A man hugs his dog
Photo by Cynthia Smith on Unsplash

Microplastics found in the testicles of both man and man’s best friend

A new study published in Toxicological Sciences detected microplastics in the tissue of both human and dog testicles.

In short:

  • In total, twelve different types of microplastics were found in human and dog testes.
  • These microplastics were detected in every tissue sample tested, although the amount varied significantly between individuals.
  • Overall, humans’ testes contained three times the amount of microplastics in comparison to dogs’.

Key quote:

“Significant knowledge gaps remain regarding the internal levels of microplastics and their correlation with environmental plastic exposure and reproductive health impacts.”

Why this matters:

Plastic use has continued to grow exponentially since the mid-twentieth century, with nearly a metric ton of plastic waste produced for every person on the planet. Recent studies have confirmed that microplastics are present in everything from bottled water to meat and all parts of the human body that have been examined. The questions this study raises about the impacts of plastic pollution on male fertility are critical and warrant more research.

Related EHN coverage:

More resources:

Jamie Hu, Chelin et al. for Toxicological Sciences. May 15, 2024

About the author(s):

Katherine McMahon
Katherine McMahon
Katherine McMahon is a Science Administrative Assistant at Environmental Health Sciences.
Sarah Howard
Sarah Howard
Howard is the Program Manager at the Healthy Environment and Endocrine Disruptor Strategies (HEEDS), a program of Environmental Health Sciences.

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