D. Pipoyan, M. Beglaryan, S. Stepanyan, N. Merendino;                             Biological Trace Element Research,                             2018,                                                         pp. 1-8;                             DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12011-018-1522-8                        
Fruits and vegetables grown under the impact of Armenia’s mining industry are widely sold in markets of adjacent towns. As the share of fruits and vegetables in Armenians’ diet is significant, the present study aims to assess the dietary exposure of potentially toxic trace elements through the intake of fruits and vegetables sold in Kapan town, located in the biggest mining region of Armenia. The concentrations of Cu, Mo, Ni, Cr, Pb, Zn, Hg, As, and Cd in 15 types of fruits and vegetables were determined. Non-carcinogenic and carcinogenic risks were assessed. Although the estimated daily intakes of trace elements for each studied food item did not exceed health-based guidelines values, in case of the combined consumption of fruits and vegetables estimated cumulative daily intakes exceeded reference doses for Cu and Mo. Moreover, carcinogenic risk for the majority of fruits and vegetables exceeded the EPA recommended risk level of 10−6, indicating adverse health effect to local population. The outcomes of this study can serve as a basis for further research that will consider many other exposure pathways (i.e., inhalation or dermal pathways) in order to ensure the safety of the residents living under the impact of mining industry.
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