Occurrence and trophic transfer of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances in an Antarctic ecosystem

By Ke Gao, Xing Miao, Jie Fu, Yu Chen, Huijuan Li, Wenxiao Pan, Jianjie Fu, Qinghua Zhang, Aiqian Zhang, Guibin Jiang
Envir. Poll.
October 31, 2019
DOI: 10.1016/j.envpol.2019.113383

Information on the occurrence and trophodynamics of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) in the Antarctic region is limited. We investigated the occurrence of PFASs in an ecosystem in the Fildes Peninsula at King George Island and Ardley Island, Antarctica. The profiles, spatial distribution, and trophic transfer behavior of PFASs were further studied. ∑PFASs ranged from 0.50 ± 38.0 ng/g dw (dry weight) in algae to 4.97 ± 1.17 ng/g dw in Neogastropoda (Ngas), which was lower than those in the low- and mid-latitude regions and even Arctic regions. Perfluorobutyric acid (PFBA) was predominant with detection frequencies above 50% in all types of samples, and the relative contribution of PFBA ranged from 22% to 57% in the biota samples. The biomagnification factors of PFBA, perfluoroheptanoate (PFHpA), perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS), and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) between Archaeogastropoda (Agas) and Ngas were 0.67 ± 0.54, 0.77 ± 0.38, 1.04 ± 1.56, 3.30 ± 4.07, and 1.61 ± 0.89, respectively. The trophic magnification factors of PFHxS and PFOS were 2.09 and 2.92, respectively, which indicated that they could be biomagnified through the food chain. Considering the increasing production and uncertain toxicological risks of emerging PFASs and the sensitive ecosystems in Antarctic regions, more attention should be paid, especially for the short-chain ones in the Antarctic region.



• PFASs were pervasively detected in all samples from Antarctic.

• Short-chain PFASs were predominant in the Antarctic ecosystem.

• PFOS and PFHxS showed biomagnification potential between Ngas and Agas.

• The TMFs of PFOS and PFHxS were 2.09 and 2.92, respectively, in the Antarctic ecosystem.


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