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The Influence of Dietary Cadmium on Changes in the Midgut Mass Related to the Mass of Gypsy Moth Larvae

The Influence of Dietary Cadmium on Changes in the Midgut Mass Related to the Mass of Gypsy Moth Larvae

Milena Vlahovic*, Dragana Matic, Marija Mrdakovic, Larisa Ilijin, Anja Grcic, Aleksandra Filipovic, Jelica Lazarevic and Vesna Peric-Mataruga

Department of Insect Physiology and Biochemistry, Institute for Biological Research, “Sinisa Stankovic”, National Institute of Republic of Serbia, University of Belgrade, Despot Stefan Blvd 142, Belgrade, Serbia.

* Corresponding author:


Cadmium pollution is becoming an increasing problem, especially in parts of the world that have developed industries. To consider the potentially harmful effects of cadmium, we need to examine changes at all different levels of biological organization. The main goal of this study was to detect a possible change in the percentage of midgut mass relative to larval mass (PMM) and determine the plasticity of this trait and the correlations between midgut enzymes and PMM under stress conditions. Fourth-instar larvae were exposed to acute and chronic effects of two cadmium concentrations, 10 and 30 μg Cd/g dry food, as well as a three-day recovery from chronic treatments. PMM is also an indirect indicator of food consumption and was found to be significantly reduced compared to control in both acute effects and chronic treatment at 30 μg and its three-day recovery. The PMM reduction during acute treatments is a consequence of cadmium action, while in chronic treatment, the genetic factor (egg mass) plays a crucial role in the change of PMM. According to the index of plasticity, distinct phenotypes were not produced. Significant correlations were shown between PMM and trypsin (Tryp) and leucine aminopeptidases (LAP) at acute and chronic treatment with higher cadmium concentrations, while significant correlations between proteases and PMM were detected at lower metal concentrations (Acute10 and Chronic10 and 30 μg Cd/g dry food). In contrast to chronic treatment, egg masses respond more uniformly by reducing PMM during the short-term effect of cadmium. Finally, we can conclude that, as an addition to biochemical and molecular research, PMM can be used for studying the cadmium effects to gain a better insight into the state of the organism under stress conditions.

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Pakistan Journal of Zoology


Pakistan J. Zool., Vol. 56, Iss. 1, pp. 01-501


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