Effects of Particulate Carbonaceous Matter on the Bioavailability of Benzo[ a ]pyrene and 2,2‘,5,5‘-Tetrachlorobiphenyl to the Clam, Macoma balthica

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering , Stanford University, Palo Alto, California, United States
Environmental Science and Technology (Impact Factor: 5.33). 10/2004; 38(17):4549-56. DOI: 10.1021/es049893b
Source: PubMed


We investigated the bioavailability via diet of spiked benzo[a]pyrene (BaP) and 2,2',5,5'-tetrachlorobiphenyl (PCB-52) from different carbonaceous (non-carbonate, carbon containing) particle types to clams (Macoma balthica) collected from San Francisco Bay. Our results reveal significant differences in absorption efficiency between compounds and among carbonaceous particle types. Absorption efficiency for PCB-52 was always greater than that for BaP bound to a given particle type. Among particles, absorption efficiency was highest from wood and diatoms and lowest from activated carbon. Large differences in absorption efficiency could not be simply explained by comparatively small differences in the particles' total organic carbon content. BaP and PCB-52 bound to activated carbon exhibited less than 2% absorption efficiency and were up to 60 times less available to clams than the same contaminants associated with other types of carbonaceous matter. These results suggest that variations in the amount and type of sediment particulate carbonaceous matter, whether naturally occurring or added as an amendment, will have a strong influence on the bioavailability of hydrophobic organic contaminants. This has important implications for environmental risk assessment, sediment management, and development of novel remediation techniques.

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