Accumulation of Microcystins in Fish and Evaluation of Potential Human Health Risks: A Case Study on a Eutrophic Reservoir in Korea

마이크로시스틴의 어류내 축적성 및 인체 위해성 평가: 국내 저수지 사례연구

Yoon, Hyojung;Seo, Jungkwan;Kim, Taksoo;Jo, Areum;Kim, Jungkon;Lee, Doohee;Kim, Pilje;Choi, Kyunghee

  • Received : 2015.10.25
  • Accepted : 2016.02.01
  • Published : 2016.02.29


Objectives: Microcystin (MC) produced during cyanobacterial blooms is a worldwide problem presenting a serious health threats to humans and ecosystems. During July through October of 2013, the Ilwol Reservoir experienced a high biomass of phytoplankton (maximum $211.7mg/m^3$ of Chlorophyll-a) containing the toxigenic cyanobacterium Oscillatoria sp. The aim of this study is to analyze MC concentration in the reservoir water, as well as in representative fish species (Carassius cuvieri, Carassius auratus, Channa argus). We also evaluated the human health risk of exposure to MCs accumulated in the fish. Methods: Concentrations of MCs in the water and fish samples were analyzed by liquid chromatography with a triple quadrupole tandem mass spectrometer (LC/MS/MS) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Results: The total levels of four MC variants, including MC-LR, MC-RR, MC-YR and MC-LA were below the WHO drinking water guideline limit (1 ug MC-LR per liter) both for the dissolved and particulate fraction present in the water samples. The mean MC concentrations in the livers of all species were significantly higher than in the gills (p < 0.01) and muscles (p < 0.05). The values of estimated daily intake of MCs in muscles, the edible part of the fish, would be only $0.005-0.015{\mu}g/kg{\cdot}day$, much lower than WHO's provisional tolerable daily intake of $0.04{\mu}g/kg{\cdot}day$. Conclusion: This study suggests that, owing to the spatial distribution or temporal variation of MC, there is a need for careful monitoring of cyanotoxin in reservoir water and aquatic animals to protect public health.


Accumulation;cyanobacterial bloom;health risks;microcystin


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