Bivalves appear as relevant sentinel species in aquatic ecotoxicology and water quality assessment. This is particularly true in marine ecosystems. In fact, several biomonitoring frameworks in the world used mollusks since several decades on the base of contaminant accumulation (Mussel Watch, ROCCH) and/or biological responses called biomarker (OSPAR) measurements. In freshwater systems, zebra and quagga mussels could represent alternative sentinels, which could be seen as the counterparts of mussel marine species. This chapter presents original studies and projects underlying the interest of these freshwater mussels for water quality monitoring based on contaminant accumulation and biomarker development measurements. These sentinel species could be used as a tool for chemical/biological monitoring of biota under the European water framework directive and for the development of effect-based monitoring tools.
Part of the book: Organismal and Molecular Malacology