Environmental distribution, transport and ecotoxicity of microplastics: A review

Date of publication 3 August 2020

Authors Du, Jia; Zhou, Qingwei; Li, Huanxuan; Xu, Shaodan; Wang, Chunhui; Fu, Li; Tang, Junhong.

Sources Journal of Applied Toxicology :

DOILink https://doi.org/10.1002/jat.4034


Microplastics (MPs) have become a global environmental pollutant because of their unique properties. The extensive MP toxicity reports have focused on the aquatic environment, while the pervasive MP contamination in the soil and air has largely been overlooked. This review summarizes the abundance, sources and transport of MPs in different environments. It analyzes the toxicity of MPs based on various environmentally relevant bacterial, cellular, plant, aquatic animal and mammalian test groups, using both in vitro and in vivo experiments. The combined toxicity effects of MPs and various other environmental pollutants on ecosystems are also discussed. Currently, data on the adverse effects on combined MP toxicity are very limited. Thus, a systematic assessment of the environmental risk in different environments and in various species from MPs is challenging. Thus, this review proposes the possible risks and identifies the knowledge gaps posed by MPs to food safety and human health.

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