Pyrethroids pp 137-165 | Cite as

Ecotoxicology of Synthetic Pyrethroids

Part of the Topics in Current Chemistry book series (TOPCURRCHEM, volume 314)


In this chapter we review the ecotoxicology of the synthetic pyrethroids (SPs). SPs are potent, broad-spectrum insecticides. Their effects on a wide range of nontarget species have been broadly studied, and there is an extensive database available to evaluate their effects. SPs are highly toxic to fish and aquatic invertebrates in the laboratory, but effects in the field are mitigated by rapid dissipation and degradation. Due to their highly lipophilic nature, SPs partition extensively into sediments. Recent studies have shown that toxicity in sediment can be predicted on the basis of equilibrium partitioning, and whilst other factors can influence this, organic carbon content is a key determining variable. At present for SPs, there is no clear evidence for adverse population-relevant effects with an underlying endocrine mode of action. SPs have been studied intensively in aquatic field studies, and their effects under field conditions are mitigated from those measured in the laboratory by their rapid dissipation and degradation. Studies with a range of test systems have shown consistent aquatic field endpoints across a variety of geographies and trophic states. SPs are also highly toxic to bees and other nontarget arthropods in the laboratory. These effects are mitigated in the field through repellency and dissipation of residues, and recovery from any adverse effects tends to be rapid.


Aquatic organisms Ecotoxicology Nontarget arthropods Synthetic pyrethroid 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Syngenta Crop Protection AGBaselSwitzerland
  2. 2.Syngenta, Jealott’s Hill International Research CentreBracknell, BerkshireUK
  3. 3.Compliance Services InternationalRochesterUSA
  4. 4.Syngenta Crop Protection LLCGreensboroUSA

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