Ecotoxicity of polyethylene nanoplastics from the North Atlantic oceanic gyre on freshwater and marine organisms (microalgae and filter-feeding bivalves)

Abstract : Each year, 5 to 10 million tons of plastic waste is dumped in the oceans via freshwaters and accumulated in huge oceanic gyres. Under the effect of several abiotic factors, macro plastic wastes (or plastic wastes with macro sizes) are fractionated into microplastics (MP) and finally reach the nanometric size (nanoplastic NP). To reveal potential toxic impacts of these NPs, two microalgae, Scenedemus subspicatus (freshwater green algae), and Thalassiosira weissiflogii (marine diatom) were exposed for up to 48 h at 1, 10, 100, 1000, and 10,000 μg/L to reference polyethylene NPs (PER) or NPs made from polyethylene collected in the North Atlantic gyre (PEN, 7th continent expedition in 2015). Freshwater filter-feeding bivalves, Corbicula fluminea, were exposed to 1000 μg/L of PER and PEN for 48 h to study a possible modification of their filtration or digestion capacity. The results show that PER and PEN do not influence the cell growth of T. weissiflogii, but the PEN exposure causes growth inhibition of S. subspicatus for all exposure concentrations tested. This growth inhibition is enhanced for a higher concentration of PER or PEN (10,000 μg/L) in S. subspicatus. The marine diatom T. weissiflogii appears to be less impacted by plastic pollution than the green algae S. subspicatus for the exposure time. Exposure to NPs does not lead to any alteration of bivalve filtration; however, fecal and pseudo-fecal production increased after PEN exposure, suggesting the implementation of rejection mechanisms for inedible particles.
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Contributor : Isabelle Dubigeon <>
Submitted on : Thursday, May 2, 2019 - 1:52:14 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, May 4, 2019 - 1:14:24 AM

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Magalie Baudrimont, Adeline Arini, Claire Guégan, Zélie Venel, Julien Gigault, et al.. Ecotoxicity of polyethylene nanoplastics from the North Atlantic oceanic gyre on freshwater and marine organisms (microalgae and filter-feeding bivalves). Environmental Science and Pollution Research, Springer Verlag, In press, ⟨10.1007/s11356-019-04668-3⟩. ⟨insu-02117520⟩

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