some organophosphates can react with, and alkylate, the reagent 4-nitro-benzylpyridine (Preussmann et al., 1969). The study was interpreted to imply that the in vivo alkylating potential of some pesticides was similar to that of the known mutagens, dimethyl sulfate and methyl methanesulfonate. Furthermore, Löfroth et al. (1969) derived a substrate constant (a logarithmic measure of alkylating ability) of 0.75 for dichlorvos, which is intermediate between those known for methyl and ethyl methanesulfonates. Concern over the possible mutagenic and carcinogenic potential of organophosphorus compounds on the basis of the above data was misplaced, since alternative reactions were not considered. Compared with the carbon atom of the alkyl group, the phosphorus atom is markedly more electron-deficient and susceptible to attack by nucleophiles. Analysis by Bedford & Robinson (1972) of the data of Löfroth et al. (1969) revealed that the proposed rates of alkylation by hard nucleophiles were probably combined rates of phosphorylation and alkylation, and that phosphorylation was the totally dominant reaction in the case of the hydroxide ion. The comparison with known mutagens was therefore inappropriate. Two factors detract further from the toxicological significance of the alkylation studies. The first is that mammalian tissues (plasma, liver, etc.) contain active enzymes that catalyse the phosphorylation of water by the organophosphorus esters. Viewed inversely, these enzymes (often called A-esterases) catalyse the hydrolysis of the organophosphorus esters, thereby rapidly reducing circulating levels of hazardous material. Secondly, the comparative rate of reaction of most of these pesticides with AChE is many orders greater than their rate of alkylation of the typical nucleophile 4-nitrobenzylpyridine: for dichlorvos, the ratio of rates was 1 x 107 in favour of the inhibitory phosphorylation of AChE (Aldridge & Johnson, 1977). It follows that, at low exposure levels, in vivo phosphorylation of AChE and other esterases will be the dominant reaction with negligible uncatalysed alkylation of genetic material. Indeed, no such alkylation has been detected in sensitive in vivo studies designed to check this point (Wooder et al., 1977). Some catalysed alkylations of glutathione by organosphorus compounds are known to occur in vivo , but these are essentially detoxification reactions. 8.10.3 General Following lethal amounts of methyl parathion, hypotension, bradycardia, bronchoconstriction, and bronchial fluid accumulation occur with the inability of respiratory muscles to work. Cyanosis and central respiratory depression can be observed. In less severe cases of intoxication, bradycardia, muscle rigidity, muscle hypotonia, bronchial spasm, and constriction dominate (Meyer-Jones et al., 1977). 9. EFFECTS ON MAN The only confirmed effects on humans of exposure to methyl parathion are the signs and symptoms characteristic of systemic poisoning by cholinesterase-inhibiting organophosphorus compounds, observed in case studies. The results of oral ingestion studies performed by Rider et al. (1969, 1970, 1971) suggest that manifestations of acute methyl parathion toxicity are absent in humans whose erythrocyte cholinesterase activity has been reduced to as little as 45% of their pre-exposure baselines (see section 9.1.2). The effects of methyl parathion exposure on human beings were compiled in 1976 by NIOSH. Details are given by Hayes & Laws (1991). WHO (1986) summarized the signs and symptoms of organo-phosphate insecticide poisoning as follows: (a) Muscarinic manifestations - increased bronchial secretion, excessive sweating, salivation, and lacrimation; - pinpoint pupils, bronchoconstriction, abdominal cramps (vomiting and diarrhoea); and - bradycardia. (b) Nicotinic manifestations - fasciculation of fine muscles and, in more severe cases, of the diaphragm and respiratory muscles; and - tachycardia. (c) Central nervous system manifestations - headache, dizziness, restlessness, and anxiety; - mental confusion, convulsions, and coma; and - depression of the respiratory centre. All these signs and symptoms can occur in different combinations and can vary in time of onset, sequence, and duration, depending on the chemical, dose, and route of exposure. Mild poisoning might include muscarinic and nicotinic signs only. Severe cases always show central nervous system involvement; the clinical picture is dominated by respiratory failure, sometimes leading to pulmonary oedema, due to the combination of the above-mentioned signs and symptoms. 9.1 General population exposure The general population may be exposed to air-, water-, and food-borne residues of methyl parathion as a consequence of agricultural/forestry practices, the misuse of the agent, and contamination of field crops, water, and air by off-target loss. Lisi et al. (1986, 1987) studied the allergic potential of methyl parathion in 200 persons. No significant sensitization to methyl parathion was found. 9.1.1 Acute toxicity Several cases of methyl parathion poisoning have been reported throughout the world; these have been reviewed by Hayes & Laws (1991). Human manifestations of acute poisoning by methyl parathion are comparable with those described in experimental animals (Durham & Hayes, 1962; Fazekas & Rengei, 1965; Hayes & Laws, 1991). In cases of fatal methyl parathion poisoning, gross and microscopic alterations occur in all the organs (brain, lung, heart, liver, kidneys, spleen, vascular walls, perivascular areas). Fazekas (1971) already saw alterations due to methyl parathion-poisoning, 2 h after the poisoning. Ember et al. (1970) found a high content of vitamin A in the liver in 5 cases of suicide with methyl parathion. Van Bao et al. (1974) reported an increase in chromosome aberrations in the lymphocytes of 4 patients who had suffered acute methyl parathion poisoning as a result of attempted suicide. The increase in chromosome aberrations was detected only in cell cultures carried out 1 month after their admission to hospital. No significant changes were found, compared with controls, 6 months later. 