Expert Opinion on Environmental BiologyISSN: 2325-9655

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Sea Urchin Bioassays in Toxicity Testing: II. Sediment Evaluation

Sea Urchin Bioassays in Toxicity Testing: II. Sediment Evaluation

Bioassays on sea urchin early life stages have been used extensively in evaluating the pollution impact on seawater, coastal sediments, and other matrices as soil, freshwater sediment, and industry effluents. Here we review the literature in this field to determine whether testing whole sediment vs. pore water or elutriates by sea urchin bioassays provides a better estimation of actual risk. The present review of our results and from independent groups suggests that testing whole sediment as opposed to other substrates is better suitable, especially when a topographic evaluation of sediment toxicity is required, such as in enclosed bays or in lagoons. Unrestricted to marine sediment, the available methods in testing whole sediment provide an opportunity to test inland, freshwater or terrestrial materials, useful when answering complex mixture questions common to various monitoring and research programs, or for environmental assessment evaluations, or for remediation/ mitigation planning exercises.

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