Document Type: Review Article


1 Department of Fishery, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Gorgan 49138–15739, Iran

2 Zabol Medicinal Plants Research Center, Zabol University of Medical Sciences, Zabol, Iran

3 Department of Range and Watershed Management, Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Zabol, Iran


The heavy metals concentrations including Zinc, Copper, Lead and Cadmium (Zn, Cu, Pb and Cd) in water and sediments in Gorgan Bay and their accumulation in Rutilus frisii kutum, Acipenser persicus, Rutilus rutilus caspicus and Cyprinus carpio organs (gills, muscle, kidney and liver) were investigated. There was substantial increase in concentration of heavy metals ingoing from the water to the sediment samples. In water and sediments, The concentration of heavy metal was in the order Pb > Cd > Zn > Cu. Fish sampleswere collected from Gorgan bay and analyzed for heavy metal content of liver, muscle, kidney and gills tissues. The maximum and minimum of heavy metals concentration were recorded in liver and muscle, respectively. The order of heavy metals concentration in different organs of fish samples was liver > gills > kidney > muscle and the order of heavy metals level in muscle, gills, kidney and liver was Pb>Cd>Zn>Cu. According to the results, heavy metal concentrations in fish species tissues were well within the limits set by the FAO/WHO recommendations and showed that the fish from investigated region are safety for consumers.


