[MARMAM] New publication: Visualisation of mercury in bottlenose dolphin samples

rebecca at vonhellfeld.de rebecca at vonhellfeld.de
Wed Jan 17 08:46:31 PST 2024


The North Sea is an ecologically rich habitat for marine wildlife which has
also been impacted by industrial developments and anthropogenic emissions of
contaminants such as mercury.
<https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/earth-and-planetary-sciences/marine-ma
mmal> Marine mammals are particularly susceptible to mercury exposure, due
to their trophic position, long lifespan, and dependence on (increasingly
contaminated) aquatic prey species. To mitigate impact, marine mammals can
detoxify
<https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/earth-and-planetary-sciences/methylmer
cury> methylmercury by binding it to selenium-containing biomolecules,
creating insoluble mercury
<https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/earth-and-planetary-sciences/selenide>
selenide granules. Here, liver, kidney, muscle, and brain samples from an
adult male bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) with known elevated
mercury concentrations were analysed through scanning electron microscopy
(SEM). Tiemannite (HgSe) deposits were identified in all organs, ranging
from 400 nm to 5 μm in diameter, with particle size being organ-dependent.
Although reported in other studies, this is the first time that the
three-dimensional nature of tiemannite is captured in marine mammal tissue.

 

Link to article: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2023.123027

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