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  • Ecology
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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Chemosphere, July 2013, Vol.92(5), pp.483-489
    Description: ► The invasive aquatic amphipod is more tolerant to lambda-cyhalothrin than the native one. ► Predation success on Baetis nymphs is substantially higher for than ► may contribute substantially to leaf litter decomposition. Invasive species are considered as one of the major threats for biodiversity worldwide. The Ponto-Caspian species , for instance, spread throughout continental Europe and was recorded for the first time also within Lake Constance in 2003. Although is a highly competitive species it was not capable of replacing the native completely in this ecosystem, especially in the riparian zones of the highly agriculturally used island “Reichenau”. As differences in pesticide sensitivity between both amphipod species may explain their distribution, the present study assessed the implication of the highly toxic pyrethroid lambda-cyhalothrin, which is authorized for application in the Lake Constance region, assuming the invasive species being more sensitive than the native one. However, both the feeding activity bioassays, which measured the leaf consumption over 7 d ( = 20), as well as the predation bioassay, which measured the predation rate upon nymphs in concert with the feeding activity on leaf material over 96 h ( = 13), revealed an up to 5-fold higher tolerance of towards lambda-cyhalothrin. These results suggest the investigated insecticide not being the trigger for the observed distribution pattern of both amphipod species. Hence, other factors like the diversity of habitat structures or the levels of ammonia may have facilitated the coexistence. Nevertheless, the present study uncovered a high leaf-shredding efficacy of the invasive species suggesting that its role in the leaf decomposition process may have been underestimated in the past.
    Keywords: Functional Feeding Group ; Insecticide ; Leaf Litter Decomposition ; Ecosystem Function ; Predator–Prey Interaction ; Freshwater Biodiversity ; Chemistry ; Ecology
    ISSN: 0045-6535
    E-ISSN: 1879-1298
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: Chemosphere, 2011, Vol.82(3), pp.355-361
    Description: Advanced oxidation technologies such as ozonation have been proposed to improve removal efficiency of micropollutants during wastewater treatment. In a meta-analysis of peer-reviewed literature, we found no ecotoxicological effects of wastewater ozonation on invertebrates ( = 82), but significant adverse effects on bacteria ( = 24) and fish ( = 5). As information on functional endpoints or trophic interactions is lacking, we applied a bioassay relating to leaf litter decomposition to fill this gap. Leaf discs exposed to ozone-treated wastewater with a high (1.04 mg O (mg DOC) , = 49) ozone concentration were significantly preferred by an aquatic detritivore, , over discs conditioned in wastewater not treated with ozone. This effect might have been mediated by reduced bacterial and elevated fungal biomass, and appears to be the first demonstration of wastewater ozonation impacts on invertebrates and an associated ecosystem process. In accordance with the food-choice trials, chemical analyses revealed significantly decreased concentrations of organic micropollutants in wastewater treated with ozone at high concentrations. Thus, food-choice trials as applied here hold promise to assess environmental effects of advanced oxidation technologies in wastewater treatment and appear to be a valuable complement to the ecotoxicological toolbox in general.
    Keywords: Food Choice ; Indirect Effects ; Gammaridae ; Litter Decomposition ; Biocides ; Psychoactive Drugs ; Chemistry ; Ecology
    ISSN: 0045-6535
    E-ISSN: 1879-1298
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  • 3
    In: Freshwater Biology, December 2016, Vol.61(12), pp.2185-2196
    Description: Ecotoxicology is often criticised for its simplistic approach, which does not normally consider the complexity of field conditions. Simple laboratory experiments can still be useful, however, especially for assessing effects of emerging stressors such as nanoparticles, which exhibit fates, exposure profiles and modes of action substantially different from those of traditional chemicals. Here we argue that it is important to understand the potential effects of environmental conditions (e.g. UV radiation, dissolved organic matter, chemical stressors) on the fate and ecotoxicological potential of nanoparticles by using simple and well‐controlled experiments, while aiming to mimic realistic environmental conditions as closely as possible. The observation that increasingly complex test systems may yield lower effect thresholds for nanoparticles than standardised tests suggests that current approaches require modification. Specifically, research is encouraged on interactions among trophic levels, community composition and ecosystem and evolutionary processes, so that effects observed in complex environmental settings can be explained mechanistically. We highlight recent discoveries in ecotoxicology and ecology that suggest nanoparticle‐induced consequences on evolutionary and ecosystem processes as well as their potential transfer across ecosystem boundaries. These insights may encourage further research on nanoparticle effects informed by ecological theory.
