Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 26, Issue 9, pp 9232–9243 | Cite as

Seasonal variation in metal concentration in various tissues of the European chub (Squalius cephalus L.)

  • Karolina SunjogEmail author
  • Stoimir Kolarević
  • Margareta Kračun-Kolarević
  • Željka Višnjić-Jeftić
  • Zoran Gačić
  • Mirjana Lenhardt
  • Branka Vuković-Gačić
Research Article


Due to the increasing industrialization, metals are discharged into all spheres of the environment, in particular, in river courses, which leads to the need for constant monitoring. Metals do not degrade into harmless end products; they are very persistent and have high potential for accumulation in biota. Metals in the fish body are accumulated in different amounts in the tissue specific matter. In relation to the biotic conditions and fish metabolism, the load of food, or the stage of the reproductive cycle, the seasonal variation of metal levels can be expected. Because of that, the objective of our present study was to analyze 15 metals and metalloids in liver, gills, muscle, and gonads of European chub (Squalius cephalus) throughout the 4 seasons, autumn, winter, spring, and summer. The specimens were collected from two rivers, Pestan and Beljanica at the Kolubara basin, and their concentrations were determined with inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES). Specimens from both rivers have shown similarities in metal accumulation like the highest accumulation of majority of elements in gills, lowest accumulation of majority of elements in muscle (except for Hg), and higher accumulation of some elements in summer (Cu, Fe, