OECD 315 – Bioaccumulation in Sediment-dwelling Benthic Oligochaetes

OECD 315 is a bioaccumulation test on benthic oligochaetes (aquatic sediment-dwelling worms).

The OECD 315 method measures the residues of a test substance in earthworms after exposure to the test substance mixed with soil.  The method consists of two phases- the uptake phase and elimination phase. Bioaccumulation rate is assessed after both phases are complete. OECD 315 testing is useful for any chemical that may come into contact with soil.

Test Organisms

For OECD 315, commonly used species of benthic oligochaetes (aquatic sediment-dwelling worms) are Tubifex tubifex, Lumbriculus variegates, and Branchiura sowerbyi.

Method Summary

Worms are exposed to the test substance in the treated sediment and topped with water for 28 days (uptake phase). Worm and sediment samples are then analyzed for the test substance. At the end of the uptake phase the worms from remaining test units are transferred to untreated sediment, topped with water, and incubated for 10 days (elimination phase). Worm samples are again analyzed for the test substance.


Three parameters determine the sample’s bioaccumulation: bioaccumulation factor (BAF), uptake rate constant (ks) and elimination rate constant (ke).

For more information on OECD 315, contact the lab at 847-483-9950 or info@situtest.com