Methoxylated polybrominated diphenyl ethers (MeO-PBDEs) are major contributors to the persistent organobromine load in sub-Arctic and Arctic marine mammals, 1986–2009

Anna Rotander, Bert van Bavel, Frank Rigét, Guðjón Atli Auðunsson, Anuschka Polder, Geir Wing Gabrielsen, Gísli A. Víkingsson, Bjarni Mikkelsen, Maria Dam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A selection of MeO-BDE and BDE congeners were analyzed in pooled blubber samples of pilot whale (Globicephala melas), ringed seal (Phoca hispida), minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata), fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus), harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena), hooded seal (Cystophora cristata), and Atlantic white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus acutus), covering a time period of more than 20 years (1986–2009). The analytes were extracted and cleaned-up using open column extraction and multi-layer silica gel column chromatography. The analysis was performed using both low resolution and high resolution GC-MS. MeO-PBDE concentrations relative to total PBDE concentrations varied greatly between sampling periods and species. The highest MeO-PBDE levels were found in the toothed whale species pilot whale and white-sided dolphin, often exceeding the concentration of the most abundant PBDE, BDE-47. The lowest MeO-PBDE levels were found in fin whales and ringed seals. The main MeO-BDE congeners were 6-MeO-BDE47 and 2′-MeO-BDE68. A weak correlation only between BDE47 and its methoxylated analog 6-MeO-BDE47 was found and is indicative of a natural source for MeO-PBDEs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)482-489
Number of pages8
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Volume416
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2012

Keywords

  • Arctic
  • Marine mammals
  • North Atlantic Ocean
  • Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs)
  • Methoxylated polybrominated diphenyl ethers (MeO-PBDEs)
  • Sub-Arctic

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