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J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol. 2007 Jan;17(1):25-30. Epub 2006 Aug 16.

Toenail mercury and dietary fish consumption.

Author information

1
Dartmouth College Center for Environmental Health Sciences, Department of Community and Family Medicine (Biostatistics and Epidemiology) and Norris Cotton Cancer Center, Lebanon, New Hampshire 03756, USA. Judith.R.Rees@dartmouth.edu

Abstract

New England is one of three areas in the United States with the highest annual deposition of mercury, an established environmental pollutant with a variety of health effects. We measured the mercury content in toenails of 27 individuals in New Hampshire who participated as controls in a health study in 1994-95. The mean total toenail mercury concentration was 0.27 mcg/g (median 0.16; SD 0.27; range 0.04-1.15 mcg/g). The best predictor of toenail mercury levels was the mean combined fish and shellfish consumption measured using four simple questions from a validated food frequency questionnaire. Toenail total mercury content was significantly correlated with the mean average weekly consumption of finfish and shellfish (Spearman correlation coefficient 0.48, P=0.012). Multivariate models confirmed that toenail total mercury concentration was best predicted by total finfish and shellfish consumption.

PMID:
16912698
DOI:
10.1038/sj.jes.7500516
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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