Selenium Content and/or T-2 Toxin Contamination of Cereals, Soil, and Children’s Hair in Some Areas of Heilongjiang and Gansu Provinces, China

  • Liyan Sun
  • Silu Cui
  • Qing Deng
  • Hui Liu
  • Yanhong Cao
  • Shaoping Wang
  • Jun YuEmail author


It has been strongly suggested that selenium deficiency and T-2 contamination in cereals are responsible for the development of Kashin-Beck disease (KBD). In order to assess these risk factors of KBD in the internal and external environments, our team undertook a two-stage survey in some areas of Heilongjiang and Gansu Provinces, China. The selenium content in children’s hair (293), cereal (192), and soil (46) samples were determined using the 2, 3-diamino-naphthalene fluorometric assay technique. The T-2 toxin contamination level in the cereal samples (704) was assayed using an ELISA kit. There were no clinical KBD cases identified in this survey. The selenium statuses of the children in all the investigated regions during the first phase were at the medium selenium nutrition level. During the second phase, the selenium status of the children in Weiyuan County, Ning County, and Shangzhi City was at the medium selenium nutrition level, at the edge of selenium deficiency, and selenium deficient, respectively. Furthermore, the selenium contents in the cereal and soil samples were low. During the first phase, the average T-2 toxin contamination level in the family staple food samples for all the investigated regions was about 10 ng/g. However, the T-2 toxin contamination levels in eight homegrown corn samples were higher than 100 ng/g. During the second phase, all the average T-2 toxin contamination levels in the flour and corn samples from the three investigated regions were less than 10 ng/g. Risk factors that affect the prevalence of KBD still remain in the internal and external environments of some areas in Heilongjiang and Gansu Provinces.


Selenium T-2 toxin Kashin-Beck disease Cereal Soil Hair 



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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Liyan Sun
    • 1
    • 2
  • Silu Cui
    • 1
    • 2
  • Qing Deng
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hui Liu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yanhong Cao
    • 1
    • 2
  • Shaoping Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jun Yu
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Center for Endemic Disease Control, Chinese Center for Disease Control and PreventionHarbin Medical UniversityHarbinChina
  2. 2.Heilongjiang Provincial Key Laboratory of Trace Elements and Human HealthKey Lab of Etiology and Epidemiology, Education Bureau of Heilongjiang Province & National Health Commission of the People’s Republic of China (23618504)HarbinChina

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