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Chemosphere. 2017 Apr;172:268-277. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2016.12.152. Epub 2017 Jan 2.

Spatiotemporal distributions of butyltin compounds in various intertidal organisms along the Samcheok and Tongyeong coasts of Korea.

Author information

1
School of Earth and Environmental Sciences & Research Institute of Oceanography, Seoul National University, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
2
Department of Ocean Environmental Sciences, Chungnam National University, Daejeon, Republic of Korea.
3
Department of Marine Biotechnology, Anyang University, Ganghwagun, Incheon, Republic of Korea.
4
School of Earth and Environmental Sciences & Research Institute of Oceanography, Seoul National University, Seoul, Republic of Korea. Electronic address: jskocean@snu.ac.kr.

Abstract

Thirteen years ago, the Korean Government introduced a regulation prohibiting the use of tributyltin (TBT), which was a component of antifouling paints. A subsequent decline in the concentration of butyltins (BTs) was recorded in seawater and the sediment, however, the current concentration of BTs in biota has not been well documented. The spatiotemporal distribution and concentration of BTs was recorded in biota from 2013 to 2015 along the coasts of Samcheok and Tongyeong using GS/MSD analysis. Crustaceans contained the greatest concentrations of BTs, followed by gastropods, fishes, and bivalves. We found that the concentration of BTs was greater at Tongyeong compared to Samcheok, because of the geographical characteristics of the area. We also confirmed that the regulation has been effective by showing that the TBT concentration decreased over the 3-year study period. The TBT levels of gastropods and bivalves fell within the limits of the guidelines and/or the effective concentration of the toxicological endpoint reported previously. The concentration of BTs also varied among species, being dependent on the weight of the soft tissue. Furthermore, the greater quantities of BTs degradation products compared to TBT confirmed the absence of recent inputs of pollutants during the study periods. However, compared with other Asian countries, biota BTs were greater in Korea, with noticeably greater concentrations along the south coast. Thus, further investigation of the distribution of BTs along the Korean coasts is required in the future. In conclusion, our results provide useful information about the recent trends of BTs in Korea.

KEYWORDS:

Biota; Butyltin degradation index; Butyltins; Korean coasts; Tributyltin

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