, Volume 32, Issue 1, pp 289–297 | Cite as

The toxicity of copper nitrate solutions toPolycelis nigra

Part I. The toxicity — Concentration relationship
  • Theodore White


Previous work relevant to the topic is discussed and the determination of the survival times ofPolycelis nigra in copper nitrate solutions of concentrations 0.5 N to 0.0001 N is described. The resultant data together with the curves constructed from it is considered in relation to data obtained by observation of the behaviour of the animals in the toxic solutions and a hypothesis is propounded to account for the toxicity of the solutions. This latter is assumed to depend on a primary toxic effect due to adsorption of copper by the protoplasmic colloids, accompanied by a secondary lethal effect arising from the presence of osmotic forces. The conjunction of the two factors causes the toxic mechanism to fall into two cycles prevailing above and below the point at which the toxic solutions are isotonic with the tissue fluids of the animal, and rendered apparent by appropriate plotting of the data.


Copper Nitrate Toxic Effect Survival Time Resultant Data 
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Copyright information

© Verlag von Gebrüder Borntraeger 1939

Authors and Affiliations

  • Theodore White
    • 1
  1. 1.The Zoology DepartmentUniversity College of WalesAberystwyth

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