Interaction of Cd and Zn toxicity for Folsomia candida Willem (Collembola: Isotomidae) in relation to bioavailability in soil

Authors

  • Cornelis A. M. Van Gestel,

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    1. Department of Ecology and Ecotoxicology, Vrije Universiteit, De Boelelaan 1087, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands
    • Department of Ecology and Ecotoxicology, Vrije Universiteit, De Boelelaan 1087, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands
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  • Paul J. Hensbergen

    1. Department of Ecology and Ecotoxicology, Vrije Universiteit, De Boelelaan 1087, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands
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Abstract

The use of toxicity tests in which each chemical is tested separately is inadequate for assessing the potential risk of complex mixtures of chemicals for soil ecosystems. In the present study, the effects of Cd and Zn, alone or in combination, on the survival, growth, and reproduction of the collembolan Folsomia candida were determined after 2, 4, and 6 weeks of exposure in an artificial soil. The water solubility of Cd in the soil was significantly increased by the presence of Zn, whereas Cd did not affect the water solubility of Zn. In spite of this, uptake of Cd or Zn in the animals was not affected by the presence of the other metal, suggesting that water solubility does not determine the uptake of these metals in F. candida. For both Cd and Zn, reproduction was the most sensitive parameter, with 50% effective concentration (EC50) values of 51 and 683 μg/g dry soil, respectively, after 6 weeks. These values corresponded with internal concentrations of 44 μg Cd/g and 97 μg Zn/g dry body weight, respectively, while corresponding water-soluble EC50s were 0.13 μg Cd/g and 14 μg Zn/g dry soil, respectively. Although a proper comparison of the effects of mixtures of the metals with the effects of the individual metals was sometimes hampered by the nonsimilarity of dose-response relationships, it may be concluded that the effects of the mixture of Cd and Zn on the growth of F. candida are antagonistic (EC50 significantly greater than 1.0 toxic unit), while the effects on reproduction are additive (EC50 = 1.0 toxic unit). Similar conclusions could be drawn for EC50s expressed on the basis of total and water-soluble soil concentrations as well as on the basis of internal concentrations in the animals. Analysis of the combined effects of Cd and Zn at the 10% effective concentration level did not change these conclusions.

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