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The PAH composition in limpets (Patella vulgate L.) from the coasts of Sicily (Italy)


This article examines the presence, distribution, nature and sources of 19 Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH), in Patellae (patella vulgate L.) and seaweed (vulva) sampled in different stations of Sicilian coastal environments and analyzed for their polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) content. Analysis was performed by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) with selected ion monitoring (SIM), after saponification of the sample and clean up of the extract. In the limpets the total concentration of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons ranged from 34 to 750 μg/Kg of dry matrix. The relative standard deviation (RSD) of the replicas on the concentrations of individual compounds ranged from 4 to 20%. The accuracy of method was estimated by analyzing "blank" samples spiked with known quantities of analytes and the recover percentage was 82 ± 12%. The detection limit (LOD) of analytical procedure was less than 0.2 μg/Kg d.w. for all analytes. The quantification limit (LOQ) of analytical procedure was less 0.7 μg/Kg d.w. The resulting distributions and weight ratios of specific compounds are discussed in terms of sampling location and origin. The results obtained show that levels of contamination vary from one sampling station to the next, while relative distributions of PAH is homogeneous in most stations. Lipidic content and total PAH concentrations were found not to be correlated and the compounds present in limpets were shown to be mainly of petrogenic origin. There is no evidence of coal-tar contamination. Copyright © 2006 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.