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Acta Amazonica

Print version ISSN 0044-5967


FARIAS, Luciana A. et al. Mercury and methylmercury concentration assessment in children's hair from Manaus, Amazonas state, Brazil. Acta Amaz. [online]. 2012, vol.42, n.2, pp.279-286. ISSN 0044-5967.

The present study evaluated Hg and MeHg content in hair samples of 201 children 2 to 7 years old, living in six neighborhoods of the city of Manaus, Amazonas State, Brazil. In general, the total Hg and MeHg median ranges in hair were similar (0.91 to 1.71 mg kg-1) except for the São Jose neighborhood, which was lower (0.16 mg kg-1). De spite the fact that the Manaus population consumes fish as part of the normal dietary intake, the Hg hair levels were below the level for an adult population not exposed to mercury (2.0 mg kg-1). These data were compared to demographic, socioeconomic information and eating habits of the families that took part in the study. The results were also compared to other published data from the Amazon region, other regions of Brazil and other countries. Future studies to set Hg and MeHg levels in hair of children in Brazil should take into account and assess the diversity of the country, mainly in terms of eating habits, socio-economic and cultural aspects.

Keywords : mercury; methylmercury; children's hair; Amazon region.

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