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Journal of Environmental and Public Health
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 3506949, 12 pages
Research Article

Horizontal and Vertical Distribution of Heavy Metals in Farm Produce and Livestock around Lead-Contaminated Goldmine in Dareta and Abare, Zamfara State, Northern Nigeria

1Toxicology Unit, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria
2National Veterinary Research Institute, Vom, Nigeria
3Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Faculty of Science, Rivers State University of Science and Technology, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria

Correspondence should be addressed to O. E. Orisakwe

Received 28 December 2016; Accepted 6 April 2017; Published 2 May 2017

Academic Editor: Evelyn O. Talbott

Copyright © 2017 O. E. Orisakwe et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Hitherto studies in response to the June 2010 lead poisoning, Zamfara State, Nigeria, have focused on clinical interventions without information on livestock and other metals. Objective. This study has investigated the distribution of heavy metals in farm produce and livestock around lead-contaminated goldmine in Dareta and Abare, Zamfara State, Nigeria. Methods. Vegetables, soil, water, blood, and different meat samples were harvested from goat, sheep, cattle, and chicken from Dareta, Abare, and Gusau communities. The samples were digested with 10 mL of a mix of nitric and perchloric acids; the mixture was then heated to dryness. Lead, cadmium, zinc, chromium, copper, magnesium, and nickel were analysed using flame Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer. The daily intake, bioaccumulation factor, and target hazard quotient (THQ) were calculated. Results. Chicken bone-muscles from Dareta had the highest concentrations of lead, zinc, and nickel (28.2750, 16.1650, and 4.2700 mg/kg, resp.), while chicken brain had the highest levels of cadmium, magnesium (0.3800 and 67.5400 mg/kg), and chromium (6.1650 mg/kg, kidney tissue inclusive). Conclusion. In addition to lead, cadmium may also be of concern in the contaminated mining communities of Zamfara State, Nigeria, given the high levels of cadmium in meat and vegetables samples from these areas.