Interaction between microplastics and microorganism as well as gut microbiota: A consideration on environmental animal and human health

Sci Total Environ. 2019 Jun 1:667:94-100. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.02.380. Epub 2019 Feb 26.


Microplastics (MPs) has gradually become a global environmental pollution problem and may harm human and animal health. In recent years, a large number of studies had shown that MPs had various toxicological effects on different organisms. At the same time, a number of studies had also shown that gut microbiota was closely related to host health and as a toxicity target for certain environmental pollutants including MPs. The fact is that more and more studies proved that MPs not only could interact with microorganism directly but also serve as a carrier for other pollutants and interacted with microorganism indirectly. In this review, we summarized the interactions between MPs and microorganisms as well as gut microbiota, and considered the possible impacts of MPs on environmental animal and human health, suggesting that the environmental microorganisms and the gut microbiota of animals were also the very important target for MPs. We hope that more studies pay more attention to focus on the relationship between MPs, gut microbiota, and environmental animals and human health in the future.

Keywords: Environmental health; Gut microbiota; Microorganism; Microplastics.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Environmental Health*
  • Environmental Pollutants / adverse effects*
  • Gastrointestinal Microbiome / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Plastics / adverse effects*
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical / adverse effects


  • Environmental Pollutants
  • Plastics
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical