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Potentially Toxic Elements Concentrations And Human Health Risk Assessment Of Food Crops In Bajaur Agency, Pakistan

Zia Ullah, Alia Naz, Umar Saddique, Abdullah Aman Khan, Wisal Shah, Said Muhammad
Published 2017 · Geology
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This study investigates the potentially toxic elements (PTEs) concentrations in various food crops along the Bajaur Agency. For this purpose, food crop samples were collected and analyzed for PTEs including cadmium (Cd), nickel (Ni), chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), cobalt (Co), zinc (Zn) and lead (Pb) by atomic absorption spectrometer (PerkinElmer, AAS-PEA-700). Among the food crops, Spinacia oleracea L. showed the highest concentrations for Ni, Cr, Cu, Co and Pb, Brassica juncea (L.) Czern. for Cd, and Zea mays L. for Pb. The concentrations of the Cd, Cr and Ni in food crops have surpassed the safe limits set by Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization. Determined PTEs concentrations in food crops were evaluated for the risk assessment through single and collectively PTEs and food crop using the daily intake of metals (DIM) and hazard quotient (HQ). Results revealed that through food crops intake the highest values of DIM and HQ were observed for Zn and Cd, respectively. Children showed the highest HQ values, compared to adults for Triticum aestivum L. consumption. High HQ values can cause hazardous health problem in exposed populations; therefore, this study recommends regular monitoring of PTEs concentrations in food crops.
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