9.1.2 Effects of short- and long-term exposure, controlled human studies Five male volunteers received 3.0 mg methyl parathion per day for 28 days, then 3.5 mg methyl parathion for 28 days, and 4.0 mg methyl parathion for 43 days. No symptoms of poisoning or effects on the plasma or red blood cell cholinesterases could be noticed (Moeller & Rider, 1961). In another study, 3 groups of 5 volunteers each received 4.5 mg methyl parathion daily, for 30 days, then 5.0 g for 29 days or 5.5 mg for 28 days, followed by 6.0 mg for 29 days or 6.5 mg for 35 days, and finally 7.0 mg for 24 days. In no case was significant inhibition of the plasma or red blood cell cholinesterase activity found (Moeller & Rider, 1962). Morgan et al. (1977) studied the cholinesterase activities in 4 human volunteers, who received 2 or 4 mg methyl parathion on 5 successive days. These doses did not cause any depression of plasma and red blood cell cholinesterase activity. Rider et al. (1969) reported studies on human volunteers to determine the level of minimal toxicity of methyl parathion. For 30 days, 5 volunteers received capsules containing methyl parathion, with the dose increasing daily, and 2 received capsules containing corn oil. Depression in plasma cholinesterase activity (15%) was observed at an oral dosage of 11.0 mg per day, while, at higher dosages up to and including 19 mg per day, no significant cholinesterase depression was observed. No significant changes in the blood cell count, urine analysis, or the prothrombin times occurred, nor was there any evidence of toxic effects. After 4 weeks with daily doses of 24 mg methyl parathion, 2 out of 5 volunteers showed inhibition of plasma and red blood cell cholinesterase activities with decreases of 24 or 23% for plasma and 27 or 55% for red blood cells (Rider et al., 1970). Five volunteers received doses increasing from 14 to 20 mg methyl parathion per day, orally, for 6 days. No inhibition of the cholinesterases was found. However, doses of 28 or 30 mg methyl parathion caused a decrease in the cholinesterase activities of about 37% (Rider et al., 1971). Two male volunteers received, orally, 2 or 4 mg methyl parathion per day. No influence of methyl parathion on neurophysiological parameters was found, and there was no inhibition of the plasma or red blood cell cholinesterase activity (Rodnitzky et al., 1978). 9.2 Occupational exposure The production, formulation, handling, and use as an insecticide of methyl parathion are potential sources of exposure. Skin contact or inhalation are the main hazards for workers. The main hazard for the general population is the ingestion of contaminated food. Wind-drift during spraying may be a health risk, since Kummer & Van Sittert (1986) observed that, in a number of cases, the spraymen did not stop spraying, when it was too windy. The analysis of 375 pesticide poisonings in Bulgaria during 1965-68 showed that 82.5% of all cases were due to organophosphates. Six of the intoxications were attributed to methyl parathion. A large number of poisonings, usually mild, occurred not in applicators directly engaged in plant protection but in other agricultural workers when they entered a previously sprayed crop area for further cultivation and hand-harvesting (Kaloyanova-Simeonova, 1970). Hatcher & Wiseman (1969) reported 16 cases of methyl parathion intoxication among 118 organophosphorus insecticide poisonings of farm workers that occurred in the lower Rio Grande Valley (Texas) in 1968. Toxicity following dermal exposure was predominant. Neuropsychiatric sequelae from occupational exposure to organophosphorus pesticides have been reported (Dille & Smith, 1964). However, the patients had been exposed to other pesticides besides methyl parathion. Data on chromosomal aberrations due to methyl parathion are scarce. Data from persons who had worked with various pesticides were presented by Yoder et al., 1973 (positive finding); Rupa et al., 1989 (positive finding); and Nehéz et al., 1988 (positive finding in farm workers in the open field, but not in those in enclosed spaces like greenhouses). Van Bao et al. (1974) found chromosome aberrations in one case of an agricultural worker, accidentally exposed to methyl parathion (without exposure data). De Cassia Stocco et al. (1982) reported data from subjects exposed to methyl parathion and DDT at a formulation plant near of Sao Paulo, Brazil. No increased frequency of chromosome aberrations was found in the lymphocyte cultures of 15 healthy male workers (with blood cholinesterase level < 75% of presumably the normal mean levels), who were exposed repeatedly or long-term to methyl parathion for durations ranging from 1 week to 7 years, but who had intermittent periods of non-exposure. Richter et al. (1986) investigated the risk of exposure to methyl parathion spray drift in the workers in 3 kibbutzim. The cholinesterase levels were measured in 36 agricultural workers and 25 residents from the same kibbutzim. No effects due to the methyl parathion spray drift exposure were observed in the field workers or in the residents. 9.2.1 Epidemiological studies There are no epidemiological studies on effects related only to methyl parathion exposure. 10. PREVIOUS EVALUATIONS BY INTERNATIONAL BODIES The FAO/WHO Joint Meeting on Pesticide Residues (JMPR) evaluated methyl parathion in 1968, 1972, 1975, 1979, 1980, and 1984 (FAO/WHO, 1969, 1973, 1976, 1980, 1981 and 1985). The acceptable daily intake for man (ADI) was estimated at 0-0.02 mg/kg body weight in 1984. This was based on levels causing no toxicological effects of: - 2 mg/kg diet, equivalent to 0.1 mg/kg body weight in the rat; and - 0.3 mg/kg body weight per day in man. The FAO/WHO Codex Alimentarius Commission (FAO/WHO, 1986) recommended Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) in several food commodities, ranging from 0.05 to 0.2 mg/kg as follows: Commodity MRL (mg/kg) Cantaloupe 0.2 Cole crops 0.2 Cottonseed oil 0.05 Cucumbers 0.2 Fruit, other 0.2 Hops (dry cones) 0.05a Melons 0.2 Sugar beets 0.05a Tea (fermented and dried) 0.2 Tomatoes 0.2 a Levels at, or about, the limit of determination. 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TREATMENT OF ORGANOPHOSPHATE INSECTICIDE POISONING IN MAN (From EHC 63: Organophosphorus insecticides - a general introduction) All cases of organophosphorus poisoning should be dealt with as an emergency and the patient sent to hospital as quickly as possible. Although symptoms may develop rapidly, delay in onset or a steady increase in severity may be seen up to 48 h after ingestion of some formulated organophosphorus insecticides. Extensive descriptions of treatment of poisoning by organophosphorus insecticides are given in several major references (Kagan, 1977; Taylor, 1980; UK DHSS, 1983; Plestina, 1984) and will also be included in the IPCS Health and Safety Guides to be prepared for selected organophosphorus insecticides. The treatment is based on: (a) minimizing the absorption; (b) general supportive treatment; and (c) specific pharmacological treatment. I.1 Minimizing the absorption When dermal exposure occurs, decontamination procedures include removal of contaminated clothes and washing of the skin with alkaline soap or with a sodium bicarbonate solution. Particular care should be taken in cleaning the skin area where venepuncture is performed. Blood might be contaminated with direct-acting organophosphorus esters and, therefore, inaccurate measures of ChE inhibition might result. Extensive eye irrigation with water or saline should also be performed. In the case of ingestion, vomiting might be induced, if the patient is conscious, by the administration of ipecacuanha syrup (10-30 ml) followed by 200 ml water. This treatment is, however, contraindicated in the case of pesticides dissolved in hydrocarbon solvents. Gastric lavage (with addition of bicarbonate solution or activated charcoal) can also be performed, particularly in unconscious patients, taking care to prevent aspiration of fluids into the lungs (i.e., only after a tracheal tube has been put into place). The volume of fluid introduced into the stomach should be recorded and samples of gastric lavage frozen and stored for subsequent chemical analysis. If the formulation of the