Extended evaluation of polymeric and lipophilic sorbents for passive sampling of marine toxins

Marine biotoxins are algal metabolites that can accumulate in fish or shellfish and render these foodstuffs unfit for human consumption. These toxins, released into seawater during algal occurrences, can be monitored through passive sampling. Acetone, methanol and isopropanol were evaluated for their efficiency in extracting toxins from algal biomass. Isopropanol was chosen for further experiments thanks to a slightly higher recovery and no artifact formation. Comparison of Oasis HLB, Strata-X, BondElut C18 and HP-20 sorbent materials in SPE-mode led to the choice of Oasis HLB, HP-20 and Strata-X. These three sorbents were separately exposed as passive samplers for 24 h to seawater spiked with algal extracts containing known amounts of okadaic acid (OA), azaspiracids (AZAs), pinnatoxin-G (PnTX-G), 13-desmethyl spirolide-C (SPX1) and palytoxins (PlTXs). Low density polyethylene (LDPE) and silicone rubber (PDMS) strips were tested in parallel on similar mixtures of spiked natural seawater for 24h. These strips gave significantly lower recoveries than the polymeric sorbents. Irrespective of the toxin group, the adsorption rate of toxins on HP-20 was slower than on Oasis HLB and Strata-X. However, HP-20 and Strata-X gave somewhat higher recoveries after 24h exposure. Irrespective of the sorbent tested, recoveries were generally highest for cyclic imines and OA group toxins, slightly lower for AZAs, and the lowest for palytoxins. Trials in re-circulated closed tanks with mussels exposed to Vulcanodinium rugosum or Prorocentrum lima allowed for further evaluation of passive samplers. In these experiments with different sorbent materials competing for toxins in the same container, Strata-X accumulated toxins faster than Oasis HLB, and HP-20, and to higher levels. The deployment of these three sorbents at Ingril French Mediterranean lagoon to detect PnTX-G in the water column showed accumulation of higher levels on HP-20 and Oasis HLB compared to Strata-X. This study has significantly extended the range of sorbents for passive sampling of marine toxins. In particular, sorbents were included that had previously been evaluated for polyhalogenated contaminants, pharmaceuticals, phytochemicals or veterinary residues. Moreover, this study has for the first time demonstrated the usefulness of the polymeric Oasis HLB and Strata-X sorbents in laboratory and field studies for various microalgal toxins.


Passive sampling, Oasis HLB, Strata-X, LOPE, PDMS, SPATT

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Zendong Zita, Herrenknecht Christine, Abadie Eric, Brissard Charline, Tixier Celine, Mondeguer Florence, Sechet Veronique, Amzil Zouher, Hess Philipp (2014). Extended evaluation of polymeric and lipophilic sorbents for passive sampling of marine toxins. Toxicon. 91. 57-68. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.toxicon.2014.03.010, https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00186/29756/

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