Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 24, Issue 30, pp 23498–23507 | Cite as

Urinary arsenic, cadmium, manganese, nickel, and vanadium levels of schoolchildren in the vicinity of the industrialised area of Asaluyeh, Iran

  • Raheleh Kafaei
  • Rahim Tahmasbi
  • Masomeh Ravanipour
  • Dariush Ranjbar Vakilabadi
  • Mehdi Ahmadi
  • Abdolmajid Omrani
  • Bahman Ramavandi
Research Article


Asaluyeh is one of the most heavily industrialised areas in the world where gas, petrochemical, and many downstream industries are located. This study aims to survey the biomonitoring of four metals and one metalloid in children living in the vicinity of Asaluyeh area. To do this, we analysed the creatinine-adjusted urinary levels of arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), vanadium (V), manganese (Mn), and nickel (Ni) in 184 elementary schoolchildren (99 boys and 85 girls) living in Asaluyeh and compared them with a reference population. The comparisons were done for two seasons (spring and fall). The results showed that in the case area (Asaluyeh), the levels of As, V, Mn, and Ni were significantly higher and that of Cd was not significantly higher than the reference city for both seasons. The mean concentration of metal(loid)s in Asaluyeh (case) and Sadabad (reference) area as μg g−1 creatinine was As 2.90 and 2.24, V 0.06 and 0.03, Mn 0.28 and 0.25, Ni 0.54 and 0.29, and Cd 0.31 and 0.28 in spring and As 3.08 and 2.28, V 0.07 and 0.03, Mn 0.30 and 0.26, Ni 0.91 and 0.30, and Cd 0.36 and 0.31 in the fall. Seasonal variations played a key role in determining urinary metal(loid) concentration, as we saw the significant level of As, Cd, V, and Ni in fall than in spring. With regard to the impact of gender on the absorption and accumulation of urinary metal(loid)s, boys showed higher levels of the studied elements, especially for As, than girls as outdoor activities are more popular among boys. Due to the values being lower than those reported in literature, more research is needed on various population groups and other exposure sources in order to judge whether living in the vicinity of the gas and petrochemical industries in Asaluyeh is a threat to nearby residents.


Asaluyeh area Schoolchildren Environmental pollution Urinary metals and metalloid Gas and petrochemical industry Human biomonitoring 



The present paper was extracted from MSc. thesis of R. Kafaei, a student of Bushehr University of Medical Sciences (BPUMS); the financial support from BPUMS (Grant no. 1392-H-114) to conduct this work is appreciated. The kind collaboration of the schoolchildren’s parents and school staff of Asaluyeh and Sadabad, Iran, is gratefully acknowledged.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interests

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interests.

Statement of ethical approval

The study was conducted in accordance with the Ethical Principles for Medical Research Involving Human Subjects and was affirmed by Bushehr University of Medical Sciences (ethic code: IR.BPUMS.REC.1395.12).

Supplementary material

11356_2017_9981_MOESM1_ESM.docx (16 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 16 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Environmental Health Engineering, Faculty of Health and NutritionBushehr University of Medical SciencesBushehrIran
  2. 2.Department of Biostatistics, Faculty of Health and NutritionBushehr University of Medical SciencesBushehrIran
  3. 3.Environmental Technologies Research CenterAhvaz Jundishapur University of Medical SciencesAhvazIran
  4. 4.Department of Environmental Health EngineeringAhvaz Jundishapur University of Medical SciencesAhvazIran
  5. 5.Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of MedicineBushehr University of Medical SciencesBushehrIran

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