The mechanistic bioaccumulation model OMEGA (Optimal Modeling for Ecotoxicological Applications) is used to estimate accumulation of zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) in the earthworm Lumbricus rubellus. Our validation to field accumulation data shows that the model accurately predicts internal cadmium concentrations. In addition, our results show that internal metal concentrations in the earthworm are less than linearly (slope < 1) related to the total concentration in soil, while risk assessment procedures often assume the biota-soil accumulation factor (BSAF) to be constant. Although predicted internal concentrations of all metals are generally within a factor 5 compared to field data, incorporation of regulation in the model is necessary to improve predictability of the essential metals such as zinc and copper. ?? 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.