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Effects of clotrimazole on the pigment composition of marine periphyton communities for use in predictive ecological mixture toxicity assessment

Authors Tobias Porsbring
Thomas Backhaus
Åsa Arrhenius
Sara Brosché
Per Johansson
Hans Blanck
Published in SETAC Europe 16th Annual Meeting, The Hague, The Netherlands
Publication year 2006
Published at Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences
Language en
Subject categories Persistent organic compounds, Environmental toxicology, Marine ecology


Clotrimazole is a pharmaceutic fungicide classified as persistent and toxic according to EU Technical Guidance Document, and reaches the marine environment mainly from municipal waste water treatment plants together with several other pollutants. In a project to assess mixture toxicity of pharmaceuticals on microbial communities, clotrimazole effects on the development of periphyton were measured in two independent SWIFT tests in 2004 and 2005. Microalgal communities were precolonised in the Gullmar fjord on the west coast of Sweden on 1.5 cm2 glass discs. Following a 96h incubation in a concentration series of clotrimazole, periphyton pigment profiles were analysed using HPLC, and effects were calculated as Bray-Curtis dissimilarity indices. In both tests, a clotrimazole concentration of 11 microg/l had a significant effect on pigment composition with a NOEC of 3.45 microg/l (nominal). This indicates an approximately 5 times higher clotrimazole toxicity to algae than single species data, although comparisons to PEC values suggests a low risk for marine algae. However, the importance of clotrimazole for the risks of mixtures is further researched.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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