White pollution is everywhere, microplastics found in human blood for the first time

“Our blood, the river of life, has plastic in it.” Dutch scientists recently demonstrated the seriousness of plastic pollution. Using new analytical tools, the team proved that microplastics can also enter human tissues.

Whether it’s the wind, the ocean, or even ultraviolet light, plastic bags and bottlings can be turned into smaller pieces, eventually becoming invisible microplastics, making it difficult for scientists to track the movements of plastics flowing into nature.

These microplastics may also be absorbed by organisms. It is currently known that microplastics can cause adverse effects on many marine organisms, such as causing aneurysms in fish and affecting the cognition of hermit crabs. , we can find that there are actually microplastic particles in human tissues and feces. In the future, we will be able to further investigate the impact of plastics on the human body based on this research.

A team of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, the Dutch research center Deltares, UMC Amsterdam and the University of Amsterdam Medical Center teamed up to develop a newly developed analytical tool that can identify nanoplastic particles in human blood. The study collected samples from 22 healthy donors to confirm whether they contained 5 different plastic polymers.

The study noted that three-quarters of the subjects were found to have plastic particles in their blood, the first evidence of plastic entering human blood, with an average of 1.6 micrograms of microplastics per milliliter of blood, or about one teaspoon per 1,000 liters of water. plastic.

Heather Leslie of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam said the team has now shown that we find plastic in the blood, the river of life in humans. Among them, polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polyethylene (PE), and styrene are the most common plastics. The researchers also described in the paper how plastics enter the bloodstream, thinking that it may enter the body through mucosal contact, and pointed out that Particles between 1 nanometer and 20 microns can be inhaled through airborne transmission.

So what are the implications for human health? The research points out that the plastic particles can be toxic to cells and change their shape, and mouse studies also point to the possibility of infiltrating the cerebrovascular barrier and causing high cholesterol and heart disease, but this is still an ongoing research and hopefully the next step How plastic moves from the blood to other tissues or organs.

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