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New techniques for the detection of microplastics in sediments and field collected organisms
Claessens, M.; Van Cauwenberghe, L.; Vandegehuchte, M.B.; Janssen, C.R. (2013). New techniques for the detection of microplastics in sediments and field collected organisms. Mar. Pollut. Bull. 70(1-2): 227-233.
In: Marine Pollution Bulletin. Macmillan: London. ISSN 0025-326X, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 247947 [ OMA ]

    Mytilus edulis Linnaeus, 1758 [WoRMS]; Marine
Author keywords
    Microplastics; Extraction techniques; Sediments; Tissue; Mytilus edulis

Authors  Top 
  • Claessens, M., more
  • Van Cauwenberghe, L., more
  • Vandegehuchte, M.B., more
  • Janssen, C.R., more

    Microplastics have been reported in marine environments worldwide. Accurate assessment of quantity and type is therefore needed. Here, we propose new techniques for extracting microplastics from sediment and invertebrate tissue. The method developed for sediments involves a volume reduction of the sample by elutriation, followed by density separation using a high density NaI solution. Comparison of this methods’ efficiency to that of a widely used technique indicated that the new method has a considerably higher extraction efficiency. For fibres and granules an increase of 23% and 39% was noted, extraction efficiency of PVC increased by 100%. The second method aimed at extracting microplastics from animal tissues based on chemical digestion. Extraction of microspheres yielded high efficiencies (94–98%). For fibres, efficiencies were highly variable (0–98%), depending on polymer type. The use of these two techniques will result in a more complete assessment of marine microplastic concentrations.

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