Title: Impacts of farmed fish consumption and food trade on methylmercury exposure in China.
Authors: Liu, Maodian; Chen, Long; He, Yipeng; Baumann, Zofia; Mason, Robert P; Shen, Huizhong; Yu, Chenghao; Zhang, Wei; Zhang, Qianggong; Wang, Xuejun
Published In Environ Int, (2018 11)
Abstract: The global pollutant mercury (Hg), especially as methylmercury (MeHg), threatens human and ecosystem health. But major contributors of MeHg exposure to people in China remain highly debated. We developed the China Mercury Exposure Assessment (CMEA) model, which incorporates human exposure pathways for MeHg and total Hg (THg), the interregional, including international and interprovincial, food trading as well as human physiology to provide a comprehensive system that can evaluate the pathway of Hg forms to human consumers in China. Based on the CMEA model that employed the most comprehensive and recent data, we have found that the Probable Daily Intake (PDI) of MeHg for the Chinese population was 0.057 (range: 0.036-0.091 as 60% confidence interval) μg·kg-1·day-1, while that of THg was 0.35 (range: 0.22-0.55) μg·kg-1·day-1. MeHg exposure was dominated by fish intake, especially by farm-raised freshwater fish due to higher consumption of these fish. In 2011, fish intake contributed to 56% to the total MeHg exposure, followed by rice (26%). Consumption of farm-raised fish reduced human exposure to MeHg by 33%. On the other hand, interregional food trading increased MeHg exposure of the Chinese population, as a whole, by 7.6%. The international and interprovincial food trades contributed to 5.1% and 22% of MeHg intake, respectively. For the whole China, fish intake related exposure to MeHg was highest for the Eastern and Northeastern populations, while Tibetans were chronically exposed to the highest MeHg from other sources. Our findings highlight the importance of farmed fish and food trade for MeHg exposure.
PubMed ID: 30114623
MeSH Terms: Animals; China; Commerce; Environmental Monitoring; Environmental Pollutants/analysis; Fisheries*; Fishes; Food Contamination/analysis*; Humans; Methylmercury Compounds/analysis*; Oryza; Seafood