pesticide involved is available, it should also be stored for further analysis (i.e., detection of toxicologically relevant impurities). A purgative can be administered to remove the ingested compound. I.2 General supportive treatment Artificial respiration (via a tracheal tube) should be started at the first sign of respiratory failure and maintained for as long as necessary. Cautious administration of fluids is advised, as well as general supportive and symptomatic pharmacological treatment and absolute rest. I.3 Specific pharmacological treatment I.3.1 Atropine Atropine should be given, beginning with 2 mg iv and given at 15-30-min intervals. The dose and the frequency of atropine treatment varies from case to case, but should maintain the patient fully atropinized (dilated pupils, dry mouth, skin flushing, etc.). Continuous infusion of atropine may be necessary in extreme cases and total daily doses up to several hundred mg may be necessary during the first few days of treatment. I.3.2 Oxime reactivators Cholinesterase reactivators (e.g., pralidoxime, obidoxime) specifically restore AChE activity inhibited by organophosphates. This is not the case with enzymes inhibited by carbamates. The treatment should begin as soon as possible, because oximes are not effective on "aged" phosphorylated ChEs. However, if absorption, distribution, and metabolism are thought to be delayed for any reasons, oximes can be administered for several days after intoxication. Effective treatment with oximes reduces the required dose of atropine. Pralidoxime is the most widely available oxime. A dose of 1 g pralidoxime can be given either im or iv and repeated 2-3 times per day or, in extreme cases, more often. If possible, blood samples should be taken for AChE determinations before and during treatment. Skin should be carefully cleansed before sampling. Results of the assays should influence the decision whether to continue oxime therapy after the first 2 days. There are indications that oxime therapy may possibly have beneficial effects on CNS-derived symptoms. I.3.3 Diazepam Diazepam should be included in the therapy of all but the mildest cases. Besides relieving anxiety, it appears to counteract some aspects of CNS-derived symptoms that are not affected by atropine. Doses of 10 mg sc or iv are appropriate and may be repeated as required (Vale & Scott, 1974). Other centrally acting drugs and drugs that may depress respiration are not recommended in the absence of artificial respiration procedures. I.3.4 Notes on the recommended treatment I.3.4.1 Effects of atropine and oxime The combined effect far exceeds the benefit of either drug singly. I.3.4.2 Response to atropine The response of the eye pupil may be unreliable in cases of organophosphorus poisoning. A flushed skin and drying of secretions are the best guide to the effectiveness of atropinization. Although repeated dosing may well be necessary, excessive doses at any one time may cause toxic side-effects. Pulse-rate should not exceed 120/min. I.3.4.3 Persistence of treatment Some organophosphorus pesticides are very lipophilic and may be taken into, and then released from, fat depots over a period of many days. It is therefore quite incorrect to abandon oxime treatment after 1-2 days on the supposition that all inhibited enzyme will be aged. Ecobichon et al. (1977) noted prompt improvement in both condition and blood-ChEs in response to pralidoxime given on the 11th-15th days after major symptoms of poisoning appeared due to extended exposure to fenitrothion (a dimethyl phosphate with a short half-life for aging of inhibited AChE). I.3.4.4 Dosage of atropine and oxime The recommended doses above pertain to exposures, usually for an occupational setting, but, in the case of very severe exposure or massive ingestion (accidental or deliberate), the therapeutic doses may be extended considerably. Warriner et al. (1977) reported the case of a patient who drank a large quantity of dicrotophos, in error, while drunk. Therapeutic dosages were progressively increased up to 6 mg atropine iv every 15 min together with continuous iv infusion of pralidoxime chloride at 0.5 g/h for 72 h, from days 3 to 6 after intoxication. After considerable improvement, the patient relapsed and further aggressive therapy was given at a declining rate from days 10 to 16 (atropine) and to day 23 (oxime), respectively. In total, 92 g of pralidoxime chloride and 3912 mg of atropine were given and the patient was discharged on the thirty-third day with no apparent sequelae. References to Annex I. ECOBICHON, D.J., OZERE, R.L., REID, E., & CROCKER, J.F.S (1977) Acute fenitrothion poisoning. Can. Med. Assoc. J., 116: 377-379. KAGAN, JU.S. (1977) [ Toxicology of organophosphorus pesticides,] Moscow, Meditsina, pp. 111-121, 219-233, 260-269 (in Russian). PLESTINA, R. (1984) Prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of insecticide poisoning, Geneva, World Health Organization (Unpublished document VBC/84.889). TAYLOR, P. (1980) Anticholinesterase agents. In: Goodman, L.S. & Gilman, A., ed. The pharmacological basis of therapeutics, 6th ed., New York, Macmillan Publishing Company, pp. 100-119. UK DHSS (1983) Pesticide poisoning: notes for the guidance of medical practitioners, London, United Kingdom Department of Health and Social Security, pp. 41-47. VALE, J.A. & SCOTT, G.W. (1974) Organophosphorus poisoning. Guy's Hosp. Rep., 123: 13-25. WARRINER, R.A., III, NIES, A.S., & HAYES, W.J., Jr (1977) Severe organophosphate poisoning complicated by alcohol and terpentine ingestion. Arch. environ. Health, 32: 203-205. RESUME ET EVALUATION, CONCLUSIONS, RECOMMANDATIONS 1 Résumé et évaluation 1.1 Exposition Le parathion-méthyl est un insecticide organophosphoré dont la première synthèse remonte aux années 1940. Il est relativement insoluble dans l'eau, peu soluble dans l'éther de pétrole et les huiles minérales et facilement soluble dans la plupart des solvants organiques. A l'état pur, il se présente sous la forme de cristaux blancs; le parathion-méthyl technique est légèrement jaunâtre et dégage une odeur alliacée. Il est instable à la chaleur et se décompose rapidement au-dessus de pH 8. La chromatographie en phase gazeuse avec détection par ionisation de flamme alcaline (AFID) ou photométrie de flamme (FPD) est la méthode la plus couramment utilisée pour le dosage du parathion-méthyl. Les limites de détection dans l'eau vont de 0,01 à 0,1 µg/litre; dans l'air, elles vont de 0,1 à 1 ng/m3. La chromatographie en phase liquide à haute performance et la chromatographie en couche mince sont également utiles pour la recherche du parathion-méthyl. La distribution du parathion-méthyl dans l'air, l'eau, le sol et les êtres vivants dépend de plusieurs facteurs physiques, chimiques et biologiques. Les études utilisant des modèles d'écosystèmes ainsi que des modèles mathématiques montrent que le parathion-méthyl se partage principalement entre l'air et le sol dans l'environnement, une plus faible proportion se répartissant entre les végétaux et les animaux. Il ne se déplace pratiquement pas dans le sol et ni le composé initial, ni ses produits de décomposition n'atteignent normalement les eaux souterraines. Le