Distribution of Heavy Metals in Organs of Sheep and Goat Reared in Obuasi: A Gold Mining Town in Ghana

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International Journal of Environmental Science and Toxicology
The aim of this study was to determine the concentration of metals in some organs of goat and sheep and assess the distribution of these metals in the sample tissues. Samples were digested with 60% nitric acid and concentrations of the heavy metals measured using atomic absorption spectrophotometer while the concentrations of Hg were measured with mercury analyzer. Concentrations of Zn, Cu were very high in the organs followed by Cr, Ni, Co, Pb, Cd, As and Hg. Total rank score assessment showed that liver, kidney and lung had accumulated high levels of metals while brain accumulated lowest. Mean Zn concentrations in all organs ranged between 24.88±11.22 in goat brain and 97.06±19.66 mg/kg in liver of goat. Mean Cu concentrations ranged between 7.96±1.20 (small intestine of sheep) and 106.63±111.24 mg/kg in liver of sheep. Cd concentration in liver and kidney in both species were above the EU set limit of 0.05 mg/kg. Concentrations of Co in liver, kidney and lungs of the two different animals did not vary significantly. As and Hg concentration were homogenous in all the organs of both animals and did not show any significant variation. Prolonged consumption of kidney, liver and lungs of goats and sheep having high concentrations of Zn Cu and Cd may lead to accumulation of these metals in humans and cause metal toxicity.
An article published by International Journal of Environmental Science and Toxicology
Goat and sheep, Heavy metals, Mining, Obuasi, Total rank score
International Journal of Environmental Science and Toxicology (ISSN: 2315-9927) Vol. 2(4) pp. 81-89, April, 2014