Distribution of trace elements in tissues of two shrimp species from the Persian Gulf and roles of metallothionein in their redistribution.Environ Int. 2005 Apr; 31(3):325-41.EI
This study investigates the distribution of three trace elements (Cd, Cu and Zn) in tissues (exoskeleton, abdominal muscle and hepatopancreas) of two shrimp species (Penaeus merguiensis and Penaeus semisulcatus). Special emphasis in this study was placed on evaluating the effects of storage conditions on redistribution of the elements and moreover the potential roles of metallothionein in tissue redistribution. The specimens were collected from the northern part of Persian Gulf during September 2001 and January 2002. The concentrations of metals in the tissues were measured using an Inductively Coupled Plasma-Atomic Emission Spectrophotometer (ICP-AES) and an ICP-Mass Spectrometer (ICP-MS). Metallothionein levels were determined using Differential pulse polarography. Results show a similar hierarchy for Cd and Cu concentrations among different tissues as follows: hepatopancreas>exoskeleton>muscle; and for Zn, the hepatopancreas again contained the highest levels, though there were not any significant differences in Zn concentrations between muscle and exoskeleton. Significant differences were found between the species in the case of Cd and Zn concentrations. Cd and Zn levels in P. semisulcatus were markedly higher than in P. merguiensis. In general, there were highly significant differences among the storage conditions from accumulation the selected trace elements and metallothionein in both species point of view, but in most cases, no significant differences could be observed among the fresh, refrigerated and frozen specimens of P. semisulcatus. In regards to Zn and Cu accumulation in edible (muscle) tissues of P. merguiensis, optimum conditions for frozen storage is -30 degrees C as ice-frozen, and in terms of short-term storage, 1-day refrigeration is recommended. The redistribution of Zn and Cu during the storage period can be attributed to the role of metallothionein in their transport from organ(s) to muscle during storage. The variations in pH values measured in the muscle of P. merguiensis in different storage conditions showed a similar trend with metallothionein, Zn and Cu. In contrast, it appears that cadmium is transported from muscle to the other tissues. Exoskeleton is probably one of the recipient tissues of cadmium. The inter-elemental relationships were assessed for each species, separately. A significant positive relationship was observed between the concentrations of Zn and metallothionein in P. semisulcatus, whereas in P. merguiensis, Cd concentrations decreased significantly with increasing metallothionein. Highly significant differences between the sexes in Cu and Zn contents could be detected. The differences between the sexes in the levels of Zn and Cu were significantly greater in P. semisulcatus. Highly significant size-related differences were found in the levels of Cd, Cu and metallothionein in the selected tissues of the shrimp species. Comparison between the mean concentrations of the elements in muscle tissue and existing guidelines indicate that in nearly all cases, the concentrations were well below permissible levels for human consumption. The only exception was observed regarding mean values of Cd, which was somewhat greater than some of the recommended levels.