Heavy Metal and Trace Element Levels in Hair Samples from Fishermen in Turkey: The Fish/Ermen Heavy Metal Study (FHMS)

Demirtaş Y., TOPBAŞ M., Çamur D., ALBAY M., İlter H., Ayoğlu F. N., ...More

BIOLOGICAL TRACE ELEMENT RESEARCH, vol.202, no.1, pp.34-45, 2024 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 202 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s12011-023-03653-9
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Aqualine, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, Chemical Abstracts Core, EMBASE, Food Science & Technology Abstracts, Pollution Abstracts, Veterinary Science Database
  • Page Numbers: pp.34-45
  • Keywords: Fishermen, Hair, Heavy metal, Seafood consumption, Trace element
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


Toxic chemicals from polluted seas can enter the human body through seafood consumption and cause health problems. The aim of this study was to evaluate the levels of selected heavy metals and trace elements among fishermen who frequently consumed seafood and controls who consumed seafood less frequently in four provinces on the shores of the Sea of Marmara, which is heavily polluted by industrial activities. Fourteen elements (antimony, arsenic, cadmium, chromium, copper, iron, lead, manganese, mercury, nickel, selenium, strontium, vanadium, and zinc) were analyzed in hair samples using the inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometer method. Levels of arsenic (0.147 +/- 0.067 mu g/g vs. 0.129 +/- 0.070 mu g/g, p = 0.025), chromium (0.327 +/- 0.096 mu g/g vs. 0.269 +/- 0.116 mu g/g, p < 0.01), nickel (0.469 +/- 0.339 mu g/g vs. 0.403 +/- 0.368 mu g/g, p = 0.015), strontium (1.987 +/- 1.241 mu g/g vs. 1.468 +/- 1.190 mu g/g, p < 0.01), and zinc (103.3 +/- 43.1 mu g/g vs. 92.7 +/- 37.4 mu g/g, p = 0.047) were higher in the fisherman group than in the control group. No difference was found between the groups in terms of other elements. The findings suggest that heavy metal-trace element contamination in the Sea of Marmara may increase the exposure levels of individuals to some chemicals through seafood consumption.