University Of Tasmania

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Copper ecotoxicology of marine algae: a methodological appraisal

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-18, 21:52 authored by Leal, PP, Catriona HurdCatriona Hurd, Sander, SG, Armstrong, E, Roleda, MY
The production of accurate and reliable data on copper ecotoxicology of marine algae depends on the use of trace metal clean techniques during experimentation. We reviewed the methodologies used in the literature on copper ecotoxicology of marine macro- and microalgae, specifically the use of trace metal clean procedures such as the labware used (glassware vs. plasticware), methods of cleaning the labware (acid soaking and ultrapure water rinsing), stock solution preparation (copper source and acidification), and measurement and reporting of dissolved copper concentrations. In terms of taxonomic classification, the most studied algal groups were the Phyla Ochrophyta, Bacillariophyta, Rhodophyta, and Chlorophyta. In terms of methodology, ∼50% of the articles did not specify the labware, ∼25% used glassware, and ∼25% plasticware; ∼30% of the studies specified cleaning protocols for labware to remove trace metal impurities; the copper form used to prepare the stock solutions was specified in ∼80% of studies but acidification to stabilise the dissolved copper was performed in only ∼20%; and the dissolved copper concentration was measured in only ∼40% of studies. We discuss the importance of following trace metal clean techniques for the comparison and interpretation of data obtained on copper ecotoxicology in algae.


Publication title

Chemistry and Ecology










Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies


Taylor & Francis

Place of publication

United Kingdom

Rights statement

Copyright 2016 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Assessment and management of terrestrial ecosystems