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Paint Particles in Marine Sediment: Interactions with Microbiota and Effects on Sediment Processes

01.05.2021 - 31.07.2024
Project manager:
Alexander Tagg
DFG - Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
Focus 4: Coastal seas and society

Paint particles are an important and growing pollution in marine systems. Despite being included under the remit of microplastics, and the considerable amount of resarch dedicated to microplastic pollution, paint particle pollution remains notably under-researched and poorly understood. Recent resarch by Tagg et al. demonstrated paint particles in Baltic marine sediment have a fundamentally distinct biofilm community from not only sediment or water, but also other, more traditional, microplastics. It was also noted by Tagg et al. that certain paints demonstarted a clear pattern of sulfate-reducing bacteria enrichment, although the reason for this could not be determined. Using these findings as a starting point, the PaintSed project aims to determine which attributes (especially focussing on aintifouling properties) of certain paints are behind fundamental changes to microbial communities in Baltic Sea sediment.  


  • Tagg, A. S., T. Sperlea, C. Hassenrück, B. Kreikemeyer, D. Fischer and M. Labrenz (2024). Microplastic-antifouling paint particle contamination alters microbial communities in surrounding marine sediment. Sci. Total Environ. 926: 171863, doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2024.171863
  • Tagg, A. S. (2023). Microplastic paint particle production for spiking experiments; silicone rubber as application material provide high yield with low effort. Micropl. Nanopl. 3: 12, doi: 10.1186/s43591-023-00061-7