Heavy Metal Levels in Tissues of Merlangius merlangus (Linnaeus, 1758) from the Black Sea Coast of Turkey and Potential Risks to Human Health  

Levent Bat , Elif Arıcı
University of Sinop Fisheries Faculty Department of Hydrobiology, Akliman 57000 Sinop, Turkey
Author    Correspondence author
International Journal of Marine Science, 2016, Vol. 6, No. 10   doi: 10.5376/ijms.2016.06.0010
Received: 20 Jan., 2016    Accepted: 24 Mar., 2016    Published: 24 Mar., 2016
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Bat L., and Arıcı E., 2016, Heavy metal levels in tissues of Merlangius merlangus (Linnaeus, 1758) from the Black Sea coast of Turkey and potential risks to human health, International Journal of Marine Science, 6(10): 1-8 (doi: 10.5376/ijms.2016.06.0010)


In this study, heavy metal concentrations (Fe, Zn, Mn, Co, Cu, Cr, Pb, Cd, Ni, Al and Hg) were analysed in muscle, liver, eggs and gills of Merlangius merlangus caught from the Sinop coast of the Black Sea between September 2014 and February 2015. Al, Ni and Hg in all tissues were below the detection limits. Cd and Pb were not detected in the edible parts of M. merlangus. Gill and liver tissues showed higher metal concentrations than edible tissues including eggs. The highest concentrations were found in gills (Fe: 57±9 mg/kg wet wt., Mn: 2.4±0.2 mg/kg wet wt., Cr: 0.65±0.05 mg/kg wet wt. and Pb: 0.88±0.006 mg/kg wet wt.) and in liver (Zn: 43±6 mg/kg wet wt., Co: 0.88±0.03 mg/kg wet wt., Cu 0.41±0.02 mg/kg wet wt. and Cd: 0.075±0.006 mg/kg wet wt.). The lowest metal levels were determined in muscle tissues of whiting followed eggs. Thus the concentration of heavy metals in edible part of whiting did not exceed the permissible limits proposed by European Union and Turkish regulations, MAFF, EFSA. The average weekly intakes of heavy metals studied per body weight values not exceeded the Provisional Tolerable Weekly Intake (PTWI) established. Therefore, it may be concluded that these 11 heavy metals should not pose any health threat to the consumers resulting from the consumption of M. merlangus.

Heavy metals; Merlangius merlangus; Sinop coast; Black Sea; Provisional Tolerable Weekly Intake (PTWI); Estimated Daily Intake (EDI); Estimated Weekly Intake (EWI); Legal thresholds, Commission Regulation (EC)
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