    Keywords: Environmental Variables ; Mechanism Of Toxicity ; Mixture Toxicity ; Nanomaterial ; Trophic Interaction
    ISSN: 0046-5070
    E-ISSN: 1365-2427
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  • 4
    Language: English
    In: PLoS ONE, 2011, Vol.6(5), p.e20112
    Description: The production and use of nanoparticles (NP) has steadily increased within the last decade; however, knowledge about risks of NP to human health and ecosystems is still scarce. Common knowledge concerning NP effects on freshwater organisms is largely limited to standard short-term (≤48 h) toxicity tests, which lack both NP fate characterization and an understanding of the mechanisms underlying toxicity. Employing slightly longer exposure times (72 to 96 h), we found that suspensions of nanosized (∼100 nm initial mean diameter) titanium dioxide (nTiO 2 ) led to toxicity in Daphnia magna at nominal concentrations of 3.8 (72-h EC 50 ) and 0.73 mg/L (96-h EC 50 ). However, nTiO 2 disappeared quickly from the ISO-medium water phase, resulting in toxicity levels as low as 0.24 mg/L (96-h EC 50 ) based on measured concentrations. Moreover, we showed that nTiO 2 (∼100 nm) is significantly more toxic than non-nanosized TiO 2 (∼200 nm) prepared from the same stock suspension. Most importantly, we hypothesized a mechanistic chain of events for nTiO 2 toxicity in D. magna that involves the coating of the organism surface with nTiO 2 combined with a molting disruption. Neonate D. magna (≤6 h) exposed to 2 mg/L nTiO 2 exhibited a “biological surface coating” that disappeared within 36 h, during which the first molting was successfully managed by 100% of the exposed organisms. Continued exposure up to 96 h led to a renewed formation of the surface coating and significantly reduced the molting rate to 10%, resulting in 90% mortality. Because coating of aquatic organisms by manmade NP might be ubiquitous in nature, this form of physical NP toxicity might result in widespread negative impacts on environmental health.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Biology ; Chemistry ; Earth Sciences ; Materials Science ; Medicine ; Chemistry ; Public Health And Epidemiology ; Marine And Aquatic Sciences ; Ecology ; Critical Care And Emergency Medicine ; Science Policy ; Biochemistry ; Non-clinical Medicine
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 5
    Language: English
    In: Chemosphere, 2011, Vol.85(10), pp.1563-1567
    Description: ► Effects of nTiO and ambient UV-irradiation affect representatives of detrital food webs. ► Accumulation of nTiO at the bottom of the test vessel seems to affect ecotoxicity. ► nTiO and ambient UV-irradiation increases ecotoxicity due to the formation of ROS. Production and use of engineered nanoparticles, such as titanium dioxide nanoparticles (nTiO ), is increasing worldwide, enhancing their probability to enter aquatic environments. However, direct effects of nTiO as well as ecotoxicological consequences due to the interactions of nTiO with environmental factors like ultraviolet (UV) irradiation on representatives of detrital food webs have not been assessed so far. Hence, the present study displayed for the first time adverse sublethal effects of nTiO at concentrations as low as 0.2 mg L on the leaf shredding amphipod both in presence and absence of ambient UV-irradiation following a 7-d exposure. In absence of UV-irradiation, however, the effects seemed to be driven by accumulation of nTiO at the bottom of the test vessels to which the gammarids were potentially exposed. The adverse sublethal and lethal effects on gammarids caused by the combined application of nTiO and ambient UV-irradiation are suggested to be driven by the formation of reactive oxygen species. In conclusion, both the accumulation of nTiO at the bottom of the test vessel and the UV induced formation of reactive oxygen species clearly affected its ecotoxicity, which is recommended for consideration in the environmental risk assessment of nanoparticles.
