Absorption, Accumulation, and Elimination of Pesticides by Aquatic Organisms

  • Fumio Matsumura
Part of the Environmental Science Research book series (ESRH, volume 10)


Absorption, accumulation and elimination of pesticidal compounds were studied by using equilibrium type model ecosystems. Various factors such as the amount of pesticides, size of ecosystem, temperature, physical chemical characteristics of the pesticides, etc. were studied in relation to the rate of pesticide pick up by test organisms. The design of the model is important inasmuch as it greatly influences the outcome of pesticide accumulation studies. The pattern of bioaccumulation of pesticides is compound specific, and it appears to be possible to select certain chemicals as “benchmarks” (e.g. DDT) to arrive at relative figures for potencies for bioaccumulation. In the case of complex model ecosystems involving several biological materials, the levels of pesticides in each organism are determined by “competition” among groups of biomass for available pesticides, in addition to the “foodchain” accumulation. The rate of desorption (elimination) of pesticides appears to be species-specific. The final level of pesticides in any given species is determined by these two opposing processes: i.e. absorption and elimination reactions.


Lake Sediment Aquatic Organism Test Organism Model Ecosystem Brine Shrimp 
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© Plenum Press, New York 1977

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  • Fumio Matsumura

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