Ecotoxicology

, Volume 22, Issue 2, pp 263–270 | Cite as

Hormesis on life-history traits: is there such thing as a free lunch?

Article

Abstract

The term “hormesis” is used to describe dose–response relationships where the response is reversed between low and high doses of a stressor (generally, stimulation at low doses and inhibition at high ones). A mechanistic explanation is needed to interpret the relevance of such responses, but there does not appear to be a single universal mechanism underlying hormesis. When the endpoint is a life-history trait such as growth or reproduction, a stimulation of the response comes with costs in terms of resources. Organisms have to obey the conservation laws for mass and energy; there is no such thing as a free lunch. Based on the principles of Dynamic Energy Budget theory, we introduce three categories of explanations for hormesis that obey the conservation laws: acquisition (i.e., increasing the input of energy into the individual), allocation (i.e., rearranging the energy flows over various traits) and medication (e.g., the stressor is an essential element or acts as a cure for a disease or infection). In this discussion paper, we illustrate these explanations with cases where they might apply, and elaborate on the potential consequences for field populations.

Keywords

Hormesis Energy budget Mechanisms Life-history traits Trade off 

References

  1. Alda Álvarez O, Jager T, Marco Redondo E, Kammenga JE (2006a) Physiological modes of action of toxic chemicals in the nematode Acrobeloides nanus. Environ Toxicol Chem 25:3230–3237CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Alda Álvarez O, Jager T, Nuñez Coloa B, Kammenga JE (2006b) Temporal dynamics of effect concentrations. Environ Sci Technol 40:2478–2484CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Baturo W, Lagadic L, Caquet T (1995) Growth, fecundity and glycogen utilization in Lymnaea palustris exposed to atrazine and hexachlorobenzene in freshwater mesocosms. Environ Toxicol Chem 14:503–511Google Scholar
  4. Belz RG, Cedergreen N, Duke SO (2011) Herbicide hormesis—can it be useful in crop production? Weed Res 51:321–332CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Calabrese EJ, Baldwin LA (2002) Defining hormesis. Hum Exp Toxicol 21:91–97CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Calow P (1991) Physiological costs of combating chemical toxicants: ecological implications. Comp Biochem Physiol C 100:3–6CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Ducrot V, Péry ARR, Lagadic L (2010) Modelling effects of diquat under realistic exposure patterns in genetically differentiated populations of the gastropod Lymnaea stagnalis. Philos Trans R Soc B 365:3485–3494CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Forbes VE (2000) Is hormesis an evolutionary expectation? Funct Ecol 14:12–24CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Gerhard GS (2001) Caloric restriction in nonmammalian models. J Anti-Aging Med 4:205–213CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Hall SR, Becker C, Cáceres CE (2007) Parasitic castration: a perspective from a model of dynamic energy budgets. Integr Comp Biol 47:295–309CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hammers-Wirtz M, Ratte HT (2000) Offspring fitness in Daphnia: is the Daphnia reproduction test appropriate for extrapolating effects on the population level? Environ Toxicol Chem 19:1856–1866Google Scholar
  12. Hansen FT, Forbes VE, Forbes TL (1999) Effects of 4-n-nonylphenol on life-history traits and population dynamics of a polychaete. Ecol Appl 9:482–495CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Höss S, Weltje L (2007) Endocrine disruption in nematodes: effects and mechanisms. Ecotoxicology 16:15–28CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Jager T, Klok C (2010) Extrapolating toxic effects on individuals to the population level: the role of dynamic energy budgets. Philos Trans R Soc B 365:3531–3540CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Jager T, Selck H (2011) Interpreting toxicity data in a DEB framework: a case study for nonylphenol in the marine polychaete Capitella teleta. J Sea Res 66:456–462CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Jager T, Crommentuijn T, Van Gestel CAM, Kooijman SALM (2004) Simultaneous modeling of multiple endpoints in life-cycle toxicity tests. Environ Sci Technol 38:2894–2900CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Jager T, Vandenbrouck T, Baas J, De Coen WM, Kooijman SALM (2010) A biology-based approach for mixture toxicity of multiple endpoints over the life cycle. Ecotoxicology 19:351–361CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Kendig EL, Le HH, Belcher SM (2010) Defining hormesis: evaluation of a complex concentration response phenomenon. Int J Toxicol 29:235–246CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Kooijman SALM (Acc.) Waste to hurry: dynamic energy budgets explain the need of wasting to fully exploit blooming resources. Oikos (accepted for publication)Google Scholar
  20. Kooijman SALM (2001) Quantitative aspects of metabolic organization: a discussion of concepts. Philos Trans R Soc B 356:331–349CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Kooijman SALM, Bedaux JJM (1996) Analysis of toxicity tests on Daphnia survival and reproduction. Water Res 30:1711–1723CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Mushak P (2007) Hormesis and its place in nonmonotonic dose–response relationships: some scientific reality checks. Environ Health Perspect 115:500–506CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Saiz E, Movilla J, Yebra L, Barata C, Calbet A (2009) Lethal and sublethal effects of naphthalene and 1,2-dimethylnaphthalene on naupliar and adult stages of the marine cyclopoid copepod Oithona davisae. Environ Pollut 157:1219–1226CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Sousa T, Domingos T, Kooijman SALM (2008) From empirical patterns to theory: a formal metabolic theory of life. Philos Trans R Soc B 363:2453–2464CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Stibor H (1992) Predator induced life-history shifts in a freshwater cladoceran. Oecologia 92:162–165CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Thayer KA, Melnick R, Burns K, Davis D, Huff J (2005) Fundamental flaws of hormesis for public health decisions. Environ Health Perspect 113:1271–1276CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. van der Schalie WH, Gentile JH (2000) Ecological risk assessment: implications of hormesis. J Appl Toxicol 20:131–139CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Van Leeuwen IMM, Vera J, Wolkenhauer O (2010) Dynamic energy budget approaches for modelling organismal ageing. Philos Trans R Soc B 365:3443–3454CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Weltje L, vom Saal FS, Oehlmann J (2005) Reproductive stimulation by low doses of xenoestrogens contrasts with the view of hormesis as an adaptive response. Hum Exp Toxicol 24:431–437CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Winner RW, Keeling T, Yeager R, Farrell MP (1977) Effect of food type on acute and chronic toxicity of copper to Daphnia magna. Freshw Biol 7:343–349CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Zimmer EI, Jager T, Ducrot V, Lagadic L, Kooijman SALM (2012) Juvenile food limitation in standardized tests—a warning to ecotoxicologists. Ecotoxicology 21:2195–2204Google Scholar
  32. Zonneveld C, Kooijman SALM (1989) Application of a dynamic energy budget model to Lymnaea stagnalis (L.). Funct Ecol 3:269–278CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Theoretical BiologyVU University AmsterdamAmsterdamthe Netherlands
  2. 2.INRA, Equipe Ecotoxicologie et Qualité des Milieux Aquatiques, UMR985 Ecologie et Santé des EcosystèmesRennesFrance

Personalised recommendations