Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Lydy, Michael


Pyrethroid insecticides applied on crops and in urban areas are being found in aquatic ecosystems due to natural processes, such as run-off. Although highly toxic to invertebrates and fish, populations of Hyalella azteca have become resistant to some of these compounds, which pose risks to not only their populations, but higher trophic level populations via bioaccumulation (in this thesis, the Inland silverside (Menidia beryllina)). Concurrently, the impact of global climate change (GCC) is impacting environmental water parameters, such as temperature and salinity. The objective of this thesis was to analyze the relationship between varying water parameters due to GCC on the fate of permethrin (a type of pyrethroid) in resistant H. azteca (by measuring toxicokinetic rates) and in M. beryllina (by measuring bioaccumulation after consuming permethrin-dosed resistant H. azteca). Permethrin bioconcentration testing used two distinct populations (Mosher Slough and Escondido Creek) of pyrethroid-resistant H. azteca and showed that temperature and salinity affected toxicokinetic rates. Statistical differences in metabolite formation rates (km) across temperatures were found between and within populations. Salinity also exhibited statistical differences in the elimination of parent compound (kep). No statistically significant differences in uptake rates (ku) were found for either population. In the M. beryllina testing, the ability for the fish to bioaccumulate permethrin via a dietary route of exposure was confirmed, contradicting previous findings. Statistically significant bioaccumulation was found across salinities, whereas no statistically significant temperature effects were observed. With the predicted increased use of pyrethroids over the course of the next century, the emergence of resistant populations of H. azteca may increase, simultaneously increasing the risk for bioaccumulation by higher trophic species. With rates of biotransformation in H. azteca affected by changing water parameters due to GCC change, the ratio of parent and metabolite compound transferred to fish will also be altered. Pyrethroid metabolites in fish act as endocrine disruptors rather than inhibit nerve function like the parent compound, which can significantly affect fish development. Overall, this thesis demonstrates important potential effects of GCC on the rates and biological transfer of pyrethroids by aquatic species, and the potential combined effects of these multiple stressors on two trophic levels of aquatic organisms.




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