Istituto di Scienze Marine     
Faimali M., Garaventa F., Piazza V., Greco G., Corrà C., Magillo F., Pittore M., Giacco E., Gallus L., Falugi C., Tagliafierro G. Swimming speed alteration of larvae of Balanus amphitrite as a behavioural end-point for laboratory toxicological bioassays. In: Marine Biology, vol. 149 (1) pp. 87 - 96. Springer, 2006.
In this study, we investigate the feasibility of developing a new behavioural toxicity bioassay (Swimming Speed Alteration test—SSA test) with larvae of Balanus amphitrite (Crustacea Cirripedia). This organism was chosen as a model for different reasons: it is present all over the world, simple to be reared, easily available, and also because barnacles play an important role in the coastal ecosystem. In addition, all the operations related to the rearing and test execution are comparatively cheap. This bioassay was performed with several classes of chemical pollutants (antifouling biocides, neurotoxic pesticides, and heavy metals) and with environmental samples (sediment elutriates). The measurement of swimming speed, by means of video-graphic techniques, proved to be a valid instrument in highlighting the sub-lethal levels of toxicity caused by the different tested samples. In conclusion, the SSA test is able to provide in a biomonitoring program a good behavioural integrated output, which is also repeatable, sensitive, easily interpretable, and truly representative of a broad range of toxic compounds and environmental toxic matrices which are, generally, very complex and difficult to analyse. For all of these reasons, it could be proposed as a non-specific behavioural end-point.
URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00227-005-0209-9
Subject toxicity bioassay
SSA test
Balanus amphitrite
chemical pollutants

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