Assessing the impact of multiple stressors on aquatic biota: the receptor's side matters.

Segner, Helmut; Schmitt-Jansen, M; Sabater, S (2014). Assessing the impact of multiple stressors on aquatic biota: the receptor's side matters. Environmental science & technology, 48(14), pp. 7690-7696. ACS Publications 10.1021/es405082t

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Aquatic ecosystems are confronted with multiple stress factors. Current approaches to assess the risk of anthropogenic stressors to aquatic ecosystems are developed for single stressors and determine stressor effects primarily as a function of stressor properties. The cumulative impact of several stressors, however, may differ markedly from the impact of the single stressors and can result in nonlinear effects and ecological surprises. To meet the challenge of diagnosing and predicting multiple stressor impacts, assessment strategies should focus on properties of the biological receptors rather than on stressor properties. This change of paradigm is required because (i) multiple stressors affect multiple biological targets at multiple organizational levels, (ii) biological receptors differ in their sensitivities, vulnerabilities, and response dynamics to the individual stressors, and (iii) biological receptors function as networks, so that actions of stressors at disparate sites within the network can lead via indirect or cascading effects, to unexpected outcomes.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP)
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP) > Center for Fish and Wildlife Health (FIWI)

UniBE Contributor:

Segner, Helmut

Subjects:

600 Technology > 630 Agriculture

ISSN:

0013-936X

Publisher:

ACS Publications

Language:

English

Submitter:

Lucia Gugger-Raaflaub

Date Deposited:

23 Apr 2015 11:41

Last Modified:

12 Oct 2015 15:29

Publisher DOI:

10.1021/es405082t

PubMed ID:

24905720

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.65479

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/65479

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