Acute and chronic combined effect of polystyrene microplastics and dibutyl phthalate on the marine copepod Tigriopus japonicus.Chemosphere. 2020 Dec; 261:127711.C
Dibutyl phthalate (DBP) is a commonly used additive in plastic products, so it may potentially coexist with microplastics (MPs) in marine environment. The ingestion of MPs might affect the accumulation of DBP in marine organisms. In this study, the marine copepod Tigriopus japonicus was applied to study the combined effect of DBP and polystyrene microplastics (mPS) on the copepod through both acute mortality tests and chronic reproduction tests. The LC50 of DBP was 1.23 mg L-1 (95% CI: 1.11-1.35 mg L-1), while exposure to mPS didn't have significant lethal effect on the copepods. Adsorption to MPs led to decreased bioavailability of DBP, resulting in decreased toxicity of DBP. In contrast to the results of acute toxicity tests, DBP didn't affect the reproduction of the copepods at lower exposure concentrations, while mPS reduced the number of nauplii and extended the time to hatch. Similar as acute toxicity tests, antagonistic interaction was observed for mPS and DBP in chronic reproduction tests, which might be attributed to promoted aggregation of mPS at presence of DBP. Overall, antagonistic toxicity effect between the two pollutants was observed for both acute and chronic tests, but the mechanisms of the interaction between DBP and mPS were different. Results of the present study highlighted the importance of long-term exposure when evaluating the toxic effect of MPs and their combined effect with other chemicals.