Toxicity of the antimicrobial oxytetracycline to soil organisms in a multi-species-soil system (MS.3) and influence of manure co-addition

J Hazard Mater. 2005 Jul 15;122(3):233-41. doi: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2005.03.003. Epub 2005 Apr 7.


The effects of oxytetracycline (OTC) on soil organisms have been studied using a multi-species-soil system (MS.3). Oxytetracycline concentrations of 0.01 mg/kg, 1 mg/kg and 100 mg/kg soil were added to the 20 cm top arable soil layer, with and without horse/cow manure (0.15 g organic N/kg soil) co-addition. No mortality was observed for Eisenia foetida S. but significant effects on soil microbial enzymatic activities (phosphatase, dehydrogenase) were observed. The effects on soil microorganism were observed earlier but then recovered in systems with manure co-addition. More important, OTC related plant inhibition was observed in the manured but not in the non-manured systems. Oxytetracycline reached 0.19 and 1.85 mg/l in the leachate of the soil spiked with 1 and 100 mg OTC/kg, respectively and 0.05 and 1.14 mg/l for the same OTC concentrations in the manured systems. The results confirm that manure can modify both the fate and the effects of OTC and that the multi-species-soil systems can reproduce the conditions for a realistic effect estimation of veterinary medicines.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / chemistry
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / toxicity*
  • Biomass
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Manure / microbiology*
  • Oligochaeta / drug effects
  • Oxidoreductases / metabolism
  • Oxytetracycline / chemistry
  • Oxytetracycline / toxicity*
  • Phosphoric Monoester Hydrolases / metabolism
  • Plants / drug effects
  • Reference Values
  • Soil Microbiology*


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Manure
  • Oxidoreductases
  • Phosphoric Monoester Hydrolases
  • Oxytetracycline