parathion-méthyl présent dans l'air provient principalement de l'épandage de ce composé, encore qu'il puisse se volatiliser en partie lorsque l'eau qui le contient s'évapore de la surface des feuilles et du sol. Les niveaux atmosphériques de fond dans les zones agricoles vont de zéro (non décelable) à environ 70 ng/m3. Les concentrations dans l'air après épandage diminuent rapidement en trois jours pour atteindre le niveau de fond au bout d'environ neuf jours. Dans les cours d'eau, les concentrations (études de laboratoire) tombent à 80% de la concentration initiale au bout d'une heure et à 10 % au bout d'une semaine. Le parathion-méthyl demeure plus longtemps dans le sol que dans l'air ou l'eau encore que sa rétention dépende en grande partie du type de sol; dans les sols sableux, les résidus de parathion-méthyl disparaissent plus rapidement que dans le terreau. Les résidus présents à la surface des plantes ou dans les feuilles diminuent rapidement avec une demi-vie de l'ordre de quelques heures; la disparition totale du parathion-méthyl s'effectue en six à sept jours environ. L'organisme animal est capable de décomposer le parathion-méthyl et d'en éliminer les produits de dégradation en très peu de temps. Ce processus est plus lent chez les vertébrés inférieurs et les invertébrés que chez les mammifères et les oiseaux. Les facteurs de bioconcentration sont faibles et le parathion-méthyl ne s'accumule que temporairement. C'est la dégradation microbienne qui est de loin la voie la plus importante de dégradation du parathion-méthyl dans le milieu. Le composé disparaît plus rapidement sur le terrain ou dans des modèles d'écosystèmes que ne l'avaient laissé entrevoir les études de laboratoire. Cela tient au fait qu'il existe plusieurs microorganismes capables de décomposer cette substance dans diverses circonstances et dans différents biotopes. La présence de sédiments ou de surfaces végétales qui accroît les populations microbiennes, augmente la vitesse de décomposition du parathion-méthyl. Sous l'action du rayonnement ultra-violet ou de la lumière solaire, le parathion-méthyl peut subir une décomposition oxydante en paraoxon-méthyl, moins stable; après pulvérisation, le temps de demi-décomposition par le rayonnement ultra-violet est d'environ 40 heures. Toutefois, la contribution de la photolyse à l'élimination totale dans un système aquatique, n'est, selon les estimations, que de 4 %. L'hydrolyse du parathion-méthyl se produit également plus rapidement en milieu alcalin. Une forte salinité favorise aussi l'hydrolyse. En présence de sédiments fortement réducteurs, on a noté des demi-vies de quelques minutes, encore que la sorption à d'autres sédiments accroisse la stabilité du composé. Dans des villes situées au centre de zones agricoles des Etats-Unis d'Amérique, on a observé que les concentrations de parathion-méthyl dans l'air variaient avec la saison et culminaient en août ou septembre; les enquêtes ont révélé que les teneurs maximales se situaient principalement dans les limites de 100 à 800 ng/m3 au cours de la période de végétation. Dans les eaux naturelles de ces mêmes régions des Etats-Unis, on a observé des concentrations allant jusqu'à 0,46 µg/litre, les maxima étant atteints en été. Il n'existe qu'un petit nombre de publications sur les résidus alimentaires de parathion-méthyl dans le monde. Aux Etats-Unis, ces résidus se situent en général à un très faible niveau, même si quelques échantillons dépassent les limites maximales de résidus (LMR). Les études de ration totale dont il est fait état dans la littérature ne font état que de traces de résidus. C'est dans les légumes-feuilles (jusqu'à 2 mg/kg) et les légumes racines (jusqu'à 1 mg/kg) que l'on a constaté les résidus les plus élevés lors d'enquêtes sur le panier de la ménagère effectuées aux Etats-Unis entre 1966 et 1969. La préparation, la cuisson et la conservation des aliments entraînent la décomposition des résidus de parathion-méthyl, ce qui réduit encore l'exposition des consommateurs. En cas d'erreurs de manipulation du parathion-méthyl, on peut trouver des résidus plus élevés dans les légumes et les fruits crus. la production, la formulation, la manipulation et l'utilisation du parathion-méthyl comme insecticide sont les principales sources potentielles d'exposition humaine. C'est principalement par contact cutané et, dans une moindre proportion, par inhalation que les travailleurs sont exposés à cette substance. Lors d'une étude sur des ouvriers agricoles qui pulvérisaient du parathion-méthyl (les ouvriers non protégés procédant à un épandage manuel de cette substance à très bas volume), on a calculé que ces personnes absorbaient 0,4 à 13 mg de parathion-méthyl par 24 heures en se fondant sur le dosage du p-nitrophénol dans les urines. Si les ouvriers reviennent trop tôt sur les lieux après le traitement, ils se trouvent encore davantage exposés. La population générale peut être exposée à des résidus présents dans l'air, l'eau et les aliments par suite de traitements sur les cultures ou les forêts ou d'erreurs de manipulation (épandage en dehors de la zone à traiter) qui entraînent la contamination des champs, des cultures, de l'eau et de l'air. 1.2 Fixation, métabolisme et excrétion Le parathion-méthyl est facilement absorbé par toutes les voies d'exposition (orale, percutanée, respiratoire) et il se répand rapidement dans les tissus de l'organisme. Les concentrations maximales dans les divers organes ont été observées une à deux heures après le traitement. La conversion du parathion-méthyl en paraoxon-méthyl se produit dans les minutes qui suivent l'administration. Après administration de parathion-méthyl par voie intraveineuse à des chiens, on a observé une demi-vie terminale moyenne de 7,2 heures. C'est le foie qui joue le principal rôle dans le métabolisme et la détoxication du parathion-méthyl. Le mode principal de détoxication du parathion-méthyl et du paraoxon-méthyl au niveau du foie consiste en oxydation, hydrolyse et déméthylation ou désarylation en présence de glutathion réduit (GSH). Les produits de réaction sont le thiophosphate de o-méthyle et de o-nitrophényle ainsi que les acides diméthylphosphorothioïque ou diméthyl-phosphorique et le p-nitrophénol. Il est donc possible d'évaluer l'exposition en mesurant l'excrétion urinaire du p-nitrophénol. Chez des volontaires, l'excrétion urinaire de p-nitrophénol était de 60 % quatre heures après l'administration et d'environ 100 % au bout de 24 heures. Le métabolisme du parathion-méthyl joue un rôle important dans la toxicité sélective de ce composé pour les différentes espèces et l'apparition éventuelle d'une résistance. L'élimination du parathion-méthyl et de ses métabolites s'effectue principalement par la voie urinaire. Des études menées sur des souris avec du parathion-méthyl radiomarqué au 32P ont montré qu'au bout de 72 heures, 75 % de la radio-activité se retrouvaient dans les urines et jusqu'à 10 % dans les matières fécales. 