75821 - Ecotoxicology

Academic Year 2021/2022

  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures
  • Campus: Cesena
  • Corso: First cycle degree programme (L) in Aquaculture and Fish Production Hygiene (cod. 8834)

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student acquires knowledge on main contaminats in aquatic environment, on their dynamics and kinetics and on the effects onthe various systems, with particular respect to the immune and the endocrine system. The student is able to recognize the principal poisonings and to apply identification and analytical methods for the confirmation of diagnostic hypothesis. He will also be able to perform an analysis of the toxicological risk deriving from most common environmental pollutants.

Course contents

The Integrated Course (CI) aims to provide students with an overview of farming systems in Aquaculture, in the light of the most advanced technologies and standards, taking into account the impact of these systems on the environment and, conversely, the influence of the environment on food health and safety.

This approach is inserted within the scope of the current legislation, trying to stimulate the student’s ability to identify and critically analyze the legislative evolution of the European Union, national and regional sectors.

The CI will use as tools to achieve these objectives also design thinking activities, which students will have to carry out in the classroom with the support of the teachers.


In detail, the topics of the IC will be:

  • Introduction to ecotoxicology: definitions, principles, general problems.
  • Principles of toxicokinetics.
  • Environmental distribution of contaminants.
  • Biomarkers and bioindicators: definitions and description of the principal biomarkers.
  • Main species used as biondicators.
  • Concept of IBE.
  • Principal classes of contaminants of ecotoxicological interest: pesticides, halogenated compounds, PAH, trace elements, plastics, nanoparticles, drugs, mixtures.
  • Immunotoxicity.
  • Endocrine disruption.
  • Genotoxicity.
  • Risk assessment.
  • Impact of aquaculture on the ecosystems.
  • Case studies. Case studies are analyzed in class with the help of the teacher and will constitute the written exam.

Self-evaluation test are periodically given, on the topics explained at the moment, conditioning the access to the study material.



Classes notes, downloadable from Virtuale.

Blasco J., Chapman P.M., Campana O., Hampel M. Marine Ecotoxicology. Current Knowledge and future issues.Academic Press 2016

Suggested but not mandatory:

Sparling D. W. Ecotoxicology essential. Academic Press, 2016

Amiard-Triquet C. Amiard J.C., Mouneyrac C. Aquatic Ecotoxicology. Academic Press, 2015


The access to the didactic material is progressive (follows the sequence of classes given) and conditioned to self-evaluation test performance.



Teaching methods

Front lessons and seminars.

Last hours of lesson (8 hours) will be used for group working for the preparation of the group report and presentation, which is considered as practical activity.

Although not mandatory, course attendance is strongly recommended as during classes information presented synthetically in the lesson slides are clarified in detail , as well as aspects present in the additional material provided by the teacher and in the chapters of the book indicated as mandatory to study are presented in detailed and explained. The frequency can then certainly facilitate the preparation of the final exam.

Assessment methods

Short group report and presentation on the design thinking activity.

The mark obtained with the group work will be part of the final mark.

Students will aquire up to 4 badges having a value of 0.25 point to be added to the final mark, based on: 1) performing all self-evaluation tests (automatically assigned); 2) participation during lessons; 3) real participation to group work; 4) quality of the group presentation. Last 3 badges are assigned by the Professor.

Written exam based on the analysis of a case study: the student will be asked to analyze the presented situation based on the concepts acquired suring lessons, to be done on EOL platform. Some exam simulation will be done in classroom with the teacher. The grading scheme of the case study analysis will be provided by the professor during the simulations.

Oral exam as eventual integraton of the mark obtained.

Final note derives from the mean of the marks (presentation, writtien exam, oral exam, if any).

For the exam the student should refer to what tought during front lessons, to the text indicated as mandatory and to all integrative material provided by the Professor on virtuale.unibo.it platform.

The final mark of the integrated course will be defined by the weighted average of the marks obtained from each module composing the Course.

Teaching tools

Once again, this material is NOT to be considered as that to be used for exam preparation.

Slides of the lessons.

Additional material given by the teacher (for case studies and practicals).

During classes the Professor will using interactive tool like Polleverywhere and Kahoot.

There will be a large use of immages and video. Students with specific need, which might require different supports or material, are invited to contact directly the Professor in order to prepare specific material.

Office hours

See the website of Annalisa Zaccaroni


Good health and well-being Quality education Oceans

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.