Jan 13, 2015

Impact of an urban multi-metal contamination gradient: metal bioaccumulation and tolerance of river biofilms collected in different seasons

Aquatic Toxicology
Juliette FaburéLise C Fechner


The aim of this study was to investigate the repeatability and seasonal variability of the biological response of river biofilms chronically exposed to a multi-metal pressure in an urban contamination gradient. Biofilms were grown on immersed plastic membranes at three sites on the Seine river upstream (site 1) and downstream (sites 2 and 3) from Paris (France). They were collected in four different seasons (autumn, spring, summer and winter). Biofilm tolerance to Cu, Ni, Pb and Zn was measured using a PICT (Pollution-Induced Community Tolerance) approach with a previously developed short-term toxicity test based on β-glucosidase (heterotrophic) activity. Metal concentrations in the river and also in the biofilm samples (total and non-exchangeable bioaccumulated metals) were also monitored. Biofilm-accumulated metal concentrations reflected the increase of the multi-metal exposure along the urban gradient. These concentrations were strongly correlated with dissolved and particulate organic carbon and with the total metal fraction in the river water, which recalls the significant influence of the environmental parameters on metal uptake processes in river biofilms. Overall, natural biofilms allow monitoring water quality by inte...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Biochemical Pathway
Tissue Membrane
Aquatic Organisms
Impacted Tooth
Toxicity Tests
Spearman Correlation Test
Seasonal Variation

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