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Analysis of Scientific Report Dealing with Pbdes and Pcdes in the Environment

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Analysis of Scientific Report Dealing with PBDEs and PCDEs in the Environment

The book "Engaging Inquiry: Research and Writing in the Disciplines" was written by Judy Kirscht and Mark Schlenz to advise scholars on how to write in the following three areas: natural sciences, social sciences and humanities. Chapter 1 of the book, Inquiry and Writing in the Sciences, explains the way Kirscht and Schlenz believe we should write an observational report. To clarify, Kirscht and Schlenz clearly state that "the purpose of an observation study and report is to continuously compare the evidence of the world with existing theory and knowledge in order to confirm or raise questions" (23). A great scientific report that followed Kirscht and Schlenz's guidelines to a point was Exposure to PBDEs and PCDEs Associated with the Consumption of Edible Marine Species written by: Jose L. Domingo et al.

Kirscht and Schlenz describe the guidelines that must be followed to have a well written observational report. First the author(s) will explain the title and abstract parts of the paper, which basically state what study they are dealing with. After these two sections appears the body of the report. Kirscht and Schlenz refer to the body of an observational report as "IMRAD," which has five sections, including the Introduction, Methods and Materials, Results, Discussion and Conclusion (32). When the author(s) is finished with all the standards to writing an observational report, they will state all of the sources they used for the report on the reference page.

Jose L. Domingo and others wrote the scientific report entitled Exposure to PBDEs and PCDEs Associated with the Consumption of Edible Marine Species, a very detailed article on how harmful chemicals, such as polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and polychlorinated diphenyl ethers (PCDEs), are being found in much of the food source of Catalonia, Spain. The aquatic species is then ingested by humans, and although it has not yet posed a threat, the high level of these chemicals being found in human adipose tissue has potential dangers. The beginning paragraphs of the scientific report mainly define exactly what PBDEs and PCDEs are and where they are coming from. To elaborate Domingo et al specifically state that, "The PBDEs are a class of

chemicals widely used as flame retardants in a number of different commercial and industrial products (electronic equipment, cars, textiles, insulation, etc.). PBDEs are

recognized as ubiquitous environmental pollutants, which have been identified in various media from around the world. PBDEs have some physicochemical properties similar to various other persistent organic pollutants (POPs), which are known to bioaccumulate in the environment. The stability and lipophilicity of PBDEs causes them to biomagnify up the food chain, increasing in concentration at each successively higher trophic level (Domingo, 4394)." They also state that, "PCDEs are another group of halogenated aromatic compounds which are structurally related to PCBs. PCDEs mainly originate from byproducts of chlorophenols and chlorinated phenoxyacetic acids, as well as from incomplete combustions (e.g., waste incinerators).The extensive use in recent decades of chlorinated phenols, especially pentachlorophenol as an herbicide and in wood preserving formulations, has led to a ubiquitous presence of PCDEs. These compounds are quite resistant to degradation, are persistent in the environment, and bioaccumulate in aquatic media. PCDEs have been detected in a number of environmental samples, as well as in human adipose tissue (Domingo, 4395)." Domingo and the others had to briefly describe the chemicals that were being found in the fish species, so that all the readers would know where these harmful chemicals are coming from and how they are reacting in the environment. The also do a great job in following Kirscht and Schlenz's way of writing the title section because they state the objects and issues that are under study thoroughly.

The next section of the scientific report has to do with the materials and methods used to get the samples of fish contaminated with the chemicals. "In March-April 2005, edible marine species were randomly acquired in local fish markets, big supermarkets, and grocery stores from six important cities of Catalonia, Spain, whose inhabitants mean approximately 60% of the total population of Catalonia. The selected fish and seafood

species were the following: sardine, tuna, anchovy, mackerel, swordfish, salmon, hake, red mullet, sole, cuttlefish, squid, clam, mussel, and shrimp. According to recent studies of the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture and Fishery, all these 14 species are included among the most consumed marine species by the Spanish population. A total of 42 composite samples (3 for each species) were analyzed for the levels of PBDEs and PCDEs. Each composite sample was made up of 20 individual samples of



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