The use of microbiotests for assessing the influence of the dilution medium quality on the acute toxicity of chemicals and effluents
The influence of the dilution medium quality on the ecotoxicological response of test organisms using microbiotests was studied. The toxicity of reference toxicants (potassium dichromate, zinc sulfate, phenol) and of a landfill leachate and a process water discharged from a metal finishing plant was assessed in various dilution media including standard test media, 3 mineral waters and 28 river waters. The tests used were the Rotoxkit™ with the freshwater rotifer Brachionus calyciflorus, the Thamnotoxkit™ with the crustacean Thamnocephalus platyurus, and the Lumistox® with Vibrio flscheri. The river and mineral waters generally induced a lower toxicity of reference toxicants compared to the standard media. Hardness associated with Mg and the Ca/Mg ratio might explain in most cases the attenuation of toxicity by natural dilution media (i.e. river waters). With the landfill leachate and the process water, the effects of dilution waters on the acute toxicity were significant but not consistent, i.e. increase or decrease of toxicity was observed for the same sample, depending on the type of dilution water used.
KeywordsZinc Toxicity Phenol Chromium Attenuation
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