1.3 Effets sur les êtres vivants dans leur milieu naturel Certains microorganismes peuvent utiliser le parathion-méthyl comme source de carbone et l'étude d'une communauté naturelle a montré que des concentrations allant jusqu'à 5 mg/litre augmentaient la biomasse et l'activité reproductrice. L'effet est positif dans le cas des bactéries et des actinomycètes; par contre, les champignons et les levures sont moins capables d'utiliser ce composé. Chez une diatomée, on a constaté une inhibition de 50 % de la croissance à une concentration d'environ 5 mg/litre. Chez des algues vertes unicellulaires, la croissance a été réduite par des concentrations comprises entre 25 et 80 µg de parathion-méthyl par litre. Les populations d'algues devenaient tolérantes au parathion-méthyl après quelques semaines d'exposition. Le parathion-méthyl est extrêmement toxique pour les invertébrés aquatiques, la CL50 étant plupart du temps comprise entre <1 µg et environ 40 µg/litre. Quelques espèces d'arthropodes sont moins sensibles. Pour la daphnie (Daphnia magna) la concentration sans effet observable est de 1,2 µg/litre. Les mollusques sont beaucoup moins sensibles, puisque leur CL50 varie de 12 à 25 mg/litre. La plupart des espèces de poissons d'eau douce ou de mer ont une CL50 comprise entre 6 et 25 mg/litre, quelques espèces étant nettement plus ou nettement moins sensibles au composé. La toxicité aiguë est comparable chez les amphibiens et les poissons. Le traitement au parathion-méthyl de mares expérimentales a permis d'en observer les effets sur l'effectif des communautés d'invertébrés aquatiques. Seul un épandage sur les étendues d'eau serait susceptible d'engendrer les concentrations nécessaires à l'apparition de ces effets et encore, seraient-ils de courte durée. Une décimation des populations d'invertébrés est donc improbable en situation réelle. En cas de mortalité chez les invertébrés, les effets ne seraient probablement pas de longue durée. Il convient dont de veiller à ne pas procéder à des épandages sur les mares, cours d'eau et lacs. Le parathion-méthyl ne doit jamais être épandu lorsque le vent souffle. Le parathion-méthyl est un insecticide non-sélectif qui détruit les espèces utiles tout autant que les ravageurs. On a fait état de mortalité parmi des abeilles à la suite d'épandages de parathion-méthyl. Ce genre d'accidents est plus grave avec le parathion-méthyl qu'avec d'autres insecticides. Les abeilles adaptées à l'Afrique supportent mieux le parathion-méthyl que les souches européennes. Le parathion-méthyl s'est révélé modérément toxique pour les oiseaux au laboratoire, la DL50 aiguë par voie orale allant de 3 à 8 mg/kg de poids corporel. Par la voie alimentaire, la CL50 allait de 70 à 680 mg/kg de nourriture. Rien n'indique que les oiseaux aient à souffrir du parathion-méthyl lorsqu'il est épandu conformément aux recommandations. On veillera tout particulièrement à l'horaire des épandages pour éviter tout effet nocif sur les abeilles. 1.4 Effets sur les animaux d'expérience et les systèmes d'épreuve in vitro La DL50 par voie orale varie chez les rongeurs de 3 à 35 mg/kg de poids corporel et la DL50 par voie percutanée, de 44 à 67 mg/kg de poids corporel. L'intoxication par le parathion-méthyl engendre les effets cholinergiques habituels des organophosphorés que l'on peut attribuer à l'accumulation d'acétylcholine au niveau des terminaisons nerveuses. La toxicité du parathion-méthyl est due à sa métabolisation en paraoxon-méthyl. Cette conversion est très rapide. Aucun signe de neuropathie retardée induite par les organophosphorés n'a été relevé. Le parathion-méthyl technique n'a aucun effet irritant sur l'oeil ni la peau. Lors d'études de toxicité à court terme utilisant diverses voies d'administration et portant sur des rats, des chiens et des lapins, on a observé une inhibition de la cholinestérase du plasma, des érythrocytes et du cerveau ainsi qu'un certain nombre de signes liés aux effets cholinergiques. Lors d'une étude d'alimentation de 12 semaines sur des chiens, on a obtenu, pour la dose sans effet nocif observable, une valeur de 5 mg/kg de nourriture (soit l'équivalent de 0,1 mg/kg de poids corporel par jour). Lors d'une étude de toxicité par voie percutanée, effectuée pendant trois semaines sur des lapins, on a obtenu une dose sans effet observable de 10 mg/kg de poids corporel par jour. Lorsque les animaux étaient exposés par la voie respiratoire pendant trois semaines, la dose sans effet observable était de 0,9 mg/m3 d'air. A la dose de 2,6 mg/m3, on n'a observé qu'une légère inhibition de la cholinestérase plasmatique. Des études de cancérogénicité et de toxicité à long terme ont été effectuées sur des souris et des rats. Pour les rats, la dose sans effet observable basée sur l'inhibition de la cholinestérase était de 0,1 mg/kg de poids corporel par jour. Les résultats de ces études n'ont fait ressortir aucun signe de cancérogénicité, ni chez les souris ni chez les rats. Dans une autre étude de deux ans effectuée sur des rats, on a toutefois relevé les signes d'un effet neurotoxique périphérique à la dose de 50 mg/kg de nourriture. Le parathion-méthyl serait capable de provoquer l'alkylation de l'ADN in vitro. La plupart des études de génotoxicité in vitro portant sur des cellules bactériennes et mammaliennes ont donné des résultats positifs, alors que six études in vivo portant sur trois systèmes d'épreuve différents ont donné des résultats ambigus. Les études portant sur la reproduction avec administration de doses toxiques (inhibition de la cholinestérase) n'ont pas produit d'effets systématiques sur la taille des portées et leur nombre, le taux de survie des petits ni la lactation. Aucun effet tératogène ou embryotoxique direct n'a été observé. 1.5 Effets sur l'homme Plusieurs cas d'intoxication aiguë par le parathion-méthyl ont été signalés. Les symptômes sont caractéristiques d'une intoxication générale par les anticholinestérasiques organophosphorés. Il s'agit d'effets nerveux cholinergiques au niveau périphérique et au niveau central qui apparaissent dans les minutes qui suivent l'exposition. En cas d'exposition par voie percutanée, les symptômes peuvent s'aggraver pendant plus d'une journée et durer plusieurs jours. Des études sur des volontaires soumis à des expositions répétées de longue durée ont montré que l'activité cholinestérasique du sang diminuait sans provoquer de manifestations cliniques. Aucun cas de neuropathie périphérique retardée induite par les organophosphorés n'a été signalé. Dans un certain nombre de cas d'exposition multiple à des pesticides et notamment à du parathion-méthyl, on a observé des séquelles neurospychiatriques. Une augmentation du nombre des aberrations chromosomiques a été signalée dans des cas d'intoxication aiguë. On ne possède aucune donnée obtenue sur l'homme qui puisse permettre d'évaluer les effets tératogènes du parathion-méthyl ou ses effets sur la reproduction. Les études épidémiologiques disponibles sont consacrées à des expositions multiples aux pesticides et il n'est pas possible d'en déduire les effets qu'une exposition de longue durée au parathion-méthyl pourrait entraîner. 