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Open AccessArticle

Mercury Content in Central and Southern Adriatic Sea Sediments in Relation to Seafloor Geochemistry and Sedimentology

Department of Pure and Applied Sciences (DiSPeA), University of Urbino Carlo Bo, Campus Scientifico E. Mattei, 61029 Urbino, Italy
Department of Life and Environmental Sciences, Università Politecnica delle Marche, Via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona, Italy
CoNISMa, Consorzio Nazionale Interuniversitario per le Scienze del Mare, Piazzale Flaminio, 9, 00196 Roma, Italy
Institute of Biological Resources and Marine Biotechnology (IRBIM), National Research Council (CNR), Largo Fiera della Pesca, 2, 60125 Ancona, Italy
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Derek J. McPhee
Molecules 2019, 24(24), 4467;
Received: 16 October 2019 / Revised: 21 November 2019 / Accepted: 29 November 2019 / Published: 5 December 2019
Mercury contents were determined in surface sediments from the Central and Southern Adriatic Sea to gain insight into the processes, factors, and variables affecting its distribution. Mercury concentration was measured by thermal decomposition amalgamation atomic absorption spectrometry in samples collected by box-corer from Ancona to Santa Maria di Leuca during the CNR-PERTRE cruise (16/9-4/10/2016). Sediments were also evaluated for chemical-physical parameters (pH, Eh), biogeochemical composition (total carbon, inorganic carbon, total organic carbon, organic matter) and grain size. The average mercury concentration in the Adriatic Sea sediment was 0.053 mg/Kg (d.w.), range 0.011–0.12 mg/Kg (d.w.). Mercury content was mainly affected by grain size and organic matter (OM) distribution, whereas anthropic factors exerted a limited influence. Concentrations followed the distribution of sediment types (clay > silt > sand) due to Adriatic Sea hydrodynamics and were well below the regulatory limits in all samples. View Full-Text
Keywords: mercury; sediments; grain size; organic matter; Adriatic sea mercury; sediments; grain size; organic matter; Adriatic sea
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Droghini, E.; Annibaldi, A.; Prezioso, E.; Tramontana, M.; Frapiccini, E.; De Marco, R.; Illuminati, S.; Truzzi, C.; Spagnoli, F. Mercury Content in Central and Southern Adriatic Sea Sediments in Relation to Seafloor Geochemistry and Sedimentology. Molecules 2019, 24, 4467.

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