What are the toxicological effects of mercury in Arctic biota?

Rune Dietz, Christian Sonne, Niladri Basu, Birgit Braune, Todd O'Hara, Robert J Letcher, Tony Scheuhammer, Magnus Andersen, Claus Andreasen, Dennis Andriashek, Gert Asmund, Aurore Aubail, Hans J. Baagøe, Erik W Born, Hing M Chan, Andrew E Derocher, Philippe Grandjean, Katrina Knott, Maja Kirkegaard, Anke KreyNick Lunn, Francoise Messier, Marty Obbard, Morten Tange Olsen, Sonja Ostertag, Elizabeth Peacock, Aristeo Renzoni, Frank F Rigét, Janneche Utne Skaare, Gary Stern, Ian Stirling, Mitch Taylor, Oystein Wiig, Simon Wilson, Jon Aars

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftReviewForskningpeer review


This review critically evaluates the available mercury (Hg) data in Arctic marine biota and the Inuit population against toxicity threshold values. In particular marine top predators exhibit concentrations of mercury in their tissues and organs that are believed to exceed thresholds for biological effects. Species whose concentrations exceed threshold values include the polar bears (Ursus maritimus), beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas), pilot whale (Globicephala melas), hooded seal (Cystophora cristata), a few seabird species, and landlocked Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus). Toothed whales appear to be one of the most vulnerable groups, with high concentrations of mercury recorded in brain tissue with associated signs of neurochemical effects. Evidence of increasing concentrations in mercury in some biota in Arctic Canada and Greenland is therefore a concern with respect to ecosystem health.
TidsskriftScience of the Total Environment
Sider (fra-til)775-790
StatusUdgivet - 15. jan. 2013



Dietz, R., Sonne, C., Basu, N., Braune, B., O'Hara, T., Letcher, R. J., Scheuhammer, T., Andersen, M., Andreasen, C., Andriashek, D., Asmund, G., Aubail, A., Baagøe, H. J., Born, E. W., Chan, H. M., Derocher, A. E., Grandjean, P., Knott, K., Kirkegaard, M., ... Aars, J. (2013). What are the toxicological effects of mercury in Arctic biota? Science of the Total Environment, 443, 775-790. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2012.11.046