Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2022_NH_Chen

Uptake and bioaccumulation of PFAS and precursor compounds in lake food webs

Institute: New Hampshire
USGS Grant Number:
Year Established: 2022 Start Date: 2022-12-01 End Date: 2025-11-30
Total Federal Funds: $250,000 Total Non-Federal Funds: $250,000

Principal Investigators: Celia Chen

Project Summary: Per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of chemicals which are ubiquitous contaminants in freshwater environments and pose health risks to humans and wildlife that consume fish. However, the pathways and processes by which PFAS bioaccumulate into and move through aquatic food webs require better understanding. Building on recent studies of PFAS levels in freshwater sport fish and loon eggs, this study will examine PFAS movement from lake sediment and water to fish and other organisms in six lakes in New Hampshire where elevated concentrations of PFAS have been found. These studies will provide information on the types and amounts of key PFAS compounds in water and sediments of lakes and in the resident lake organisms. The project will investigate how PFAS are taken up into aquatic organisms, transferred form lower to higher levels of the food web, and possibly transformed within organisms.