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Spatio-temporal variability of trace elements fingerprints in cockle (Cerastoderma edule) shells and its relevance for tracing geographic origin
Ricardo, F.; Pimentel, T.; Génio, L.; Calado, R. (2017). Spatio-temporal variability of trace elements fingerprints in cockle (Cerastoderma edule) shells and its relevance for tracing geographic origin. NPG Scientific Reports 7(1): 9 pp. https://hdl.handle.net/10.1038/s41598-017-03381-w
In: Scientific Reports (Nature Publishing Group). Nature Publishing Group: London. ISSN 2045-2322; e-ISSN 2045-2322, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Ricardo, F.
  • Pimentel, T.
  • Génio, L.
  • Calado, R.

Abstract
    Understanding spatio-temporal variability of trace elements fingerprints (TEF) in bivalve shells is paramount to determine the discrimination power of this analytical approach and secure traceability along supply chains. Spatio-temporal variability of TEF was assessed in cockle (Cerastoderma edule) shells using inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Four elemental ratios (Mg/Ca, Mn/Ca, Sr/Ca and Ba/Ca) were measured from the shells of specimens originating from eight different ecosystems along the Portuguese coast, as well as from four different areas, within one of them, over two consecutive years (2013 and 2014). TEF varied significantly in the shells of bivalves originating from the eight ecosystems surveyed in the present study. Linear discriminant function analyses assigned sampled cockles to each of the eight ecosystems with an average accuracy of 90%. Elemental ratios also displayed significant differences between the two consecutive years in the four areas monitored in the same ecosystem. Overall, while TEF displayed by cockle shells can be successfully used to trace their geographic origin, a periodical verification of TEF (>6 months and <1 year) is required to control for temporal variability whenever comparing specimens originating from the same area collected more than six months apart.

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