Thousands of tons of neonicotinoids are widely used around the world as broad-spectrum systemic insecticides and veterinary drugs. Researchers originally thought that neonicotinoids exhibited low mammalian toxicity. However, following their widespread use, it became increasingly evident that neonicotinoids could have various toxic effects on vertebrates and invertebrates. The primary focus of this review is to summarize the research progress associated with oxidative stress as a plausible mechanism for neonicotinoid-induced toxicity as well as neonicotinoid metabolism. This review summarizes the research conducted over the past decade into the production of reactive oxygen species, reactive nitrogen species, and oxidative stress as aresult of neonicotinoid treatments, along with their correlation with the toxicity and metabolism of neonicotinoids. The metabolism of neonicotinoids and protection of various compounds against neonicotinoid-induced toxicity based on their antioxidative effects is also discussed. This review sheds new light on the critical roles of oxidative stress in neonicotinoid-induced toxicity to nontarget species.


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