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Report No.

Characterizations of formed biofilms and microbial communities on microplastics in coastal rivers of Japan

Battulga, B. ; Nakayama, Masataka  ; Atarashi-Andoh, Mariko  ; Koarashi, Jun   

Plastic debris in the aquatic environment has become a growing concern due to their long-term ecological consequences. The current study is focused on microbial community composition on microplastics (MPs; sizes $$<$$5 mm) and characteristics of MP-associated biofilms in coastal river environments of Japan in order to understand the impact of MP-associated biofilms on aquatic organic matter cycling. The aims of the current study are i) extraction and characterization of microbial biofilms on MPs and ii) identification of diversity and composition of microbial communities on MP surfaces and in surrounding surface waters and sediments. The samples were collected from two coastal rivers during 2021-2022 on a seasonal basis. In this study, we proposed a new method to extract biofilms from MPs using ultrasound-assisted syringe treatment for isotopic analysis. Morphotypes of MPs and associated specific microbial taxa as well as seasonal differences were also observed.



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