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Size-Dependent Effects of Micro Polystyrene Particles in the Marine Copepod Tigriopus japonicus

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posted on 2013-10-01, 00:00 authored by Kyun-Woo Lee, Won Joon Shim, Oh Youn Kwon, Jung-Hoon Kang
We investigated the effects of three sizes of polystyrene (PS) microbeads (0.05, 0.5, and 6-μm diameter) on the survival, development, and fecundity of the copepod Tigriopus japonicus using acute and chronic toxicity tests. T. japonicus ingested and egested all three sizes of PS beads used and exhibited no selective feeding when phytoplankton were added. The copepods (nauplius and adult females) survived all sizes of PS beads and the various concentrations tested in the acute toxicity test for 96 h. In the two-generation chronic toxicity test, 0.05-μm PS beads at a concentration greater than 12.5 μg/mL caused the mortality of nauplii and copepodites in the F0 generation and even triggered mortality at a concentration of 1.25 μg/mL in the next generation. In the 0.5-μm PS bead treatment, despite there being no significant effect on the F0 generation, the highest concentration (25 μg/mL) induced a significant decrease in survival compared with the control population in the F1 generation. The 6-μm PS beads did not affect the survival of T. japonicus over two generations. The 0.5- and 6-μm PS beads caused a significant decrease in fecundity at all concentrations. These results suggest that microplastics such as micro- or nanosized PS beads may have negative impacts on marine copepods.

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