Name: Mateus Reis Milagres
Type: MSc dissertation
Publication date: 29/08/2022

Namesort descending Role
Mercia Barcellos da Costa Advisor *

Examining board:

Namesort descending Role
Jones Bernardes Graceli External Alternate *
Marcos Antonio dos Santos Fernandez External Examiner *
Mercia Barcellos da Costa Advisor *
Ryan Carlos de Andrades Internal Alternate *
Teresa Cristina Rodrigues dos Santos Franco External Examiner *

Summary: The production of plastics on a global scale grows
dramatically, surpassing 367 million tons in 2020, most of which
are discarded after a single use. It is estimated that between
4.8 and 12.7 million metric tons of plastic reach the planet`s
oceans each year. Currently, these residues are ubiquitous in the
ecosystem. Microplastics (MPs) are commonly defined as particles
smaller than 5 mm in size and originate from two main sources:
they can arise from the degradation of larger plastic debris or
they can be produced in microscopic size. Such particles can be
ingested by many marine species, leading to direct physical harm
and potential toxic effects. In addition, they accumulate in the
food chain via predation and reach edible species, which can even
pose risks to human health. The impacts caused by MPs have
already been studied, however, in Brazil, the studies are still
in an initial phase. Therefore, this work aims to compare the
distribution and abundance of microplastics found in seawater,
sediment and different tissues of Stramonita brasiliensis
collected on beaches subjected to different levels of
urbanization and anthropic impacts. Therefore, samples of
sediment, water and specimens of S. brasiliensis were collected
at 5 sampling points along the coast of Espírito Santo. The MPs
found were collected and deposited on filter papers arranged in
Petri dishes, WHERE they were viewed under a magnifying glass,
photographed, quantified, classified by type and the chemical
composition of three specimens was analyzed by Raman
Spectroscopy. The results show a directly proportional
relationship between urbanization and the availability of MPs in
the marine environment. In addition, 3 different types of
polymers were identified: polyurethane (PUR), polyethylene (PE)
and polyester (PES). Finally, S. brasiliensis is consolidated as
an excellent bioindicator for contamination by MPs due to the
high abundance of particles found in the collected organisms.

Key words: Microplastics; Gastropods; Stramonita brasiliensis;
anthropic impacts.

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