Background: Persistent organochlorine compounds including Organochlorine Pesticides
(OCPs) and Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) are one of the important components of
chemical pollutants that enter into the Egyptian marine environment through different sources,
more particularly from estuaries.
Objective: The present study aimed to investigate concentrations of PCBs and pesticides in
sediments and muscle tissues of Siganus rivulatus from El-Mex Bay and Marsa Matrouh areas.
Methods: Sediment and fish samples were collected from El-Mex Bay of Alexandria and
Matrouhcoast and transported to the laboratory for extraction and analysis by using GC-MS.
Results: In general, concentrations range of PCBs and pesticides detected by GC-Ms in sediment
samples revealed much more pollution in El-Mex Bay by PCBs and pesticides than Matrouh area.
The present study indicated that concentrations of PCBs in sediments from El-Mex Bay were 9-
fold more than those from Matrouh coast. Variations of pesticide concentrations in sediment
samples were mainly due to the ongoing processes of adsorption/desorption and uptake by living
organisms. In the meantime, the concentrations of PCBs in fish from El-Mex Bay were 11.5-fold
more than those from Matrouh coast. Similarly, the concentrations of total pesticides in fish collected
from El-Mex Bay were 7-fold more than those collected from Matrouh coast. Generally
speaking, sediment samples had higher concentrations of PCBs and pesticides than fish samples
reflecting its great capacity to absorb and accumulate such pollutants. The present study revealed
also the presence of low concentrations of DDT metabolites and indicator PCBs in both areas. It
reports important information regarding the presence of p,p’-DDE, p,p’- DDD, PCB 52 and PCB
153 in almost all fish samples from the two Egyptian coastal lagoons which are mainly due to a
previous use of DDT in agricultural activity, high environmental persistence because of their
chemical and thermal stability, different climatic environmental conditions, marine currents,
different migratory and feeding habits of aquatic organisms.
Conclusion: The results of the present study add new data about Organochlorine Pesticides
(OCPs) and Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) to the global database about the contamination of
the Egyptian marine environment and provide valuable information for regulatory actions.
Therefore, the aim of this work is to determine the distribution and concentrations of PCBs and
pesticide s in sediments and fish from two Egyptian coastal areas along the Mediterranean. One
of the main important objectives is to compare the obtained results with data reported worldwide
to evaluate the suitability of the Egyptian marine environment along the Mediterranean Sea for
recreation and also the suitability of fish for continuous human consumption by the Public.