Published on April 18, 2018
The effect of multiple stressors on marine ecosystems remains poorly understood and most of the knowledge available is related to phytoplankton. To partly address this knowledge gap, we tested if combining multimodel inference with generalized additive modelling could quantify the relative contribution of environmental variables on the population dynamics of a zooplankton species in the Belgian part of the North Sea.

Published on April 17, 2018

In collaboration with researchers from the Norwegian Institute for Water Research, we developed a framework to study the effects of combined environmental stress at the molecular level. This framework can provide a new way to tackle the challenges of combined stressors in risk assessment. Addressing these challenges is crucial as ecosystems are often exposed to a multitude of stressors, both chemical and natural.

Published on April 17, 2018

In collaboration with researchers from the French nuclear institute, we studied the effects of gamma radiation on the waterflea. We have observed that effect of gamma radiation o the methylation of DNA in the first generation of animals are transmitted to the subsequent unexposed generations of offspring (children and grandchildren). Studying the effects of radiation across multiple generations will give us a better insight into the effects of nuclear power plants and other sources of radiation on our ecosystems.

Published on March 15, 2018
Ecological risk assessment (ERA) is commonly based on single generation ecotoxicological tests that are usually performed at one standard temperature. We investigate the effects of nickel (Ni) on Daphnia magna reproduction at 15, 20 and 25°C along four generations.

Published on March 14, 2018

We are happy to announce that our colleague, Dimitri van de Perre, on March 14, 2018, defended his dissertation to earn his doctoral degree! During his PhD, his research focused on estimating and predicting risks of multiple stressors on aquatic communities. Congratulations, Dimitri! 

Published on March 5, 2018
The population structure of the non-indigenous calanoid copepod Pseudodiaptomus marinus (Sato, 1913) in the Belgian part of the North Sea (BPNS) is reported for the first time. Detailed P. marinus abundance data including sex and age class of the individuals was gathered on a monthly basis from February 2015 to February 2016 at six sites within the BPNS and Belgian harbors.

Published on February 27, 2018
Under natural conditions, organisms can experience a variety of abiotic (e.g. temperature, pH) and biotic (e.g. species interactions) conditions, which can interact with toxicant effects. By ignoring species interactions conventional ecotoxicological studies (i.e. single species tests) oversimplify the actual field situation. Here, we investigated whether temperature and interspecific competition affected the effects of zinc on a Daphnia longispina population.

Published on February 16, 2018
Urban regions of the world are expanding rapidly, placing additional stress on water resources. These water bodies receive chemical emissions arising from either single or multiple point sources, diffuse sources which can be continuous, intermittent, or seasonal. Thus, aquatic organisms in these water bodies are exposed to temporally and compositionally variable mixtures. We have delineated source-specific signatures of these mixtures for diffuse urban runoff and urban point source exposure scenarios to support risk assessment and management of these mixtures.

Published on February 16, 2018

“Karel De Schamphelaere will become the next president of SETACEurope (link) in May 2018. SETACEurope is the premier professional society in the domain of ecotoxicology and ecological risk assessment. In this article (link) he presents the strategic goals of SETACEurope, the development of which he directed with the support and creativity of the whole team of SETAC Europe board of directors.”

Published on February 15, 2018

Copepods are an important component of aquatic ecosystems and constitute a large portion of the total animal biomass on earth. Over the last few decades, the copepod Nitocra spinipes has become a popular test species in environmental toxicity studies. While the amount of short- and long-term toxicity data for this species keeps increasing, little is known about the mechanisms that lead to observable effects on e.g. its growth, development, and reproduction. The Dynamic Energy Budget (DEB) theory can help increase our understanding of those processes.