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Short-term toxicity to fish

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Description of key information

96h-LC50 = 29 mg/L (measured concentration, freshwater) for Pimephales promelas (OECD 203)

96h-LC50 = 4.1 mg/L (measured concentration, marine water) for Cyprinodon variegatus (ASTM E-35 1980)

Key value for chemical safety assessment

LC50 for freshwater fish:
29 mg/L
LC50 for marine water fish:
4.1 mg/L

Additional information

Numerous studies are available investigating the acute toxicity of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) to freshwater and marine fish (see table 1), since SDS is an economically important surfactant and was frequently used as reference substance in toxicity tests. The data set is comprised of several publications with acceptable quality and validity focusing on standard and non-standard species as well as one study report investigating the acute toxicity to the standard species Pimephales promelas (Rawlings 2004). The study was performed according to OECD guideline 203. Fish were exposed in a flow-through system to five test concentrations up to 48 mg/L nominal concentration, corresponding to 40 mg/L measured concentration. Mortality of fish was evaluated every 24 hours throughout the 96h test period. The 96h-LC50 value is determined to be 29 mg/L based on measured concentration. This study is considered to be the most reliable study since it was performed under flow-through conditions and is very well documented as the study was performed for regulatory purposes. Although this effect value is not the lowest observed in the data set it was used for hazard assessment since (i) this study is rated as the most comprehensive and reliable one and (ii) the remaining data set is biased because for most additional species tested several effect values are existing in the literature but always the lowest obtained value per species is listed and no averaging was performed. This was done because the data set is primarily presented to statistically assess the general susceptibility of fish to SDS in comparison to aquatic invertebrates and algae using a conservative approach. To use the effect value from Rawlings (2004) is considered to be acceptable for hazard assessment since classification and labeling as well as PNEC derivation is not based on fish acute toxicity and since this value adequately represents the toxicity (= harmful to fish) of SDS to most freshwater fish species (see table 1).

Based on the profound data set it can be concluded that either marine species are in general more susceptible or SDS is more toxic in the marine environment. The lowest effect value for a standard species was obtained in an acute toxicity test with Cyprinodon variegatus according to the ASTM E-35 (1980) method (Roberts et al. 1982). Fish were exposed to five test concentrations in brackish water (salinity 10 ‰) under static conditions. The 96h-LC50 value is determined to be 4.1 mg/L based on measured concentrations.

Table 1: Acute toxicty of SDS to different freshwater and marine fish species. Publications showing the lowest obtained effect values for a single species are listed.

Species

Exposure time

EC/LC50 [mg/L]

marine/freshwater

Reference

Oncorhynchus mykiss

96h

4.62

fw

Fogels and Sprague 1977

Pimephales promelas

Pimephales promelas (fry)

96h

96h

29.0

10.20

fw

Rawlings 2004

Newsome 1982

Lepomis macrochirus

96h

4.50

fw

Bishop and Perry 1981

Danio rerio

96h

7.97

fw

Fogels and Sprague 1977

Rasbora daniconius

96h

6.30

fw

Madhyastha et al. 1979

Heteropneustes fossilis

96h

11.20

fw

Verma et al. 1980

Cichlasoma nigrofasciatum

96h

16.10

fw

Newsome 1982

Cynopoecilus melanotaenia

96h

14.90

fw

Arenzon et al. 2003

Oreochromis mossambicus

96h

19.70

fw

Chen et al. 2001

Oryzias latipes

96h

12.50

fw

Chen et al. 2001

Ctenopharyngodon idella

96h

7.70

fw

Susmi et al. 2010

Poecilia reticulata

96h

13.50

fw

Newsome 1982

Channa punctatus

96h

19.50

fw

Verma et al. 1980

Piaractus brachypomus

96h

11.29

fw

Reátegui-Zirena 2012

Carassius auratus

96h

28.4

fw

Newsome 1982

Jordanella floridae

96h

8.10

fw

Fogels and Sprague 1977

Menida beryllina

96h

9.5

m

Hemmer et al. 2010

Thalassoma pavo

96h

5.23

m

Brunelli et al. 2008

Cyprinodon variegatus

96h

 4.10

m

Roberts et al. 1982

Dicentrarchus labrax

96h

7.34

m

Mariani et al. 2006

Menidia menidia

96h

2.80

m

Roberts et al. 1982

Gambusia holbrooki

96h

15.10

m

Nunes et al. 2005

Sparus aurata

96h

6.10

m

Ribelles et al. 1995

Scophthalmus maximus

96h

7.50

m

Rosety-Rodriguez et al. 2002