Adeniyi, A.A., Yusu, K.A and Okedeji, O.O. (2008). Assessment of the exposure of two fishes to metal pollution in Ogun river catchments, Ketu, Lagos, Nigeria. J. Environ. Asses. Monit, 137: 451ñ458.
Agusa, T., Kunito A., Sudaryanto, T., Monirith S. K., Klap, A and Iwata, H. (2007). Exposure assessment for trace elements from consumption of marine fish in Southeast Asia. Environ Pollut, 145: 266ñ777.
Agusa, T., Kunito, T., Yasunaga, G., Iwata H., Subramanian A., Ismail, A and Tanabe, S. (2005).
Concentrations of trace elements in marine fish and its risk assessment in Malaysia. Marine Poll Bull, 51: 896ñ911.
Allen, P. (1995). Accumulation profiles of lead and cadmium in the edible tissues of Oreochromis aureus during acute exposure. J. Fish Biol, 47(4): 559-568.
Allinson, G. Nishikawa, M., De Silva, S.S, Laurenson, L.J.B and De. Silva, K. (2002). Observations on metal concentration in tilapia (Oreochromis mossambicus) in reservoirs of South Sri Lanka. Ecotox. Environ. Safe, 51: 197-202.
Al-Mohanna, M.M. (1994). Residues of some heavy metals in fishes collected from (Red Sea Coast) Jisan, Saudi Arabia, J. Environ. Biol, 15:149ñ157.
Anil, K.A and Pathiratne, A. (2002). Accumulation of lead, cadmium and copper in food fish, Oreochromis mossambicus from Bolgoda Lagoon and Beira Lake, Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka, J. Aquat. Sci, 7:75-83.
APHA (American Public Health Association). (2005). Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater. 17th edition, APHA, AWWA and WPCF, Washington D.C.
Begum, A., HariKrishna S and Khan, I. (2009). Analysis of Heavy metals in Water, Sediments and Fish samples of Madivala Lakes of Bangalore, Karnataka. Int. J. Chem.Tech. Res, 1(2): 245-249.
Chapman, D. (1992). Water Quality Assessment. A quide to use of biota, sediments and water in environmental monitoring. Chapman and Hall Publishing, Cambridge.
Dalman, O., Dernirah, A and Balci, A. (2006). Determination of heavy metals (Cd, Pb) and trace elements (Cu, Zn) in sediments and fish of the southeastern Aegean sea (Turkey) by Atomic Absorption Spectrometry, Food Chem, 95: 157-162.
FAO/WHO. (1984). List of maximum levels recommended for contaminants by the Joint FAO/ WHO Codex Alimentarius Commission, Second Series. CAC/FAL, Rome 3: 1ñ8. Food and drugs.
KualaLumpur, Malaysia Law Publisher.
Forstner, U and Wittmann, G.T.W. (1983). Metal pollution in aquatic environment. Berlin, SpringerVerlag., pp: 30-61.
Ganjidoust, H. (2001). Hazardous Waste Management: Policies and Practices in Asian Countries. Asian Production Organization, Tokyo, pp: 124-154.
Giguere, A., Campbell, P.G.C., Hare, L., McDonald, D.G and Rasmussen, J.B. (2004). Influence of lake chemistry and fish age on cadmium, copper, and zinc concentrations in various organs of indigenous yellow perch (Perca flavescens). Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 61:1702ñ1716.
Grieb, T.M., Driscoll, C.T., Gloss, S.P., Schofield, C.L., Bowie, G.L and Porcella D.B. (1990). Factors affecting mercury accumulation in fish in the upper Michigan Peninsula. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 9:919ñ30.
Haines, T.A and Brumbaugh, W.G. (1994). Metal concentration in the gill, gastrointestinal tract, and carcass of white suckers (Catostomus commersoni) in relation to lake acidity. Water, Air Soil Pollut. 73:265ñ274.
Hajeb, P., Jinap, S., Ismail, A., Fatimah, A.B., Jamilah, J and Rahim, M.A. (2009). Assessment of mercury level in commonly consumed marine fishes in Malaysia. Food Control, 20(1): 79ñ84.
Heath, A.G. (1987). Water pollution and Fish physiology. CRC press, Florida, USA, 245 pp.
Horwitz, R.J., Ruppel, B., Wisniewski, S., Kiry, P., Hermanson, M and Gilmour, C. (1995). Mercury concentrations in freshwater fishes in New Jersey. Water Air Soil Pollut. 80:885ñ888.
Ibrahim, A.M., Bahnasawy, M.H., Mansy, S.E and El-Fayomy, R.I. (2000). On some heavy metal levels in water, sediment and marine organisms from the Mediterranean coast of Lake Manzalah. Egypt. J. Aqua. Biol. & Fish, 4 (4): 61-81.
Ibrahim, N.A and El-Naggar, G.O. (2006). Assessment of heavy metals levels in water, sediment and fish at cage fish culture at Damietta Branch of the river Nile. J. Egypt. Acad. Environ. Develop, 7 (1): 93-1114.
Indrajith, H.A.P, Pathiratne, K.A.S and Pathiratne, A. (2006). Heavy metal levels in two species of food fish, Etroplus suratensis and Ambassis commersoni inhabiting Negombo lagoon, Sri Lanka. Proceedings
of the 62nd annual sessions of the Sri LankaAssociation for the Advancement of Science Part I, abstracts,84.
Jezierska, B and Witeska, M. (2006). The metal uptake and accumulation in fish living in polluted waters,
Twardowska et al. (eds.), soil and Water Pollution Monitoring, Protection and Remediation, 3ñ23.
Jezierska, B and Witeska, M. (2001). Metal Toxicity to Fish, Wydawnictwo Akademii Podlaskiej, Siedlce 318 pp.
Kidwell, J.M., Phillips, L.J and Birchard, G.F. (1995). Comparative analyses of contaminant levels in bottom feeding and predatory fish using the national contaminant biomonitoring program data. Bull. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 54:919ñ923.
Kiyani, V., Hosynzadeh, M and Ebrahimpour, M. (2013). Investigation acute toxicity some of heavy metals at different water hardness, International journal of Advanced Biological and Biomedical
Research, 1(2): 134-142.
Kock, G., Triendl, M and Hofer, R. (1996). Seasonal patterns of metal accumulation in Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) from an oligotrophic Alpine lake related to temperature. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 53:780ñ786.
Linde, A.R., Arribas, P., Sanchez-Galan, S and Garcia-Vazquez, E. (1996). Eel (Anguilla anguilla) and brown trout (Salmo trutta) target species to assess the biological impact of trace metal pollution in freshwater ecosystems. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 31:297ñ302.
Manage, P.M and Wijethilaka S.D. (2006). Accumulation pattern of some selected heavy metals in some edible fish species from Bolgoda lagoon. Proceedings of the 62nd annual sessions of the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science Part I, abstracts 83.
Marcovecchio, J.E. (2004). The use of Micropogonias furnieri and Mugil 1iza as bioindicators of heavy metal pollution in La Plata river estuary, Argentina. Sci. Total Environ, 323:2 I 9-226.
Marzouk, M. (1994). Fish and environment pollution. Vet. Med. J, 42: 51ñ52.
Moiseenko, T.I., Kudryavtseva, L.P., Rodyushkin, I.V., Dauvalter, V.A., Lukin, A.A and Kashulin, N.A. (1995). Airborne contamination by heavy metals and aluminum in the freshwater ecosystems of Kola subarctic region (Russia), Sci. Total Environ. 160/161:715ñ727.
Ney, J.J and Van Hassel, J.H. (1983). Sources of variability in accumulation of heavy metals by fishes in a roadside stream. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 12:701ñ706.
Peakall, D and Burger, J. (2003). Methodologies for assessing exposure to metals: speciation, bioavailability of metals & ecological host factors. Ecotoxic. Environ. Safe, 56: 110-121.
Silva, E.I.L and Shimizu, A. (2004). Concentration of trace metals in the flesh of nine fish species found in a Hydropower reservoir in Sri Lanka. Asian Fisheries Sci, 17:377-384.
UNEP . (1984). Determination of total cadmium, zinc, lead and copper in selected marine organisms by flameless atomic absorption spectrophotometry, Reference Methods for Marine Pollution Studies No. 11 Rev 1.
Varola, M and ™en, B. (2012). Assessment of nutrient and heavy metal contamination in surface water and sediments of the upper Tigris River, Turkey. CATENA, 92: 1ñ10.
Wiener, J.G., Martini, R.E., Sheffy, T.B and Glass, G.E. (1990). Factors influencing mercury concentrations in walleyes in northern Wisconsin lakes. Trans. Am. Fish Soc. 119:862ñ870.
Wijesinghe, M.R, Jayathunga, Y.N.A and Hewamanna, R. (1999). Bio-accumulation of heavy metals in Oreochromis mossambicus. Proceedings of the 52nd annual sessions of the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Sciences, Part I, abstracts, 153-154.
Witharana, W.A.U., Bandara, N.1.G.J and Piyasiri, S. (2005). Investigation of heavy metals in edible fish species in a section of Bellanwila-Attidiya canal. Proceedings of the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Sciences, 61nd annual sessions, Part I, abstracts 43.
Yamazaki, M., Tanizaki, Y and Shimokawa, T. (1996). Silver and other trace elements in a freshwater fish, Carasius auratus langsdorfii, from the Asakawa River in Tokyo, Japan. Environ. Pollut. 94:83ñ90.