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A review of environmental and health effects of organochlorine pesticide residues in Africa

Taiwo, Adewale Matthew
Chemosphere 2019 v.220 pp. 1126-1140
adverse effects, air, benzene, blood serum, cyclohexanes, fish, fish consumption, foods, health effects assessments, neoplasms, organochlorine pesticides, pesticide residues, risk, sediments, soil, surface water, Nigeria
Organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) are generally categorized as chlorinated cyclodienes, chlorodiphenylethanes, chlorinated benzenes and cyclohexanes. The presence of OCP residues in foodstuffs, water, soil, sediments, blood serum and air has generated a surge of global interest. This is due to their severe environmental and health ill-effects. OCPs are characteristically described as persistent and bio-accumulating substances prone to long-range transportation. The aim of this present study is to assess the environmental and health risks associated with OCP residues. Published works on OCPs in surface water, sediments and fish samples were reviewed. Possible non-carcinogenic (Hazard Quotient, HQ and Hazard Index, HI) and carcinogenic (Cancer Risk, CR) health effects of OCPs were assessed in fish samples. High concentrations of OCP residues were determined in environmental samples from African countries. The non-carcinogenic health assessment of OCPs in most fish samples from Nigeria revealed HI values greater than 1.0 establishing their adverse effects. The CR data of OCPs in fish samples also showed values higher than the permissible standard of 1.0 × 10−4 indicating possible development of cancer through fish consumption.