    Keywords: Nanoparticle ; Titanium Dioxide ; Ultraviolet Irradiation ; Gammarus Fossarum ; Accumulation ; Reactive Oxygen Species ; Chemistry ; Ecology
    ISSN: 0045-6535
    E-ISSN: 1879-1298
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  • 6
    Language: English
    In: Environmental Pollution, January 2015, Vol.196, pp.276-283
    Description: Interactions with environmental parameters may alter the ecotoxicity of nanoparticles. The present study therefore assessed the (in)direct effects of nanoparticulate titanium dioxide (nano-TiO ) towards , considering nano-TiO 's photocatalytic properties at ambient UV-intensities. Gammarids' habitat selection was investigated using its feeding preference on leaf discs either exposed to or protected from UV-irradiation in presence of nano-TiO as proxy (  = 49). UV-irradiation alone induced a significant preference for UV-protected habitats, which was more pronounced in simultaneous presence of nano-TiO . This behaviour may be mainly explained by the UV-induced formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) by nano-TiO . Besides their direct toxicity, ROS may have lowered the leaf-quality in UV-exposed areas contributing (approximately 30%) to the observed behavioural pattern. Since the predicted no effect concentration of nano-TiO in combination with UV-irradiation falls below the predicted environmental concentration this study underpins the importance of considering environmental parameters during the risk assessment of nanoparticles. Results revealed for the first time a PNEC of nano-TiO falling below the PEC indicating a substantial risk for aquatic ecosystems already nowadays.
    Keywords: Gammarus ; Uv-Irradiation ; Interaction Effect ; Reactive Oxygen Species ; Behavioural Response ; Engineering ; Environmental Sciences ; Anatomy & Physiology
    ISSN: 0269-7491
    E-ISSN: 1873-6424
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  • 7
    Language: English
    In: Chemosphere, July 2014, Vol.107, pp.13-22
    Description: Quantitative information on the processes leading to the retention of plant protection products (PPPs) in surface waters is not available, particularly for flow-through systems. The influence of aquatic vegetation on the hydraulic- and sorption-mediated mitigation processes of three PPPs (triflumuron, pencycuron, and penflufen; log 3.3–4.9) in 45-m slow-flowing stream mesocosms was investigated. Peak reductions were 35–38% in an unvegetated stream mesocosm, 60–62% in a sparsely vegetated stream mesocosm (13% coverage with ), and in a similar range of 57–69% in a densely vegetated stream mesocosm (100% coverage). Between 89% and 93% of the measured total peak reductions in the sparsely vegetated stream can be explained by an increase of vegetation-induced dispersion (estimated with the one-dimensional solute transport model OTIS), while 7–11% of the peak reduction can be attributed to sorption processes. However, dispersion contributed only 59–71% of the peak reductions in the densely vegetated stream mesocosm, where 29% to 41% of the total peak reductions can be attributed to sorption processes. In the densely vegetated stream, 8–27% of the applied PPPs, depending on the log values of the compounds, were temporarily retained by macrophytes. Increasing PPP recoveries in the aqueous phase were accompanied by a decrease of PPP concentrations in macrophytes indicating kinetic desorption over time. This is the first study to provide quantitative data on how the interaction of dispersion and sorption, driven by aquatic macrophytes, influences the mitigation of PPP concentrations in flowing vegetated stream systems.
    Keywords: Pesticide ; Plant Protection Product ; Dispersion ; Sorption ; Vegetated Stream Mesoscosms ; Tracer ; Chemistry ; Ecology
    ISSN: 0045-6535
    E-ISSN: 1879-1298
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  • 8
    In: Journal of Applied Ecology, April 2015, Vol.52(2), pp.310-322
    Description: The application of fungicides is considered an indispensable measure to secure crop production. These substances, however, may unintentionally enter surface waters via run‐off, potentially affecting the microbial community. To assess such risks adequately, authorities recently called for suitable test designs involving relevant aquatic micro‐organisms. We assessed the structural and functional responses of leaf‐associated microbial communities, which play a key role in the breakdown of allochthonous leaf material in streams, towards the inorganic fungicides copper (Cu) and elemental sulphur (S). These substances are of particular interest as they are authorized for both conventional and organic farming in many countries of the world. We used the food choice of the amphipod shredder Gammarus fossarum (indicative for micro‐organism‐mediated leaf palatability) as well as microbial leaf decomposition as functional endpoints. Moreover, the leaf‐associated microbial communities were characterized by means of bacterial density, fungal biomass and community composition facilitating mechanistic understanding of the observed functional effects. While Gammarus preferred Cu‐exposed leaves over unexposed ones, microbial leaf decomposition was reduced by both Cu and S (up to 30%). Furthermore, Cu exposure decreased bacterial densities (up to 60%), stimulated the growth of leaf‐associated fungi (up to 100%) and altered fungal community composition, while S did not affect any of the assessed structural endpoints. Synthesis and applications. We observed both structural and functional changes in leaf‐associated microbial communities at inorganic fungicide concentrations realistic for surface water bodies influenced by conventional and organic farming. Our data hence justify a careful re‐evaluation of the environmental safety of the agricultural use of these compounds. Moreover, inclusion of an experimental design similar to the one used in this study in lower tier environmental risk assessments of antimicrobial compounds may aid to safeguard the integrity of aquatic microbial communities and the functions they provide. We observed both structural and functional changes in leaf‐associated microbial communities at inorganic fungicide concentrations realistic for surface water bodies influenced by conventional and organic farming. Our data hence justify a careful re‐evaluation of the environmental safety of the agricultural use of these compounds. Moreover, inclusion of an experimental design similar to the one used in this study in lower tier environmental risk assessments of antimicrobial compounds may aid to safeguard the integrity of aquatic microbial communities and the functions they provide.
