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      Bioaccumulation of Trace Elements in Ruditapes philippinarum from China: Public Health Risk Assessment Implications

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          The Manila clam Ruditapes philippinarum is one of the most important commercial bivalve species consumed in China. Evaluated metal burden in bivalve molluscs can pose potential risks to public health as a result of their frequent consumption. In this study, concentrations of 10 trace elements (Cu, Zn, Mn, Se, Ni, Cd, Cr, Pb, Hg and As) were determined in samples of the bivalve Ruditapes philippinarum, collected from nine mariculture zones along the coast of China between November and December in 2010, in order to evaluate the status of elemental metal pollution in these areas. Also, a public health risk assessment was untaken to assess the potential risks associated with the consumption of clams. The ranges of concentrations found for Cu, Zn, Mn, Se, Ni, Cd, Cr, Pb, Hg and As in R. philippinarum were 12.1–38.0, 49.5–168.3, 42.0–68.0, 4.19–8.71, 4.76–14.32, 0.41–1.11, 0.94–4.74, 0.32–2.59, 0.03–0.23 and 0.46–11.95 mg·kg −1 dry weight, respectively. Clear spatial variations were found for Cu, Zn, Cr, Pb, Hg and As, whereas Mn, Se, Ni, and Cd did not show significant spatial variation. Hotspots of trace element contamination in R. philippinarum can be found along the coast of China, from the north to the south, especially in the Bohai and Yellow Seas. Based on a 58.1 kg individual consuming 29 g of bivalve molluscs per day, the values of the estimated daily intake (EDI) of trace elements analyzed were significantly lower than the values of the accepted daily intake (ADI) established by Joint Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization Expert Committee on Food Additives (JFAO/WHO) and the guidelines of the reference does (RfD) established by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA). Additionally, the risk of trace elements to humans through R. philippinarum consumption was also assessed. The calculated hazard quotients (HQ) of all trace elements were less than 1. Consequently, there was no obvious public risk from the intake of these trace elements through R. philippinarum consumption.

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          The essential trace elements.

           W MERTZ (1981)
          Essential trace elements are required by man in amounts ranging from 50 micrograms to 18 milligrams per day. Acting as catalytic or structural components of larger molecules, they have specific functions and are indispensable for life. Research during the past quarter of a century has identified as essential six trace elements whose functions were previously unknown. In addition to the long-known deficiencies of iron and iodine, signs of deficiency for chromium, copper, zinc, and selenium have been identified in free-living populations. Four trace elements were proved to be essential for two or more animal species during the past decade alone. Marginal or severe trace element imbalances can be considered risk factors for several diseases of public health importance, but proof of cause and effect relationships will depend on a more complete understanding of basic mechanisms of action and on better analytical procedures and functional tests to determine marginal trace element status in man.
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            Body weight and mortality among men and women in China.

            The effect of underweight and obesity on mortality has not been well characterized in Asian populations. To examine the relationship between body mass index (BMI) and mortality in Chinese adults. A prospective cohort study in a nationally representative sample of 169,871 Chinese men and women aged 40 years or older. Data on body weight and covariables were obtained at a baseline examination in 1991 using a standard protocol. Follow-up evaluation was conducted in 1999-2000, with a response rate of 93.4% (n = 158,666). Body mass index and all-cause mortality. After excluding those participants with missing body weight or height values, 154,736 adults were included in the analysis. After adjustment for age, sex, cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, physical activity, education, geographic region (north vs south), and urbanization (urban vs rural), a U-shaped association between BMI and all-cause mortality was observed (P<.001). Using those participants with a BMI of 24.0 to 24.9 as the reference group, the relative risks of all-cause mortality across categories of BMI were 1.65 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.54-1.77) for BMI less than 18.5, 1.31 (95% CI, 1.22-1.41) for BMI 18.5 to 19.9, 1.20 (95% CI, 1.11-1.29) for BMI 20.0 to 20.9, 1.12 (95% CI, 1.04-1.21) for BMI 21.0 to 21.9, 1.11 (95% CI, 1.03-1.20) for BMI 22.0 to 22.9, 1.09 (95% CI, 1.01-1.19) for BMI 23.0 to 23.9, 1.00 (95% CI, 0.92-1.08) for BMI 25.0 to 26.9, 1.15 (95% CI, 1.06-1.24) for BMI 27.0 to 29.9, and 1.29 (95% CI, 1.16-1.42) for BMI 30.0 or more. The U-shaped association existed even after excluding participants who were current or former smokers, heavy alcohol drinkers, or who had prevalent chronic illness at the baseline examination, or who died during the first 3 years of follow-up. A similar association was observed between BMI and mortality from cardiovascular disease, cancer, and other causes. Our results indicate that both underweight and obesity were associated with increased mortality in the Chinese adult population. Furthermore, our findings support the use of a single common recommendation for defining overweight and obesity among all racial and ethnic groups.
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              Health risk assessment of heavy metal exposure to street dust in the zinc smelting district, Northeast of China.

              Heavy metal contamination in the street dust due to metal smelting in the industrial district of Huludao city was investigated. Spatial distribution of Hg, Pb, Cd, Zn and Cu in the street dust was elucidated. Meanwhile, noncancer effect and cancer effect of children and adults due to exposure to the street dust were estimated. The maximum Hg, Pb, Cd, Zn and Cu contents in the street dust are 5.212, 3903, 726.2, 79,869, and 1532 mg kg(-1), and respectively 141, 181, 6724, 1257 and 77.4 times as high as the background values in soil. The trends for Hg, Pb, Cd, Zn and Cu are similar with higher concentrations trending Huludao zinc plant (HZP). The exponential equation fits quite well for the variations of Pb, Cd, Zn and Cu contents with distance from the pollution sources, but not for Hg. The biggest contribution to street dust is atmospheric deposition due to metal smelting, but traffic density makes slight contribution to heavy metal contamination. According to the calculation on Hazard Index (HI), in the case of noncancer effect, the ingestion of dust particles of children and adults in Huludao city appears to be the route of exposure to street dust that results in a higher risk for heavy metals, followed by dermal contact. The inhalation of resuspended particles through the mouth and nose is almost negligible. The inhalation of Hg vapour as the fourth exposure pathway to street dust is accounting for the main exposure. Children are experiencing the potential health risk due to HI for Pb larger than safe level (1) and Cd close to 1. Besides, cancer risk of Cd due to inhalation exposure is low. Copyright 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

                Author and article information

                Int J Environ Res Public Health
                Int J Environ Res Public Health
                International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
                02 April 2013
                April 2013
                : 10
                : 4
                : 1392-1405
                College of Fisheries and Life Science, Dalian Ocean University, Dalian 116023, China; E-Mails: yangfeng@ (F.Y.); zhaoliqiang@ (L.Z.); wangyuan@ (W.Y.)
                Author notes

                These authors contributed equally to this work.

                [* ] Author to whom correspondence should be addressed; E-Mail: yanxiwu@ ; Tel./Fax: +86-0411-8476-3026.
                © 2013 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

                This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution license (


                Public health

                china, risk assessment, public health, trace element, ruditapes philippinarum


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