The effect of temperature on toxicokinetics and the chronic toxicity of insecticides towards Gammarus pulex

Anna Huang*, Annika Mangold-Döring, Huitong Guan, Marie Claire Boerwinkel, Dick Belgers, Andreas Focks, Paul J. van den Brink

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


A comprehensive understanding of chemical toxicity and temperature interaction is essential to improve ecological risk assessment under climate change. However, there is only limited knowledge about the effect of temperature on the toxicity of chemicals. To fill this knowledge gap and to improve our mechanistic understanding of the influence of temperature, the current study explored toxicokinetics and the chronic toxicity effects of two insecticides, imidacloprid (IMI) and flupyradifurone (FPF), on Gammarus pulex at different temperatures (7–24 °C). In the toxicokinetics tests, organisms were exposed to IMI or FPF for 2 days and then transferred to clean water for 3 days of elimination at 7, 18, or 24 °C. In the chronic tests, organisms were exposed to the individual insecticides for 28 days at 7, 11, or 15 °C. Our research found that temperature impacted the toxicokinetics and the chronic toxicity of both IMI and FPF, while the extent of such impact differed for each insecticide. For IMI, the uptake rate and biotransformation rate increased with temperature, and mortality and food consumption inhibition was enhanced by temperature. While for FPF, the elimination rate increased with temperature at a higher rate than the increasing uptake rate, resulting in a smaller pronounced effect of temperature on mortality compared to IMI. In addition, the adverse effects of the insecticides on sublethal endpoints (food consumption and dry weight) were exacerbated by elevated temperatures. Our results highlight the importance of including temperature in the ecological risk assessment of insecticides in light of global climate change.

Original languageEnglish
Article number158886
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2023


  • Aquatic species
  • Insecticides
  • Temperature
  • Toxicity
  • Toxicokinetic


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