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Environ Pollut. 2003;122(2):223-7.

A comparison of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon and petroleum hydrocarbon uptake by mussels (Perna viridis) and semi-permeable membrane devices (SPMDs) in Hong Kong coastal waters.

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Department of Biology and Chemistry, Reasearch Centre for Coastal Pollution and Conservation, City University of Hong Kong, 83 Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon, Hong Kong.


The ability of mussels (Perna viridis) and semi-permeable membrane devices (SPMDs) to accumulate polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and petroleum hydrocarbons (PHCs) from five sites in Hong Kong's coastal waters was compared. Mussels consistently had higher levels of contaminants, but their utility was limited at one highly polluted site due to mortality. Mussels and SPMDs ranked sites differently in terms of individual contaminant levels. Although SPMDs overcome many of the disadvantages of using living organisms to measure contaminants in marine waters, they cannot be used as "mimics" due to different PAH and PHC accumulation patterns.

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