Because of the medical and veterinary importance of ticks and the wide use of synthetic chemical substances such as permethrin (active ingredient of Advantage® Max3 - Bayer)for their control, this study evaluated the effects of different concentrations (206, 1031 and 2062 ppm) of the acaricide on the salivary glands of Rhipicephalus sanguineus semi-engorged females. Results showed that permethrin is a potent substance that acts morpho-physiologically in the tick glandular tissue, causing changes in the acini shape intense vacuolation in acinar cells, and disruption of the tissue by cell death process, with subsequent formation of apoptotic bodies, especially at higher concentrations, thus precluding the accurate identification of different types of acini. Importantly, it is demonstrated that permethrin acts on salivary gland tissue, as well as affecting the nervous system, accelerating the process of glandular degeneration, and interfering with the engorgement process of female ticks, preventing them from completing the feeding process.
Currently, the most efficient and widely used method of tick control still is the treatment with acaricides, especially permethrin (active ingredient of the Advantage, Max3, Bayer), a pyrethroid with neurotoxic action. Due to the wide use of this acaricide in the control of the tick Rhipicephalus sanguineus, this study carried out laboratorial procedures to determine the LC(50) (lethal concentration fifty) of permethrin in semi-engorged females of R. sanguineus. Based on the result of 14 dilutions of permethrin in distilled water and later Probit analysis, the LC(50) of permethrin for R. sanguineus was 2062 ppm (1549-2675 ppm). This work can be used as a protocol with other chemicals, to determinate the LC(50), basic procedure for studies of control, resistance and behavior of ticks treated with acaricides, especially the brown dog tick R. sanguineus. Also, the knowledge of the LC(50) provides information on the potency of chemicals, the sensitivity of Arthropods to them and even estimates on pest control.
The present study performed an analysis about the effects of andiroba seed oil (Carapa guianensis) in the ovary of Rhipicephalus sanguineus semi-engorged females; once, there are few studies about the action of natural products on the reproductive system, a vital organ for the biological success of this animal group. The results showed that andiroba oil is a potent natural agent which causes significant structural changes in the oocytes, such as the emergence of large vacuolated cytoplasmic regions, reduction in the number of yolk granules, changes in the shape of the cells, as well as impairment of genetic material. In addition, the ovary epithelium showed severe morphological changes, such as extreme structural disorganization, with highly vacuolated cells and picnotic nuclei, forming an amorphous mass. This study showed also that oocytes (mainly in the initial stages of development) and the ovary epithelium of R. sanguineus females subjected to different concentrations of andiroba oil presented morphological changes which became more numerous and intense as the concentration of the product increased. Based on the results, it can be inferred that although the defense mechanisms are developed by oocytes to recover the cellular integrity (presence of autophagic vacuoles), these cells are not able to revert the damage caused by this product. Thus, it can be concluded that although the damages caused to the oocytes by andiroba oil are comparatively less severe than the ones caused by synthetic acaricides, this product can be considered a potent natural agent that reduce and/or prevent the reproduction of R. sanguineus females, with the advantage of not causing environmental impact such as synthetic chemical acaricides.
Studies on the molecular bases of the neurotoxic action of acaricides are found in the literature; but there are no studies of this action on the nervous system of ticks at the cellular level. The present study describes the morphological and cytochemical changes in the synganglion of Rhipicephalus sanguineus semi-engorged females exposed to different concentrations of permethrin, a pyrethroid with recognized neurotoxic action. Permethrin induced the degeneration of the synganglion through a process of apoptosis involving autophagy, characterized by the condensation and margination of the chromatin, formation of blebs in the nuclear envelope and fragmentation of the nucleus, loss of shape of neural cells and integrity of cellular membrane, cytoplasmic shrinkage, and lower levels of acid phosphatase in the nervous tissue as the concentration of permethrin increased. This study provided further evidence of the neurotoxic action of permethrin, which impairs the metabolism of R. sanguineus nervous systems, and consequently the physiology of other systems, dependent on the neural control. These results provide cytochemical and histological confirmation of the neurotoxic action of permethrin, previously inferred from molecular and tick behavioral evidence.
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