Close up side shot of microplastics lay on people hand.Concept of water pollution and global warming.

Latest Microplastics Finding: Human Heart Tissue

Microplastics have been detected in human lungs and placentas, stool and blood, and the latest finding: heart tissue. In a pilot study published in Environmental Science & Technology, researchers studied 15 patients, ranging in age from 41 to 75, who underwent heart surgery at the Beijing Anzhen Hospital in China. Through the use of laser-direct infrared chemical imaging, researchers discovered nine types of microplastics were found across five types of tissue, with the largest measuring 469 micrometers in diameter. These included polypropylene (used in food …

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Could Plastic Recycling Facilities Be Contributing to the Microplastics Pollution Problem?

Earlier this month, a team of researchers out of the UK, Canada, and New Zealand published a first-of-its-kind study in the peer-reviewed Journal of Hazardous Material Advances, examining the microplastics pollution potential for plastic recycling facilities. The study found that the recycling process, even with plastic pollution mitigation and high removal efficiencies, might potentially discharge tons of microplastics into waterways.

The purpose of the study was to identify if the state-of-the-art unnamed UK plastic recycling facility (PRF) subject to the study discharged microplastics into …

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Close-up side shot of hands shows microplastic waste contaminated with the seaside sand. Microplastics are contaminated in the sea. Concept of water pollution and global warming.

California Looks to Expand Regulation of Microplastics and PPD Derivatives

California has begun the public process for a potential regulatory proposal expanding the list of chemicals that may be regulated under its Safer Consumer Products Program (SCP). The California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC), part of the California Environmental Protection Agency, has proposed adding microplastics and para-Phenylenediamine (PPD) derivatives to its Candidate Chemicals List (CCL) in an attempt to control their impact on human health and the environment.

PPD derivatives are a family of chemicals used in a variety of industrial applications. The only PPD derivative …

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New Microplastics Requirements Put California’s Drinking Water to the Test

As previously reported in ELM, microplastics – plastic fragments smaller than 5 millimeters in length – have been found everywhere from Antarctica ( to human lung tissue ( to, especially, bodies of water ( This ubiquity has led to an increased number of studies and ever-improving sampling methods for the purposes of reversing the omnipresence of microplastics. 

After years of research involving several dozen laboratories, last week, California’s Water Resources Control Board approved microplastics testing requirements – the world’s …

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