Microplastics

Interest about interactions between microplastics and organisms is on the rise. Accessing organisms’ responses to these chemically “inert” compounds plays an important role in determining their potential toxicity. Microplastics from the environment tend to accumulate and move through living organisms, inducing a variety of biological effects, such as disturbances in energy metabolism, oxidative balance, antioxidative capacity, DNA, immunological, neurological and histological damage.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 111, February 2019
The quantification of micro- and nanoplastics in environmental matrices is an analytical challenge and pushes to the use of unrealistic high exposure concentrations in laboratory studies which can lead to manifestations of ecotoxicological effects and risks estimation that are transient under natural conditions.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 110, January 2019
The current paper critically reviews the state-of-the-science on (1) microplastics (MP) types and particle concentrations in freshwater ecosystems, (2) MP and nanoplastics (NP) uptake and tissue translocation, (3) MP/NP-induced effects in freshwater organisms, and (4) capabilities of MP/NP to modulate the toxicity of environmental chemicals. The reviewed literature as well as new data on MP and NP concentrations in the river Elbe and on particle uptake into human cells indicate an environmental relevance of small particles in the low nano- and micrometer range higher than that of larger MP.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 110, January 2019
Microplastics are widespread contaminants, virtually present in all environmental compartments. However, knowledge on sources, fate and environmental concentration over time and space still is limited due to the laborious and varied analytical procedures currently used. In this work we critically review the methods currently used for sampling and detection of microplastics, identifying flaws in study design and suggesting promising alternatives.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 110, January 2019
This review provides insight into the abundance, origin, distribution and composition of MPs in the sea surface and water column of the Mediterranean Sea. Literature data on MP particles on the sea surface showed an evident heterogeneous distribution and composition, with marked geographical differences between Mediterranean sub-basins. A standardized protocol for water sampling, extraction and detection of plastic debris is strongly recommended.
Plastics entering the environment will persist and continue to degrade and fragment to smaller particles under the action of various environmental factors. These microplastics (MP) and nanoplastics (NP) are likely to pose a higher environmental impact, as well as they are more prone to adsorb organic contaminants and pathogens from the surrounding media, due to their higher surface area to volume ratio. Little known on their characteristics, fragmentation, distribution and impact on freshwater ecosystems.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 109, December 2018
Microplastics are emerging persistent contaminants of increasing concern. Although microplastics have been extensively detected in aquatic environments, their occurrence in soil ecosystems remains largely unexplored. This review focused on recent progress in analytical methods, pollution characteristics and ecological effects of microplastics in soils. In spite of the presence of microplastics in soils, no standardized methods are available for the quantification. Uniform protocols including microplastic extraction and identification are urgently needed to develop.
Microplastics pollution in aquatic ecosystems has aroused increasing global concern, leading to an explosive growth of studies regarding microplastics published in the past few years. To date, there is still a lack of standardized methodologies used for the detection of microplastics within environmental samples, thus hampering comparison of the reported data.

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