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Microplastics in the Aquatic Environment: Occurrence, Persistence, Analysis, and Human Exposure

1
Department of Medicine Surgery and Dentistry “Scuola Medica Salernitana”, University of Salerno, Via S. Allende, 84081 Baronissi, Italy
2
Department of Chemistry and Biology, University of Salerno, Via Giovanni Paolo II, 132-84084 Fisciano, Italy
3
Andrology Unit and Service of Lifestyle Medicine in Uro-Andrology, Local Health Authority (ASL) Salerno, EcoFoodFertility Project, Coordination Unit, Oliveto Citra, Via M. Clemente, 84020 Oliveto Citra, Italy
4
PhD Program in Evolutionary Biology and Ecology, Department of Biology, University of Rome “Tor Vergata“, Via della Ricerca Scientifica 1, 00133 Rome, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this paper as first authors.
Academic Editor: Judith S. Weis
Water 2021, 13(7), 973; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13070973
Received: 21 February 2021 / Revised: 21 March 2021 / Accepted: 30 March 2021 / Published: 1 April 2021
Microplastics (MP) have recently been considered as emerging contaminants in the water environment. In the last number of years, the number of studies on MP has grown quickly due to the increasing consciousness of the potential risks for human health related to MP exposure. The present review article discusses scientific literature regarding MP occurrence and accumulation on the aquatic compartment (river, lake, wastewater, seafood), the analytical methods used to assess their concentration, their fate and transport to humans, and delineates the urgent areas for future research. To better analogize literature data regarding MP occurrence in the aquatic compartment we subdivided papers based on sampling, analytical methods, and concentration units with the aim to help the reader identify the similarities and differences of the considered research papers, thus making the comparison of literature data easier and the individuation of the most relevant articles for the reader’s interests faster. Furthermore, we argued about several ways for MP transport to humans, highlighting some gaps in analytical methods based on the reviewed publications. We suggest improving studies on developing standardized protocols to collect, process, and analyze samples. View Full-Text
Keywords: emerging contaminants; microplastics pollution; aquatic environment; analytical methods emerging contaminants; microplastics pollution; aquatic environment; analytical methods
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ricciardi, M.; Pironti, C.; Motta, O.; Miele, Y.; Proto, A.; Montano, L. Microplastics in the Aquatic Environment: Occurrence, Persistence, Analysis, and Human Exposure. Water 2021, 13, 973. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13070973

AMA Style

Ricciardi M, Pironti C, Motta O, Miele Y, Proto A, Montano L. Microplastics in the Aquatic Environment: Occurrence, Persistence, Analysis, and Human Exposure. Water. 2021; 13(7):973. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13070973

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ricciardi, Maria; Pironti, Concetta; Motta, Oriana; Miele, Ylenia; Proto, Antonio; Montano, Luigi. 2021. "Microplastics in the Aquatic Environment: Occurrence, Persistence, Analysis, and Human Exposure" Water 13, no. 7: 973. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13070973

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