Experimental evidence that polystyrene nanoplastics cross the intestinal barrier of European seabass

Type Article
Date 2022-08
Language English
Author(s) Vagner Marie6, Boudry G.2, Courcot L.3, Vincent D.4, Dehaut A.5, Duflos G.5, Huvet ArnaudORCID1, Tallec K1, Zambonino-Infante Jose-LuisORCID1
Affiliation(s) 1 : Univ Brest, CNRS, IRD, Ifremer, LEMAR, F-29280 Plouzané, France
2 : Institut Numecan, INRAE, INSERM, Univ Rennes, F-35590 Saint-Gilles, France
3 : Laboratoire d’Océanologie et de Géosciences, Université Littoral Côte d’Opale, University of Lille, CNRS, UMR 8187, LOG, 32 avenue Foch, F-62930 Wimereux, France
4 : Office Français de la Biodiversité (OFB), Direction Surveillance Évaluation et Données (DSUED), Service Écosystèmes Connaissances et Usages des milieux marins (ECUMM), 16 quai de la Douane, F-29200 Brest, France
5 : ANSES Laboratoire de Sécurité des Aliments, 6 Boulevard du Bassin Napoléon, F-62200 Boulogne-sur-Mer, France
6 : Univ Brest, CNRS, IRD, Ifremer, LEMAR, F-29280 Plouzané, France
Source Environment International (0160-4120) (Elsevier BV), 2022-08 , Vol. 166 , P. 107340 (9p.)
DOI 10.1016/j.envint.2022.107340
WOS© Times Cited 2
Keyword(s) Polystyrene nanoplastic beads, Translocation, Intestinal epithelium, Dicentrarchus labrax, Ussing chambers

Plastic pollution in marine ecosystems constitutes an important threat to marine life. For vertebrates, macro/microplastics can obstruct and/or transit into the airways and digestive tract whereas nanoplastics (NPs; < 1000 nm) have been observed in non-digestive tissues such as the liver and brain. Whether NPs cross the intestinal epithelium to gain access to the blood and internal organs remains controversial, however. Here, we show directly NP translocation across the intestinal barrier of a fish, the European seabass, Dicentrarchus labrax, ex vivo. The luminal side of median and distal segments of intestine were exposed to fluorescent polystyrene NPs (PS-NPs) of 50 nm diameter. PS-NPs that translocated to the serosal side were then detected quantitatively by fluorimetry, and qualitatively by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and pyrolysis coupled to gas chromatography and high-resolution mass spectrometry (Py-GC-HRMS). Fluorescence intensity on the serosal side increased 15–90 min after PS-NP addition into the luminal side, suggesting that PS-NPs crossed the intestinal barrier; this was confirmed by both SEM and Py-GC-HRMS. This study thus evidenced conclusively that NPs beads translocate across the intestinal epithelium in this marine vertebrate.

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