How Does Experimental Design Modify the Result of Daphnia magna Heartbeat Rate Test? ─ Analyses of Factors Affecting the Sensitivity of the Test System
Development of an unconventional test method involves usually the comparison of biological responses under a variety of test conditions. The quality of these biological methods relies on an appropriate experimental design. The Daphnia magna heartbeat rate as a physiological endpoint for assessing aquatic pollution has been of minor interest so far; nonetheless, this could be an early and sensitive indicator of the harmful effect of micropollutants. Our aim was to set up the optimal experimental design of the heartbeat rate test. The studied factors were the composition of the test medium, the age of the test organism, and the exposure time, at triclosan concentrations between 0.2–2000 μg/L. According to the evaluation of test results the optimal test condition for the heartbeat rate test assumes tap water as test medium, 10-day-old test organisms and 48 h exposure time.