A critique of the use of distribution-based extrapolation models in ecotoxicology

T. L. Forbes, V. E. Forbes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

113 Scopus citations


Examines the features and assumptions of recently developed distribution-based extrapolation models that are currently in use. All these presume an underlying interspecific distribution of sensitivities to a toxicant, but rational use of these models as ecotoxicological tools for environmental regulation requires additional basic knowledge in two areas: 1) concerns the relationship between structure and function in ecosystems, and 2) involves the nature of the statistical distribution of toxicity end-points in natural assemblages of species. Statistical extrapolation does not presently offer an improvement over much simpler arbitrary assessment factors. The added complexity inherent in their use is not outweighed by the benefits obtained. -from Authors

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)249-254
Number of pages6
JournalFunctional Ecology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1993


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