2 Conclusions Le parathion-méthyl est un insecticide organophosphoré très toxique. Une exposition excessive due à la manipulation de ce produit au cours de la production, de l'utilisation ou par suite d'ingestion accidentelle ou intentionnelle peut entraîner une intoxication grave voire mortelle. Certaines formulations de parathion-méthyl peuvent, selon le cas, entraîner une irritation des yeux ou de la peau mais de toute façon, elles sont toutes facilement absorbées. On peut donc être dangereusement exposé à cet insecticide sans s'en rendre compte. Le parathion-méthyl ne subsiste pas dans l'environnement. Il ne subit pas de bioconcentration et ne se transmet pas le long de la chaîne alimentaire. Il est rapidement décomposé par un grand nombre de microorganismes et autres éléments de la faune sauvage. Cet insecticide peut provoquer des dégâts dans les écosystèmes, mais seulement en cas d'exposition excessive dues à une utilisation défectueuse ou à des déversements accidentelles. Toutefois les insectes utiles et notamment les insectes pollinisateurs peuvent souffrir des épandages de parathion-méthyl. C'est principalement par l'intermédiaire des denrées alimentaires que la population générale peut être exposée à des résidus de parathion-méthyl. Si l'on respecte les règles de bonne pratique agricole, il n'y a pas de raison que la dose journalière admissible fixée par le Comité d'experts FAO/OMS soit dépassée (0-0,02 mg/kg de poids corporel)). Il peut également y avoir exposition par voie percutanée lors de contacts accidentels avec des résidus foliaires dans des champs traités ou des zones voisines contaminées par des embruns de pesticides. Moyennant de bonnes méthodes de travail et des précautions suffisantes en matières d'hygiène et de sécurité, le parathion-méthyl de devrait pas présenter de danger pour ceux qui lui sont exposés de par leur profession. 3 Recommandations * Afin de protéger la santé et le bien-être des travailleurs et de la population générale il ne faut confier la manipulation et l'épandage du parathion-méthyl qu'à des personnes bien encadrées et bien formées qui utiliseront l'insecticide en prenant les mesures de sécurité nécessaires et se conformeront aux règles de bonne pratique en la matière. * La fabrication, la formulation, l'utilisation agricole et l'élimination du parathion-méthyl doivent être conduites avec soin afin de réduire au minimum la contamination de l'environnement. * Les travailleurs qui sont régulièrement exposés au parathion- méthyl doivent bénéficier d'un suivi médical approprié. * Afin de réduire les risques pour l'ensemble de la population, il est recommandé de ne pas revenir sur une zone traitée avant 48 heures. * Les autorités nationales devront fixer les délais pour les épandages avant récolte et les faire respecter. * En raison de la forte toxicité du parathion-méthyl, cet insecticide ne doit pas être épandu à très bas volume à l'aide de dispositifs à main. * Ne pas pulvériser sur les étendues d'eau. Choisir les horaires de manière à éviter de détruire les insectes pollinisateurs. * Les données sur l'état de santé des travailleurs exposés uniquement au parathion-méthyl (c'est-à-dire employés à la fabrication et à la formulation de cet insecticide) devront être publiées afin que l'on puisse mieux en évaluer les risques pour la santé humaine. * Des études à caractère plus définitif devront être menées sur les résidus de parathion-méthyl dans les denrées alimentaires fraîches. * Il faudrait procéder à une évaluation plus concluante de la génotoxicité du parathion-méthyl. RESUMEN Y EVALUACION, CONCLUSIONES Y RECOMENDACIONES 1 Resumen y evaluación 1.1 Exposición El metilparatión es un insecticida organofosforado que sesintetizó por primera vez en la década de 1940. Es relativamenteinsoluble en agua, poco soluble en éter de petróleo y aceitesminerales y fácilmente soluble en la mayoría de los disolventesorgánicos. El metilparatión puro se encuentra en forma de cristalesblancos; el de calidad técnica tiene un color tostado claro y olorparecido al del ajo. Es térmicamente inestable y se descompone conrapidez a un pH superior a 8. El método más común para la determinación del metilparatión esla cromatografía de gases con un detector de ionización de llama enálcali o bien con uno fotométrico de llama. Los límites de detecciónen el agua oscilan entre 0,01 y 0,1 µg/litro, y en el aire entre 0,1 y 1 ng/m3. También son útiles como métodos de detección lacromatografía líquida de alta resolución y la cromatografía en capafina. En la distribución del metilparatión en el aire, el agua, el sueloy los organismos del medio ambiente influyen varios factores físicos,químicos y biológicos. Los estudios realizados utilizando modelos de ecosistemas y laelaboración de modelos matemáticos indican que en el medioambiente el metilparatión se reparte principalmente entre el aire y elsuelo, con cantidades menores en las plantas y los animales.Prácticamente no hay desplazamiento a través del suelo, y ni elcompuesto original ni los productos derivados de su degradaciónllegan normalmente al agua subterránea. El metilparatión presente enel aire procede sobre todo del rociado del compuesto, aunque seproduce cierta volatilización con la evaporación del agua de las hojasy de la superficie del suelo. Los niveles habituales de metilparatiónen la atmósfera en las zonas agrícolas oscilan entre una cantidad nodetectable y unos 70 ng/m3. Se ha observado que las concentracionesen el aire después del rociado disminuyen con rapidez en tres días,alcanzando los niveles habituales en unos nueve días. Laconcentración en el agua fluvial (en estudios de laboratorio)descendió al 80% de la inicial después de una hora, y transcurridauna semana era del 10%. El metilparatión se mantiene en el suelomás tiempo que en el aire o el agua, aunque en la retención influyemucho el tipo de suelo; el arenoso pierde los residuos del compuestocon mayor rapidez que las margas. Los residuos de la superficie delas plantas y del interior de las hojas disminuyen rápidamente, conuna semivida del orden de unas horas; el metilparatión desaparecetotalmente en unos 6-7 días. Los animales pueden degradar el metilparatión y eliminar losproductos de degradación en un período muy breve de tiempo. Elproceso es más lento en los vertebrados inferiores y en losinvertebrados que en los mamíferos y las aves. Los factores debioconcentración son bajos y los niveles acumulados de metilparatióntransitorios. La descomposición microbiana es con diferencia el mecanismomás importante de degradación del metilparatión en el medioambiente. La desaparición del compuesto en el campo y enecosistemas utilizados como modelo es más rápida de lo que habíanpermitido suponer los estudios de laboratodeloorio. Esto se debe a lavariedad de microorganismos que son capaces de degradarlo endistintos hábitats y circunstancias. La presencia de sedimentos o desuperficies de plantas, que aumenta la población microbiana, acelerael ritmo de degradación del metilparatión. El metilparatión puede sufrir degradación oxidativa por acciónde la radiación ultravioleta o la luz solar, convirtiéndose enmetil paraoxón, que es menos estable; las películas de rociado sedegradan por acción de la radiación ultravioleta con una semivida aproximada de 40 horas. Sin embargo, se ha estimado que lacontribución de la fotolisis a la desaparición total en un sistema acuático es sólo de un 4%. También se produce hidrólisis delmetilparatión en condiciones alcalinas, en las que