Mechanistic modelling for ecotoxicology and ecology

Back to

PestPuls: Effects of pulsed exposure to combinations of pesticides used as anti-parasitic
medicines in aquaculture

Research Council of Norway
Project leader
IRIS Stavanger, Norway (Dr. Renée Bechmann)


The increasing use of chemicals to treat farmed salmon against the crustacean ectoparasitic salmon louse (Lepeophtheirus salmonis) in Norwegian salmon farms is a concern for the authorities, the industry (aquaculture and coastal fisheries) and the public. The proposed project will provide valuable new information about how a keystone species in the marine ecosystem, the commercially and culinary important northern shrimp (Pandalus borealis) responds to repeated pulse exposures to combinations of pesticides used for delousing salmon. Marine organisms living in areas with salmon farms could be exposed repeatedly to mixtures of pesticides. Since data on repeated pulse or fluctuating exposures are very rare in the literature, we will investigate the effects of two combination treatments recommended for efficient delousing in Norwegian salmon farms. In parallel to the shrimp experiments, we will evaluate if blue mussels (Mytilus edulis) are sensitive enough to be used for monitoring discharges of the tested chemicals by using valve gape behaviour and accumulation of pesticides.

My role

The toxicokinetic-toxicodynamic model (TKTD) GUTS represents the state-of-the art in dynamic modelling for the endpoint survival. The GUTS model will be used to explain the dynamic mortality pattern in Northern shrimp exposed to the chemical mixtures. The resulting model will then be used to extrapolate to mortality patterns in scenarios not tested in the laboratory. Data and results from previous projects will be used as an input in the model development and parametrization. The GUTS model will be calibrated based on the available toxicity data for the single chemicals, and used to predict the behavior of the mixture. The deviations from the predictions will provide information on the existence and importance of interactions of the mixture components. As the animals are growing in the toxicity tests, special care will be taken to include the effects on growth on toxicokinetics in the GUTS model.

The northern shrimp, Pandalus borealis.

Output: Publications (as first or co-author)

  • Bechmann RK, M Arnberg, A Gomiero, S Westerlund, E Lyng, M Berry, T Agustsson, T Jager, L Burridge (2019). Gill damage and delayed mortality of Northern shrimp (Pandalus borealis) after short time exposure to anti-parasitic veterinary medicine containing hydrogen peroxide. Ecotox Environ Saf 180:473-482.
  • ...

Output: Presentations (as presenter and as contributor)

  • Assessing effects of salmon lice treatment (H2O2) on shrimp populations in a multi-stressor environment. Moe J, T Jager, D Hjermann, E Ravagnan, R Bechmann. Platform presentation at SETAC Toronto 2019.
  • Hydrogen peroxide effects on Northern shrimp: dynamic modelling of mortality. Jager T, J Moe, DØ Hjermann, E Ravagnan, RK Bechmann. Poster presentation at the 30th SETAC Europe conference in virtual space, 3-7 May 2020. Abstract. Handout.
  • Assessing effects of salmon lice treatment (H2O2) on shrimp populations: combined exposure, effect and population modelling. J Moe, D Hjermann, E Ravagnan, OA Nøst, G Refseth, R Bechmann. Platform presentation by Jannicke Moe at the 30th SETAC Europe conference in virtual space, 3-7 May 2020.
  • Impacts of salmon lice treatment (H2O2) on coastal shrimp populations: a probabilistic risk assessment approach. Moe J, D Hjermann, OA Nøst, G Refseth, T Jager, M Norling and R Bechmann. Poster presentation at the 31st SETAC Europe conference in virtual space, 3-6 May 2021.

Back to