Document Detail

Accumulation and transfer of contaminants in killer whales (Orcinus orca) from Norway: indications for contaminant metabolism.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17702329     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Blubber tissue of one subadult and eight male adult killer whales was sampled in Northern Norway in order to assess the degree and type of contaminant exposure and transfer in the herring-killer whale link of the marine food web. A comprehensive selection of contaminants was targeted, with special attention to toxaphenes and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). In addition to assessing exposure and food chain transfer, selective accumulation and metabolism issues also were addressed. Average total polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) and pesticide levels were similar, approximately 25 microg/g lipid, and PBDEs were approximately 0.5 microg/g. This makes killer whales one of the most polluted arctic animals, with levels exceeding those in polar bears. Comparing the contamination of the killer whale's diet with the diet of high-arctic species such as white whales reveals six to more than 20 times higher levels in the killer whale diet. The difference in contaminant pattern between killer whales and their prey and the metabolic index calculated suggested that these cetaceans have a relatively high capacity to metabolize contaminants. Polychlorinated biphenyls, chlordanes, and dichlorodiphenyldichloro-ethylene (DDE) accumulate to some degree in killer whales, although toxaphenes and PBDEs might be partly broken down.
Hans Wolkers; Peter J Corkeron; Sofie M Van Parijs; Tiu Similä; Bert Van Bavel
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Environmental toxicology and chemistry / SETAC     Volume:  26     ISSN:  0730-7268     ISO Abbreviation:  Environ. Toxicol. Chem.     Publication Date:  2007 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-08-17     Completed Date:  2007-10-03     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8308958     Medline TA:  Environ Toxicol Chem     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1582-90     Citation Subset:  IM    
Norwegian Polar Institute, N-9296 Tromsø, Norway.
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MeSH Terms
Environmental Monitoring*
Food Chain*
Pesticides / analysis,  metabolism*
Phenyl Ethers / analysis,  metabolism
Polybrominated Biphenyls / analysis,  metabolism
Polychlorinated Biphenyls / analysis,  metabolism
Risk Assessment
Time Factors
Water Pollutants, Chemical / analysis,  metabolism*
Whale, Killer / metabolism*
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Pesticides; 0/Phenyl Ethers; 0/Polybrominated Biphenyls; 0/Polychlorinated Biphenyls; 0/Water Pollutants, Chemical; 101-84-8/phenyl ether

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