Environmental Monitoring and Assessment

, Volume 148, Issue 1–4, pp 307–314 | Cite as

A test battery approach for ecotoxicological characterization of Mar Piccolo sediments in Taranto (Ionian Sea, Southern Italy)

  • M. Narracci
  • R. A. Cavallo
  • M. I. Acquaviva
  • E. Prato
  • F. Biandolino


The eco-toxicological approach is based on the determination of the toxic effects on organisms pertaining to various ecosystems and supplies information about the contaminants mixture bioavailability, in complex matrices as sediments. The use of a single species for a correct evaluation of the toxicity levels can be reductive, concerning the complexity of the ecosystem. In this work we have used species with various evolutionary levels and habitats; in particular, three different organisms: two amphipods species (Corophium insidiosum and Gammarus aequicauda) and one bacterium Vibrio fischeri. We have compared these organisms for the evaluation of sediments toxicity in four sites along the Ionian coast (Taranto, Italy); in particular, three sites in Mar Piccolo and one site in Mar Grande. The toxicity of sediments measured using Vibrio fischeri (Microtox® Solid Phase Test protocol) has been compared with the mortality of the two amphipods. Both in polluted (Mar Piccolo sites) and in non-polluted environments (Mar Grande), the results of the three biological tests carried out converge into the evaluation of sediments quality monitored. In conclusion, these preliminary results show the potential use of Corophium insidiosum and Gammarus aequicauda as test species for a correct evaluation of sediments quality, together with Vibrio fischeri.


Ecotoxicology Toxicity test Corophium insidiosum Gammarus aequicauda Vibrio fischeri 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Narracci
    • 1
  • R. A. Cavallo
    • 1
  • M. I. Acquaviva
    • 1
  • E. Prato
    • 1
  • F. Biandolino
    • 1
  1. 1.CNR–Istituto Ambiente Marino CostieroTarantoItaly

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