Research Output
A comparison of five rapid direct toxicity assessment methods to determine toxicity of pollutants to activated sludge
  Five rapid direct toxicity assessment methods were used in three European partner countries to determine the toxicity of single toxicants, mixed toxicants and real industrial wastes. The final aim was to protect microbial degradation of organic wastes in biological treatment processes and hence enhance the quality of treated effluents to be discharged to the environment. Nitrification inhibition, Respirometry, Adenosine triphosphate luminescence and Enzyme inhibition were tested utilising activated sludge as the testing matrix. The Vibrio fischeri toxicity test was used as a surrogate to compare the various microbial bioassays. The IC50 (toxicant concentration eliciting a 50% inhibitory effect) was determined for a number of pollutants including single toxicants Cd, Cr, Cu, Zn, 3,5-dichlorophenol, toluene and linear alkylbenzenesulphonate (LAS); a standard mixture of metals and LAS; a standard mixture of organics and LAS, and 16 industrial effluents. The V. fischeri bioassay was also chosen in order to assess quality control of toxicant preparation during testing in the different laboratories of the partner countries. Comparisons of sensitivity, cost of implementation, cost per test, relevance, and ease of use were made. The most sensitive bioassays were V. fischeri and Nitrification inhibition, however, this depended in the main on the pollutant and mixtures tested. It is recommended that during assessment of wastewater toxicity a suite of tests be used rather than reliance on one particular test.

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    31 May 2002

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de la Sota, A., Aspichueta, E., Dalzell, D., Dalzell, D., Alte, S., Aspichueta, E., …Christofi, N. (2002). A comparison of five rapid direct toxicity assessment methods to determine toxicity of pollutants to activated sludge. Chemosphere, 47(5), 535-545. doi:10.1016/s0045-6535(01)00331-9



Activated sludge; Toxicity bioassays; Nitrification inhibition; Respirometry; ATP luminescence; Enzyme; Vibrio fischeri

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