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Risk assessment regarding heavy metals in tea is crucial to ensure the health of tea customers. However, the effects of geological difference on distribution of heavy metals in soils and their accumulation in tea leaves remain unclear. This study aimed to estimate the impacts of geological difference on distribution of cadmium (Cd), lead (Pb), thallium (Tl), mercury (Hg), arsenic (As), antimony (Sb), chromium (Cr), nickel (Ni), and manganese (Mn) in soils and their accumulation in tea leaves, and further evaluate their health risks. 22 soils and corresponding young tea leaves (YTL) and old tea leaves (OTL), from geologically different plantations, were sampled and analyzed. Results showed that heavy metals concentrations in soils, derived from Permian limestone and Cambrian weakly mineralized dolomite, were obviously greater than those from Silurian clastic rock. The geological difference controlled the distribution of soil heavy metals to a large extent. Contents of Cd, Tl, and Mn in tea leaves mainly depended on their contents in soils. Soil Hg, Pb, As, and Sb contents may not be the only influencing factors for their respective accumulation in tea leaves. More attentions should be paid to soil acidification of tea plantations to ensure the tea quality security. Target hazard quotients (THQ) of Cd, Pb, Tl, Hg, As, Sb, Cr, and Ni and hazard index (HI) via tea intake were below one, indicating no human health risk. The non-mineralized Silurian area was less at risk of heavy metals accumulation in tea leaves than the Cambrian metallogenic belt and the Permian Cd-enriched zone. This study could provide an important basis to understand and mitigate the potential risks of heavy metals in tea.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Ecotoxicology and environmental safety
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Metals with high specific gravity, typically larger than 5. They have complex spectra, form colored salts and double salts, have a low electrode potential, are mainly amphoteric, yield weak bases and weak acids, and are oxidizing or reducing agents (From Grant & Hackh's Chemical Dictionary, 5th ed)
A species of Bacillus that occurs in soil and marine sediments. Many strains are alkalophilic and able to metabolize HEAVY METALS; it may therefore be a useful species for ENVIRONMENTAL BIODEGRADATION.
Deposits of ADIPOSE TISSUE throughout the body. The pattern of fat deposits in the body regions is an indicator of health status. Excess ABDOMINAL FAT increases health risks more than excess fat around the hips or thighs, therefore, WAIST-HIP RATIO is often used to determine health risks.
Accumulation of a drug or chemical substance in various organs (including those not relevant to its pharmacologic or therapeutic action). This distribution depends on the blood flow or perfusion rate of the organ, the ability of the drug to penetrate organ membranes, tissue specificity, protein binding. The distribution is usually expressed as tissue to plasma ratios.
Conditions associated with damage or dysfunction of the nervous system caused by exposure to heavy metals, which may cause a variety of central, peripheral, or autonomic nervous system injuries.