Soares, G.M.; Barros, F.; Lanna, E.; Da Silva, M.V.S.; Cavalcanti, F.F. (2022). Sponges as libraries: Increase in microplastics in Cinachyrella alloclada after 36 years. Marine Pollution Bulletin. 185: 114339.
Sponges as libraries: Increase in microplastics in <i>Cinachyrella alloclada</i> after 36 years
Marine Pollution Bulletin
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Many studies investigated the presence and effects of microplastics in marine species, but data about sponges are still incipient. We quantified these pollutants in a population of the tropical sponge Cinachyrella alloclada, comparing museum specimens sampled in 1981 with specimens sampled in 2017. The mean number of microplastics in specimens collected decades ago was one order of magnitude lower (0.13 ± 0.40/g of sponge tissue) than those sampled more recently (1.37 ± 0.94/g). We observed microplastics in only 10% of the specimens collected in 1981 but in 80 % of those from 2017. According to Raman spectroscopy, fibers in C. alloclada consisted of polypropylene. Our results reinforce the importance of natural history collections to reduce the gap of knowledge on the interaction between marine sponges and microplastics.