Current challenges in contaminant effects monitoring: Multiple stressors and ecological significance

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Aquatic ecosystems are complex entities that are controlled and regulated by a multitude of physicochemical and biological processes. In addition, aquatic organisms experience a variety of natural and man-induced stressors, both of which vary spatially and temporally. The high variability in environmental factors combined with synergistic and cumulative interactions of these factors in aquatic ecosystems complicate the interpretation and evaluation of the effects of contaminant-related stressors on organisms. With this in mind, some main challenges facing those concerned with assessing the effects of environmental contaminants on organisms are (1) the influence of multiple stressors on stress responses in biological systems, ... continued below

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6 p.

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Adams, S. M. & Ham, K. D. September 1996.

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Description

Aquatic ecosystems are complex entities that are controlled and regulated by a multitude of physicochemical and biological processes. In addition, aquatic organisms experience a variety of natural and man-induced stressors, both of which vary spatially and temporally. The high variability in environmental factors combined with synergistic and cumulative interactions of these factors in aquatic ecosystems complicate the interpretation and evaluation of the effects of contaminant-related stressors on organisms. With this in mind, some main challenges facing those concerned with assessing the effects of environmental contaminants on organisms are (1) the influence of multiple stressors on stress responses in biological systems, (2) determining causal relationships between various levels of biological response to stressors, and (3) identifying early warning indicators or measures of organism impairment that have biological significance before irreversible or serious disability occurs. In all these areas, the health of biological systems (from the individual level to the population and community levels) has as its basis the physiological performance of the organism. Therefore, aspects of contaminant effects monitoring which include physiological measures of health should not only be utilized as measures of deviations from normal function, but should also be applied in the larger context of helping to understand multiple stressor effects, causal relationships between different levels of biological response, and early warning indicators of biologically significant effects.

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6 p.

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OSTI as DE96015029

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  • International congress on the biology of fishes, San Francisco, CA (United States), 14-17 Jul 1996

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  • Other: DE96015029
  • Report No.: CONF-9607154--1
  • Grant Number: AC05-96OR22464
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 392068
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc683302

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  • September 1996

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  • July 25, 2015, 2:20 a.m.

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  • Jan. 25, 2016, 12:09 p.m.

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Adams, S. M. & Ham, K. D. Current challenges in contaminant effects monitoring: Multiple stressors and ecological significance, article, September 1996; Tennessee. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc683302/: accessed September 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.