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EC number: 231-847-6 | CAS number: 7758-98-7
see Executive summary
The assessment of polluted soils is often made difficult by the presence of a mixture of toxicants. In this study the authors try to analyse the effects of mixture of three heavy metals, cadmium, copper and zinc, on the growth of earthworms,Aporrectodea caliginosa. Laboratory toxicity tests were conducted in which worms were exposed, over a period of 6 weeks, to sulphate salts of metals mixed into a natural soil. EC50s and EC10s were estimated for each metal separately following a log-togistic curve fitting of growth versus exposure concentration. Cadmium was the most toxic metal followed by copper and zinc; relative toxicities on a molecular basis were approximately Cd:Cu:Zn = 1:2:10. Based on a single metal EC50s, a mixture of one-third of the concentrations of three metals was prepared to cover the whole effect range and effects of the mixture were evaluated against toxic units derived from the separate metal tests. The EC50of the mixture was not significantly different from unit (1.33 toxic units). It may be concluded that the effect of mixture of metals on the growth of earthworm can be described by relative addition of concentrations, although there was a tendency for antagonism.
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