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Trophic dilution of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in a marine food web from Bohai Bay, North China
Wan, Y.; Jin, X.; Hu, J.; Jin, F. (2007). Trophic dilution of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in a marine food web from Bohai Bay, North China. Environ. Sci. Technol. 41(9): 3109-3114. https://dx.doi.org/10.1021/es062594x
In: Environmental Science and Technology. American Chemical Society: Easton. ISSN 0013-936X; e-ISSN 1520-5851, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Wan, Y.
  • Jin, X.
  • Hu, J.
  • Jin, F.

Abstract
    Trophic transfer of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in aquatic ecosystems is an important criterion for assessing their ecological risk. This study analyzed 18 PAHs in phytoplankton/seston, zooplankton, five invertebrate species, five fish species, and one seabird species collected from Bohai Bay, and trophic transfer of the PAHs was determined in the food web, of which the length was approximately 4 on the basis of stable nitrogen isotope values. The concentrations of PAHs (2−64.5 ng/g wet weight) in the marine ecosystem were moderate compared with other marine organisms worldwide, and the PAH compositions exhibited species-specific profiles that were related to trophic levels in some organisms. Significant negative relationships were also found between trophic levels and lipid-normalized concentrations for 10 PAH compounds (acenaphthylene, anthracene, fluoranthene, pyrene, chrysene, benz[a]anthracene, benzo[b]fluoranthene + benzo[k]fluoranthene, benzo[e]pyrene, benzo[a]pyrene, and perylene), and their trophic magnification factors (TMFs) ranged from 0.11 for fluoranthene to 0.45 for acenaphthylene. These results confirm that PAHs undergo trophic dilution in the marine food web, which is likely to be the combined results of low assimilation efficiencies and efficient metabolic transformation at higher trophic levels.

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