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Trace metals in seagrass, algae and molluscs from an uncontaminated area in the Mediterranean

Trace metals in seagrass, algae and molluscs from an uncontaminated area in the Mediterranean

Environmental Pollution 111(1): 117-126

The concentrations of Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb and Zn were measured in specimens of four marine organisms - the seagrass Posidonia oceanica (L.) Delile, the brown algae Padina pavonica (L.) Thivy, and the two gastropod molluscs Monodonta turbinata Born and Patella caerulea L.-selected as possible cosmopolitan biomonitors of trace metals in the Mediterranean area. The organisms were collected at five coastal sites in Favignana Island (Sicily, Italy), an area virtually uninfluenced by anthropogenic activities. In order to gain a more complete picture of both the environmental conditions of the experimental area and the bioaccumulation patterns of the selected organisms, soluble and total metal concentrations were determined in coastal water samples collected at the same stations. The picture of bioavailable metal loads in the different sites of the selected area provided by the four species was rather univocal. An overall trend of increased metal concentrations at the station in which the local harbour is located was clear. On the other hand, the metal concentrations recorded at the 'clean' stations generally fall in the range of the lowest values available in the literature and may be considered as useful background levels to which to refer for intraspecific comparison within the Mediterranean area. Implications in biomonitoring of the observed accumulation patterns, especially in the different tissues of Posidonia oceanica, are discussed.

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Accession: 018188322

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PMID: 11202705

DOI: 10.1016/s0269-7491(99)00327-9

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