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Alternative and legacy flame retardants in marine mammals from three northern ocean regions
Shaw Institute.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6679-6756
Shaw Institute.
Shaw Institute.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2973-0352
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2023 (English)In: Environmental Pollution, ISSN 0269-7491, E-ISSN 1873-6424, Vol. 335, p. 122255-122255, article id 122255Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Flame retardants are globally distributed contaminants that have been linked to negative health effects in humans and wildlife. As top predators, marine mammals bioaccumulate flame retardants and other contaminants in their tissues which is one of many human-imposed factors threatening population health. While some flame retardants, such as the polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE), have been banned because of known toxicity and environmental persistence, limited data exist on the presence and distribution of current-use alternative flame retardants in marine mammals from many industrialized and remote regions of the world. Therefore, this study measured 44 legacy and alternative flame retardants in nine marine mammal species from three ocean regions: the Northwest Atlantic, the Arctic, and the Baltic allowing for regional, species, age, body condition, temporal, and tissue comparisons to help understand global patterns. PBDE concentrations were 100–1000 times higher than the alternative brominated flame retardants (altBFRs) and Dechloranes. 2,2′,4,5,5′-pentabromobiphenyl (BB-101) and hexabromobenzene (HBBZ) were the predominant altBFRs, while Dechlorane-602 was the predominant Dechlorane. This manuscript also reports only the second detection of hexachlorocyclopentadienyl-dibromocyclooctane (HCDBCO) in marine mammals. The NW Atlantic had the highest PBDE concentrations followed by the Baltic and Arctic which reflects greater historical use of PBDEs in North America compared to Europe and greater industrialization of North America and Baltic countries compared to the Arctic. Regional patterns for other compounds were more complicated, and there were significant interactions among species, regions, body condition and age class. Lipid-normalized PBDE concentrations in harbor seal liver and blubber were similar, but HBBZ and many Dechloranes had higher concentrations in liver, indicating factors other than lipid dynamics affect the distribution of these compounds. The health implications of contamination by this mixture of compounds are of concern and require further research.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2023. Vol. 335, p. 122255-122255, article id 122255
Keywords [en]
Novel flame retardants, Pinnipeds, Cetaceans, Tissue distribution, Regional comparison, Inter-species comparison
National Category
Organic Chemistry Other Natural Sciences
Research subject
Man and the environment
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:nrm:diva-5282DOI: 10.1016/j.envpol.2023.122255OAI: oai:DiVA.org:nrm-5282DiVA, id: diva2:1785549
Available from: 2023-08-03 Created: 2023-08-03 Last updated: 2024-01-19

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Berger, Michelle L.Rolsky, Charles B.Simon, MaleneRoos, Anna Maria
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