    Keywords: Antagonistic Effect ; Antimicrobial ; Aquatic Hyphomycetes ; Bacteria ; Biofilm ; Ecosystem Functioning ; Environmental Risk Assessment ; Heavy Metal ; Leaf Litter Breakdown ; Mixture Toxicity
    ISSN: 0021-8901
    E-ISSN: 1365-2664
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  • 9
    Language: English
    In: Ecotoxicology, 2011, Vol.20(2), pp.466-473
    Description: We assessed possible ecotoxicological implications of ozone application to secondary treated wastewater from a municipal wastewater treatment plant on Gammarus fossarum , an aquatic leaf shredding amphipod. Our 10-week study exposed G. fossarum populations to ozone-treated, non-ozone treated wastewater, or tap water in replicated outdoor flow-through stream microcosms. Feeding activity, an indicator for organic matter decomposition, of amphipod populations exposed to ozone treated wastewater was significantly higher compared to those exposed to non-ozone treated wastewater (repeated measure ANOVA, p  = 0.0002, df  = 44). Also the population size was at the end of the experiment with approximately 150% significantly ( t -test, p  = 0.0059, n  = 4) increased in ozone treated wastewater compared to non-ozone treated wastewater. Additionally, chlorophyll- a concentration, an indicator for algal biomass, was significantly higher in ozone treated wastewater (repeated measure ANOVA, p  = 0.0404, df  = 65). Thus, from an ecotoxicological viewpoint, we conclude that ozonation may improve wastewater quality, which should translate into positive ecological outcomes in the receiving waters. However, because ozonation also can cause toxic transformation products, the process may best be considered on a case-by-case basis.
    Keywords: Gammarus ; Ozone ; Wastewater ; Population ; Feeding activity ; Algae ; Advanced oxidation technology
    ISSN: 0963-9292
    E-ISSN: 1573-3017
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  • 10
    Language: English
    In: Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety, 2011, Vol.74(5), pp.1203-1209
    Description: Teflubenzuron, a chitin synthesis inhibitor was used in a two-generation test with (Insecta) to assess effects over a full life cycle from the first-instar larvae in the parental (P) generation until emergence in the subsequent F1 generation. Sediment spiked with teflubenzuron ranging from 10 to 390.6 μg/kg sediment dry weight (dw) was used. EC -values for fecundity and fertility were 112.7 and 74.5 μg/kg dw, respectively. Significant adverse effects were observed compared to the solvent control for emergence rate ( 〈0.01) and also for developmental rate. No observed effect concentrations values were lower for emergence rate in the F1 generation (62.5 μg/kg dw) than in the P generation (100 μg/kg dw), demonstrating that the F1 generation was more affected than the P generation. Thus, this two-generation test may help detecting population level effects as an amendment to the risk assessment for chronic exposures to endocrine disrupting compounds.
    Keywords: Teflubenzuron ; Csi ; Chironomus Riparius ; Two-Generation Test ; Population-Level Effects ; Ecology ; Public Health
    ISSN: 0147-6513
    E-ISSN: 1090-2414
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