es más rápida. Lasalinidad elevada favorece asimismo la hidrólisis del compuesto. Ensedimentos muy reductores se registraron semividas de unos minutos, aunque el metilparatión es más estable cuando está adsorbido sobreotros sedimentos. En las ciudades situadas en el centro de las zonas agrícolas delos Estados Unidos, las concentraciones de metilparatión en el airevariaban con las estaciones y alcanzaban el punto más alto en agostoo septiembre; los niveles máximos registrados durante los estudios fueron fundamentalmente del orden de 100-800 ng/m3 durante elperíodo vegetativo. Las concentraciones en el agua natural de laszonas agrícolas de los Estados Unidos llegaron a 0,46 µg/litro, conlos niveles más altos en el verano. Son muy pocos los informespublicados en todo el mundo sobre los residuos de metilparatión enlos alimentos. En los Estados Unidos, se han notificado en generalniveles muy bajos de residuos de metilparatión en los productos alimenticios, con un pequeño número de muestras aisladas porencima de los límites máximos de residuos (LMR). En todos losestudios publicados sobre la alimentación sólo se detectaron niveles ínfimos de metilparatión. En las encuestas sobre la cesta de lacompra realizadas en los Estados Unidos entre 1966 y 1969, lascantidades mayores de residuos de metilparatión se encontraron en lashortalizas de hoja (hasta 2 mg/kg) y en las de raíz (hasta 1 mg/kg). En la preparación, cocción y almacenamiento de los alimentos se descomponen los residuos de metilparatión, reduciéndose ulteriormente la exposición humana. Las frutas y hortalizas sinelaborar pueden contener más residuos después de un uso indebidodel producto. La producción, formulación, manipulación y uso delmetilparatión como insecticida pueden ser, en principio, fuente deexposición para las personas. Las principales vías de exposición delos trabajadores son el contacto cutáneo y, en menor medida, lainhalación. En un estudio sobre personas encargadas del rociado en fincas (trabajadores no protegidos que utilizaban rociadores manuales devolumen ultrabajo), a partir del p-nitrofenol excretado en la orina secalculó una ingestión de 0,4-13 mg de metilparatión cada 24 horas. También se puede sufrir exposición si se entra en los cultivosdemasiado pronto después de tratarlos. La población general puede estar expuesta a residuos demetilparatión presentes en el aire, el agua y los alimentos como consecuencia de prácticas agrícolas y forestales con un uso indebidodel producto, que provoca la contaminación de los campos, loscultivos, el agua y el aire debido al rociado parcial fuera del objetivo. 1.2 Ingestión, metabolismo y excreción El metilparatión se absorbe fácilmente por todas las vías de exposición (oral, cutánea, respiratoria) y se distribuye con rapidez por los tejidos del cuerpo. Se detectaron concentraciones máximas en diversos órganos 1-2 horas después del tratamiento. Después de la administración, la transformación del metilparatión en metilparaoxón se produce en unos minutos. En perros se determinó una semivida terminal media de 7,2 horas tras la administración intravenosa de metilparatión. El hígado es el principal órgano de metabolización y desintoxicación. El metilparatión o el metilparaoxón se destoxifican en el hígado sobre todo mediante oxidación, hidrólisis y desmetilación o desarilación con glutatión reducido. Los productos de la reacción son el O-metil O-p-nitrofenilfosfotioato, o bien los ácidos dimetilfosfotioico o dimetilfosfórico, y el p-nitrofenol. Por consiguiente, se puede estimar la exposición midiendo la excreción urinaria de p-nitrofenol; en voluntarios humanos fue del 60% en cuatro horas y prácticamente del 100% en 24 horas. El metabolismo del metilparatión es importante para la toxicidad específica selectiva y la aparición de resistencia. Le eliminación de esta sustancia y sus productos derivados tiene lugar primordialmente por la orina. En estudios realizados en ratones con 32P-metilparatión (marcado radiactivamente) se observó un 75% de radiactividad en la orina y hasta un 10% en las heces después de 72 horas. 1.3 Efectos en los seres vivos del medio ambiente Los microorganismos pueden utilizar el metilparatión como fuente de carbono, y en el estudio de una comunidad natural se vio que concentraciones de hasta 5 mg/litro aumentaban la biomasa y la actividad reproductora. En las bacterias y los actinomicetos se observó un efecto positivo del metilparatión, mientras que los hongos y las levaduras tenían menor capacidad para utilizar la sustancia. Con una concentración aproximada de 5 mg/litro se produjo una inhibición del 50% del crecimiento de una diatomea. Concentraciones de metilparatión comprendidas entre 25 y 80 µg/litro redujeron el crecimiento celular de las algas clorofíceas unicelulares. Las poblaciones de algas adquirieron tolerancia tras varias semanas de exposición. El metilparatión es muy tóxico para los invertebrados acuáticos, oscilando casi siempre la CL50 entre < 1 µg y alrededor de 40 µg/litro. Hay un pequeño número de especies de artrópodos que son menos susceptibles. El nivel sin efecto para Daphnia magna es de 1,2 µg/litro. Los moluscos son mucho menos susceptibles, con CL50 entre 12 y 25 mg/litro. La mayoría de las especies de peces, tanto de agua dulce como de mar, tienen una CL50 de 6 a 25 mg/litro, pero hay un pequeño número de especies cuya sensibilidad al metilparatión es considerablemente mayor o menor. La toxicidad aguda para los anfibios es análoga a la de los peces. Se han observado los efectos sobre poblaciones en las comunidades de invertebrados acuáticos de estanques experimentales tratados con metilparatión. Las concentraciones necesarias para producir esos efectos se alcanzarían sólo con un rociado excesivo de las masas de agua, e incluso en este caso durarían muy poco tiempo. Por consiguiente, en condiciones normales no es probable que se observen efectos sobre las poblaciones. Tampoco los es que la acción letal sobre los invertebrados acuáticos provoque efectos duraderos. Hay que tener cuidado para evitar un rociado excesivo de estanques, ríos y lagos al utilizar el metilparatión. Nunca se debe efectuar la operación con viento. El metilparatión es un insecticida no selectivo que mata especies beneficiosas tan fácilmente como las plagas. Se ha notificado la muerte de abejas después de su aplicación. Sus efectos sobre esta especie fueron más graves que los de otros insecticidas. Las abejas africanizadas son más tolerantes al metilparatión que las razas europeas. El metilparatión fue moderadamente tóxico para las aves en estudios de laboratorio, con una DL50 oral aguda comprendida entre 3 y 8 mg/kg de peso corporal. La CL50 en la dieta osciló entre 70 y 680 mg/kg de alimentos. No hay indicios de que las aves puedan verse afectadas negativamente con la utilización recomendada en el campo. Hay que tener el máximo cuidado al programar el rociado con metilparatión, a fin de evitar los efectos adversos sobre las abejas. 