Biotransformation of flubendazole and fenbendazole and their effects in the ribwort plantain (Plantago lanceolata)
Abstract Although veterinary anthelmintics represent an important source of environmental pollution, the fate of anthelmintics and their effects in plants has not yet been studied sufficiently. The aim of our work was to identify metabolic pathways of the two benzimidazole anthelmintics fenbendazole (FBZ) and flubendazole (FLU) in the ribwort plantain ( Plantago lanceolata L.). Plants cultivated as in vitro regenerants were used for this purpose. The effects of anthelmintics and their biotransformation products on plant oxidative stress parameters were also studied. The obtained results showed that the enzymatic system of the ribwort plantain was able to uptake FLU and FBZ, translocate them in leaves and transform them into several metabolites, particularly glycosides. Overall, 12 FLU and 22 FBZ metabolites were identified in the root, leaf base and leaf top of the plant. Concerning the effects of FLU and FBZ, both anthelmintics in the ribwort plantain cells caused significant increase of proline concentration (up to twice), a well-known stress marker, and significant decrease of superoxide dismutase activity (by 50%). In addition, the activities of four other antioxidant enzymes were significantly changed after either FLU or FBZ exposition. This could indicate a certain risk of oxidative damage in plants influenced by anthelmintics, particularly when they are under other stress conditions. Highlights Ribwort plantain is able to take up FLU and FBZ and translocate them to the above-ground part of the plants. Ribwort plantain is able to metabolize FLU and FBZ. Metabolites differ in roots and leaves and their concentration change in time. Anthelmintics cause oxidative stress and decreased antioxidant defense in ribwort plantain. Graphical abstract [DISPLAY OMISSION]
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