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Sci Total Environ. 2013 Jan 15;443:775-90. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2012.11.046. Epub 2012 Dec 8.

What are the toxicological effects of mercury in Arctic biota?

Author information

  • 1Aarhus University, Department for Bioscience, Arctic Research Centre, P.O. Box 358, Roskilde, DK-4000, Denmark. rdi@dmu.dk

Abstract

This review critically evaluates the available mercury (Hg) data in Arctic marine biota and the Inuit population against toxicity threshold values. In particular marine top predators exhibit concentrations of mercury in their tissues and organs that are believed to exceed thresholds for biological effects. Species whose concentrations exceed threshold values include the polar bears (Ursus maritimus), beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas), pilot whale (Globicephala melas), hooded seal (Cystophora cristata), a few seabird species, and landlocked Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus). Toothed whales appear to be one of the most vulnerable groups, with high concentrations of mercury recorded in brain tissue with associated signs of neurochemical effects. Evidence of increasing concentrations in mercury in some biota in Arctic Canada and Greenland is therefore a concern with respect to ecosystem health.

PMID:
23231888
DOI:
10.1016/j.scitotenv.2012.11.046
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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