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As, Cd and Pb levels in breast milk of volunteer mothers in Baguio City, Philippines


Marilou M. Saong,
Riza A. Magbitang,
Irene B. Rodriguez

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University of Baguio Research Journal
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Breast milk is the primary source of nutrition for infants and the practice of breastfeeding is highly promoted all over the world. But this important source of nutrients may also be the pathway of exposure of infants to unwanted contaminants like arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) due to maternal excretion. Analyses of the trace contaminants in the breast milk samples from volunteer mothers in Baguio City, Philippines was done using an optimized method based on microwave digestion as mineralization step prior to metal-selective detection by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICPMS). The method was validated against a certified reference material (spiked skim milk powder) and by standard addition. The breast milk samples analyzed showed a range of concentration for As: from below method detection limit (MDL) to 12.02 ?g L^-1 (mean value of 3.04 ?g L^-1); for Cd: from below MDL to 0.70 ?g L^-1 (mean value of 0.11 ?g L^-1); and for Pb: from below MDL to 20.04 ?g L^-1 (mean value of1.93 ?g L-1). These concentrations, except the determined As values, were below the reported values in other in countries and the reported values by the World Health Organization.

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