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A novel “Integrated Biomarker Response” calculation based on reference deviation concept


Multi-biomarker approaches are used to assess ecosystem health and identify impacts of environmental stress on organisms. However, exploration of large datasets by environmental managers represents a major challenge for regulatory application of this tool. Several integrative tools were developed to summarize biomarker responses. The aim of the present paper is to update calculation of the “Integrated Biological Response” (IBR) described by Beliaeff and Burgeot (Environ Toxicol Chem 21:1316–1322, 2002) to avoid weaknesses of this integrative tool. In the present paper, a novel index named “Integrated Biological Responses version 2” based on the reference deviation concept is presented. It allows a clear discrimination of sampling sites as for the IBR, but several differences are observed for contaminated sites according to up- and downregulation of biomarker responses. This novel tool could be used to integrate multi-biomarker responses not only in large-scale monitoring but also in upstream/downstream investigations.

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This work was supported by the French Ministry of Ecology and Sustainable Development (Programme 181—DRC43 and Programme 190 post-grenelle), the European Regional Development Fund in the framework of the INTERREG IV A France (Channel)–England program (DIESE project), and the French Office for Water and Aquatic Environment (ONEMA).

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Correspondence to Wilfried Sanchez.

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Responsible editor: Philippe Garrigues

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Sanchez, W., Burgeot, T. & Porcher, J. A novel “Integrated Biomarker Response” calculation based on reference deviation concept. Environ Sci Pollut Res 20, 2721–2725 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-012-1359-1

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  • Biomarkers
  • Data analysis
  • Graphic tools
  • Three-spined stickleback