Environmental fate, ecotoxicity biomarkers, and potential health effects of micro- and nano-scale plastic contamination

Prabhat Kumar Rai, Jechan Lee, Richard J.C. Brown, Ki Hyun Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In recent decades, the quantity of plastic waste products has increased tremendously. As plastic wastes are released into the environment, they exert harmful effects on biota and human health. In this work, a comprehensive review is offered to describe the physical and chemical characteristics of microplastics and nanoplastics in relation to their fate, microbial ecology, transport, and ecotoxic behavior. Present discussion is expanded further to cover the biochemical, physiological, and molecular mechanisms controlling the environmental fate, ecotoxicity, and human health hazards of micro- and nanoplastics. The risks of their exposure to microbes, plants, animals, and human health are also reviewed with special emphasis. Finally, a direction for future interdisciplinary research in materials and polymer science is also discussed to help control the pollution caused by micro- and nanoplastics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number123910
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Volume403
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021 Feb 5

Keywords

  • Ecotoxicity
  • Endocrine-disrupting chemicals
  • Engineered nanoparticles
  • Heavy metals
  • Human health
  • Nanoplastics
  • Sorption

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