Virtual Conference

Hana Youssef Learoussy

Nouakchott University, Mauritania

Title: Assessment of the potential health risks associated with six trace elements in halieutic products from the Mauritanian Atlantic coast


Halieutic products are consumed widely and literature showed that they may be a major source of human exposure to various environmental contaminants such as trace elements. Mauritanian Atlantic coast is an importing fishing area, our study focused on the determination of six trace elements (Cd; Hg; Pb; Cu; Fe and Zn) in the muscle of most consumed and worldwide-commercialized halieutic products (Sardinella aurita; Sardinella maderensis; Trachurus trachurus; Dentex angolensis; Mugil cephalus and Octopus vulgaris). Samples were collected from two sites with important anthropogenic activities (Nouakchott and Nouadhibou coast). The presence of cadmium, lead, copper, iron and zinc was proceeded using ICP-OES technique, while the determination of mercury was carried out with a Direct Mercury Analyzer. Results showed that lead was not detected in samples from Nouakchott coast; however, it was detected in two from five samples of O. vulgaris species collected from the Nouadhibou coast. Cd; Hg and Pb concentrations in all species were under the maximum residue level fixed by the European Commission regulation.


The highest mean content of cadmium was detected in O. vulgaris and for mercury in S. maderensis. The highest mean value of copper was obtained with M. cephalus whereas the highest of iron and zinc were found with S. aurita and T. trachurus respectively. To evaluate the potential health risks linked to the consumption of the studied species; the Target Hazard Quotient (THQ) and the Hazard Index (HI) were used. Results showed that S. aurita; S. maderensis; T. trachurus and D. angolensis have THQ and HI values that are under the tolerated limit. Results of the current study indicate that the examined halieutic product have accepted concentrations of non-essential trace elements. As regards the estimation of potential health risks, calculation showed no risk related to the consumption of the studied species for children and adults