Seasonal variations of PCDD/Fs in fishes: inferring a hidden exposure route from Na-PCP application for schistosomiasis control

  • Yuming Hu
  • Chuanzhu Yi
  • Jingguang Li
  • Xiaohong Shang
  • Zimin Li
  • Xiaochen Yin
  • Bo Chen
  • Yuechan Zhou
  • Yinyin Zhang
  • Yongning Wu


Japanese schistosomiasis was endemic in Dongting Lake, the second largest freshwater lake in China. The technical sodium pentachlorophenate (Na-PCP) was widely used during the period between the early 1960s and early 1990s to kill oncomelania, the intermediate host of Schistosomes. However, polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs) and polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDFs) also contaminated the environment of Dongting Lake due to trace impurities of Na-PCP. In this study, 13 species of freshwater fish were collected from Dongting Lake and analyzed in wet and dry seasons. Temporal (wet and dry season) variations in PCDD/Fs in fishes from Dongting Lake were observed. The concentration of PCDD/Fs was considerably higher in the wet season than in the dry season and in areas in China where Na-PCP was not applied. The higher level of PCDD/Fs in the wet season may be attributed to the use of Na-PCP in the past and to the increase in the migration of PCDD/Fs from sediments to water in the wet season. The results indicate that the risk of PCDD/Fs contamination is connected with prior consumption of fishes that live in the Na-PCP application area. However, there was no difference in the concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) between the wet and dry seasons.


Season variations Polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins Polychlorinated dibenzofurans Fishes Sodium pentachlorophenate Japanese schistosomiasis 



This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (30771812 and 81172675).

Compliance with ethical standards

Competing interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.China National Center for Food Safety Risk AssessmentBeijingChina

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