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Journal of Toxicology
Volume 2017, Article ID 2458293, 12 pages
Research Article

Metals in Fishes from Yongshu Island, Southern South China Sea: Human Health Risk Assessment

1Fujian Provincial Key Laboratory for Coastal Ecology and Environmental Studies, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361102, China
2Coastal and Ocean Management Institute, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361102, China
3College of Ocean and Earth Science, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361102, China
4State Key Laboratory of Marine Environmental Science, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361102, China
5College of Ocean Science and Resource, National Taiwan Ocean University, Keelung 20224, Taiwan
6The Monitoring Center of Marine Environment and Fishery Resources, Fujian Provincial Department of Ocean and Fisheries, Fuzhou 350003, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Hongwei Ke; nc.ude.umx@ek_iewgnoh

Received 14 July 2017; Revised 5 September 2017; Accepted 19 September 2017; Published 19 October 2017

Academic Editor: Zongming Ren

Copyright © 2017 Zhai Wu 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.


In order to assess the bioaccumulation of metals associated with gender, tissues, and their potential ecological risk, four species of fish were collected from the Yongshu Island in the Southern South China Sea. Metals and stable Pb isotopes in their tissues (muscle, gill, liver, intestine, and ovary) were determined. The concentrations of metals (mg/kg, dry weight) in these species were ND–21.60 (Cd), 1.21–4.87 (Cr), 0.42–22.4 (Cu), 1.01–51.8 (Mn), 0.30–3.28 (Ni), 6.04–1.29 × 103 (Zn), 14.89–1.40 × 103 (Fe), and 0.22–3.36 (Pb). In general, the liver and intestine absorbed more metals than the other tissues. Metals accumulation can be influenced by gender and feeding behavior and in fact, female fish and dietary exposure are more prone to accumulate metals. In addition, Pb isotopic ratios indicated that all species had significant biological fractionation, which may not make them good tracers for source identification. The metal concentrations of most samples were lower than the national standard values of the FAO (USA), which suggested that human consumption of these species may not cause health risks. However, since the surrounding areas are developing rapidly, the potential environmental risk of metals will intensify and should receive more attention.