• 1 Universiti Putra Malaysia


Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) is usually used as an inhibitive assay for insecticides. A lesserknown
property of AChE is its inhibition by heavy metals. In this work, we evaluate an AChE
from brains of Clarias batrachus (catfish) exposed to wastes from aquaculture industry as an
inhibitive assay for heavy metals. We discovered that the AChE was inhibited completely by
Hg2+, Ag2+, Pb2+, Cu2+, Cd2+, Cr6+ and Zn2+ during initial screening. When tested at various
concentrations, the heavy metals exhibited exponential decay type inhibition curves. The
calculated IC50 (mg/L) for the heavy metals Ag2+, Cu2+, Hg2+, Cr6+ and Cd2+ were 0.088, 0.078,
0.071, 0.87 and 0.913, respectively. The IC50 for these heavy metals are comparable, and some
are lower than the IC50 values from the cholinesterases from previously studied fish. The assay
can be carried out in less than 30 minutes at ambient temperature.