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Total and toxic arsenic levels in North Sea fish
De Gieter, M.; Leermakers, M.; Van Ryssen, R.; Noyen, J.; Goeyens, L.; Baeyens, W. (2002). Total and toxic arsenic levels in North Sea fish. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 43(4): 406-417
In: Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. Springer: New York. ISSN 0090-4341, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 99685 [ OMA ]

Keywords
    Arsenic; Biological poisons; Fish; Levels; ANE, North Sea [Marine Regions]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • De Gieter, M., more
  • Leermakers, M., more
  • Van Ryssen, R., more
  • Noyen, J.
  • Goeyens, L., more
  • Baeyens, W., more

Abstract
    Levels of arsenic contamination in muscle and liver tissue of 25 sea fish and 4 shellfish species from the North Sea were determined. Analyses were done by both ICP-MS and HG-AFS to distinguish between nontoxic and toxic fractions of As. Highest total As concentrations were found in lemon sole, dogfish, ray, and witch. Average total As concentrations in these fish species were higher than 20 mg kg-1 WW. The same species as well as the other flatfishes contained the highest amounts of toxic As (> 0.1 mg kg-1 WW). Toxic fractions (AsTox/AsT%) above 2% were found in the following six species: seabass, ling, john dory, pouting, dab, and brill. No preferential concentration in the liver compared to the muscle was observed. In a worst-case scenario (when fish has been dried or smoked and the toxic As level is high; for example 0.5 mg kg-1 WW), the As content of North Sea marine food may reach harmful levels. A normalization reflecting the toxic potential of sea fish was made. Shark and ray and most flatfish species have positive (high) normalized AsTox values. By ANOVA testing we compared the individual AsT concentrations of samples of the same species (intraspecies variability). Significant differences for some fish species were observed; significantly higher AsT concentrations were found in dogfish from the French coast versus the western North Sea and in common sole from the Bay of the Seine, in the north of France, versus the western North Sea.

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