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Bull Environ Contam Toxicol. 2014 Aug 13. [Epub ahead of print]

Accumulation of Cadmium in and Its Effect on the Midgut Gland of Terrestrial Snail Helix pomatia L. from Urban Areas in Poland.

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  • 1Institute of Biology, University of Białystok, Świerkowa 20B, 15-950, Białystok, Poland, twlostow@uwb.edu.pl.


The objectives of this study were (1) to determine cadmium (Cd) accumulation in the midgut gland of a land snail Helix pomatia L. inhabiting residential areas of the 14 largest cities in Poland, and (2) to examine whether the accumulated Cd exerted any toxic effects. The average accumulation of Cd in the midgut gland of snails, weighing 16-18 g, ranged from 7.00 to 87.3 µg/g dry weight (0.06-0.77 µmol/g) and differed significantly among animals from the various urban areas. This difference in Cd accumulation was not related to city population, but was associated with the topsoil Cd (R2 = 0.868, p < 0.0001). The tissue Cd was not found to produce toxicity (histopathology, programmed cell death, lipofuscin formation or lipid peroxidation), probably due to the induction of sufficiently high quantities of metallothionein and glutathione, well-known protective molecules.

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