1.4 Efectos en los animales de experimentación y en sistemas de prueba in vitro Los valores de la DL50 del metilparatión por vía oral en roedores oscilan entre 3 y 35 mg/kg de peso corporal, y los valores por vía cutánea entre 44 y 67 mg/kg de peso corporal. El envenenamiento por metilparatión provoca los signos colinérgicos habituales de los organofosfatos, atribuidos a la acumulación de acetilcolina en la terminaciones nerviosas. El metilparatión adquiere la toxicidad al metabolizarse a metilparaoxón, en un proceso que es muy rápido. No se han observado indicios de neuropatía retardada inducida por compuestos organofosforados. Se ha comprobado que el metilparatión de calidad técnica no tiene potencial de irritación primaria de los ojos o la piel. En estudios de toxicidad de corta duración, utilizando diversas vías de administración en ratas, perros y conejos, se observó inhibición de la colinesterasa del plasma, los eritrocitos y el cerebro, así como signos colinérgicos conexos. En un estudio de alimentación durante 12 semanas con perros, el nivel sin efectos adversos observados (NOAEL) fue de 5 mg/kg de la dieta (equivalente a 0,1 mg/kg de peso corporal al día). En un estudio de toxicidad cutánea de tres semanas en conejos, el nivel sin efectos observados (NOEL) fue de 10 mg/kg de peso corporal al día. La exposición por inhalación durante tres semanas dio como resultado un NOEL de 0,9 mg/m3 de aire. Con 2,6 mg/m3 solamente se observó una ligera inhibición de la colinesterasa del plasma. Se realizaron estudios de toxicidad/teratogenicidad de larga duración con ratones y ratas. El NOEL para las ratas fue de 0,1 mg/kg de peso corporal al día, basado en la inhibición de la colinesterasa. No hay pruebas de carcinogenicidad en ratones y ratas tras una exposición de larga duración. Sin embargo, en otro estudio de dos años con ratas se detectó un efecto neurotóxico periférico con una dosis de 50 mg/kg de la dieta. Se ha informado que el metilparatión tiene propiedades alquilizantes del ADN in vitro. Los resultados de la mayoría de los estudios de genotoxicidad in vitro con células tanto bacterianas como de mamífero fueron positivos, mientras que en seis estudios in vivo, utilizando tres sistemas de prueba distintos, los resultados fueron equívocos. En estudios de reproducción con niveles de dosificación tóxicos (inhibición de la colinesterasa), no se observaron efectos constantes sobre el tamaño de la camada, el número de partos, la tasa de supervivencia de las crías y el rendimiento de la lactación. No se detectó ningún efecto teratogénico o embriotóxico primario. 1.5 Efectos en la especie humana Se han registrado varios casos de intoxicación aguda por metilparatión. Los signos y síntomas son los característicos de la intoxicación sistémica por compuestos organofosforados inhibidores de la colinesterasa. Cabe mencionar entre ellos las manifestaciones del sistema nervioso colinérgico periférico y central, que aparecen apenas unos minutos después de la exposición. En el caso de la exposición cutánea, la gravedad de los síntomas puede ir en aumento durante más de un día y pueden durar varios días. Los estudios con voluntarios sometidos a exposiciones repetidas de larga duración parecen indicar que hay una disminución de la actividad de la colinesterasa de la sangre, sin manifestaciones clínicas. No se ha informado de ningún caso de neuropatía periférica retardada inducida por compuestos organofosforados. Se han descrito secuelas neuropsiquiátricas en casos de exposición múltiple a plaguicidas, entre ellos el metilparatión. En casos de intoxicaciones agudas, se ha detectado un aumento de las aberraciones cromosómicas. No se dispone de datos relativos al metilparatión en la especie humana que permitan evaluar los efectos teratogénicos y sobre la reproducción. Los estudios epidemiológicos disponibles se refieren a una exposición múltiple a plaguicidas, y no es posible evaluar los efectos de una exposición de larga duración al metilparatión. 2 Conclusiones El metilparatión es un éster organofosfórico muy tóxico, utilizado como insecticida. Una exposición excesiva al manejarlo durante su fabricación y uso o por ingestión accidental o intencionada puede ocasionar una intoxicación grave o letal. Las formulaciones de metilparatión unas veces son irritantes y otras no para los ojos o la piel, pero se absorben fácilmente. Por consiguiente, pueden producirse exposiciones peligrosas sin advertirlo. El metilparatión no se mantiene mucho tiempo en el medio ambiente, no se produce bioconcentración y no se desplaza a través de la cadena alimentaria. Lo degradan con rapidez numerosos microorganismos y otros tipos de seres vivos presentes en el medio ambiente. Este insecticida puede ocasionar daños a ecosistemas solamente en casos de una exposición muy intensa causada por el uso indebido o escapes accidentales; sin embargo, el rociado con metilparatión representa un riesgo para los insectos polinizadores y otros que son beneficiosos. La exposición de la población general a los residuos del metilparatión tiene lugar fundamentalmente por medio de los alimentos. Si se siguen buenas prácticas agrícolas, no se supera la ingesta diaria admisible (0-0,02 mg/kg de peso corporal) establecida por la FAO/OMS. Puede haber exposición cutánea accidental por contacto con residuos foliares en campos rociados o en zonas adyacentes a los lugares que se están rociando, como consecuencia de pérdidas del producto que no llegan a su objetivo. Con buenas prácticas de trabajo, medidas higiénicas y precauciones de seguridad, no es probable que el metilparatión represente un riesgo para las personas con exposición profesional. 3 Recomendaciones * Para salvaguardar la salud y el bienestar de los trabajadores y de la población general, el manejo y la aplicación del metilparatión sólo se debería encomendar, bajo una atenta supervisión, a personas bien capacitadas que se ajusten a las medidas de seguridad adecuadas y utilicen el producto de acuerdo con las buenas prácticas de aplicación. * Se debe prestar particular atención a la fabricación, la formulación, el uso agrícola y la eliminación del metilparatión, a fin de reducir al mínimo la contaminación del medio ambiente. * Los trabajadores regularmente expuestos deberían ser objeto de vigilancia y exámenes médicos adecuados. * A fin de reducir al mínimo el riesgo para todas las personas, se recomienda esperar 48 horas después del rociado antes de entrar de nuevo en cualquier zona tratada. * Las autoridades nacionales deberían establecer intervalos sin tratamiento antes de la recolección y obligar a respetarlos. * A la vista de la elevada toxicidad del metilparatión, se debe excluir este producto de la aplicación mediante rociado de volumen ultrabajo aplicado manualmente. * No se han de rociar masas de agua. Hay que elegir los momentos de la aplicación de manera que se evite la muerte de insectos polinizadores. * Se debe hacer pública la información relativa al estado de salud de los trabajadores expuestos exclusivamente al metilparatión (es decir, en la fabricación, la formulación), con objeto de evaluar mejor los riesgos de este producto químico para la salud humana. * Deberían llevarse a cabo estudios más definitivos sobre los residuos de metilparatión en los alimentos frescos. * Debería realizarse una evaluación genotóxica más definitiva del metilparatión.
See Also: Methyl parathion (ICSC) Parathion methyl (PIM 666) Parathion-Methyl (PDS)