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Anthropogenic and naturally-occurring organobromine compounds in fish oil dietary supplements
Covaci, A.; Voorspoels, S.; Vetter, W.; Gelbin, A.; Jorens, P.G.; Blust, R.; Neels, H. (2007). Anthropogenic and naturally-occurring organobromine compounds in fish oil dietary supplements. Environ. Sci. Technol. 41(15): 5237-5244. dx.doi.org/10.1021/es070239g
In: Environmental Science and Technology. American Chemical Society: Washington. ISSN 0013-936X, more
Peer reviewed article

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Keywords
    Brominated hydrocarbons; Fish oils; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Covaci, A., more
  • Voorspoels, S., more
  • Vetter, W.
  • Gelbin, A.
  • Jorens, P.G.
  • Blust, R., more
  • Neels, H.

Abstract
    Fish oil dietary supplements (FODS) are recommended to increase the intake of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), renowned for their beneficial effects on human health. However, FODS also contain anthropogenic contaminants, such as polychlorinated biphenyls and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). Sixty-nine (n = 69) PUFA-enriched FODS from 37 producers were collected in 2006 and then analyzed for their levels of organobrominated compounds. Levels of the sum of tri- to hepta-BDEs (BDEs 28, 47, 49, 66, 85, 99, 100, 153, 154, and 183) were typically below 5 ng/g oil, while only a few had higher values of up to 44 ng/g oil. Several peaks in the chromatograms were identified as methoxylated PBDEs (MeO-PBDEs) and polybrominated hexahydroxanthene derivatives (PBHDs). These two groups of compounds have been suggested to be produced by marine organisms (e.g., algae and sponges) and have also been reported in marine samples, such as fish and marine mammals. Median concentrations of MeO-PBDEs and PBHDs (6.2 and 5.3 ng/g oil, respectively) were higher than median concentrations of PBDEs (0.6 ng/g oil), and their maximum values were 1670 and 200 ng/g oil, respectively. FODS are intended to be consumed on a daily basis, and the median daily intakes of MeO-PBDEs and PBHDs from FODS were 3 and 6 times higher than the median intake of PBDEs (3 ng/day). Consumption of FODS does not appear to substantially increase the total dietary intake of PBDEs since the median daily intake from FODS was 8 and 16 times lower than the intake from either fish consumption alone or from total diet. These findings indicate that FODS might be a suitable alternative to fish consumption for certain segments of the population for which fish consumption advices have been issued. The present study also strongly supports the need for not only the inclusion of new anthropogenic contaminants (e.g., PBDEs) but also of naturally occurring compounds in monitoring schemes of marine products destined for human consumption.

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