Pollution of the world’s oceans owing to anthropogenic input of plastics and other industrial wastes represents an increasing threat to the viability of marine ecosystems. Given that such pollutants accumulate in fish, crustaceans and mollusks, they enter the food chain and can be ingested by human consumers. Microparticles with dimensions of less than 5 mm present a particularly insidious problem. The development of new methods for quantifying the magnitude of the threat may help to develop effective measures to mitigate it.
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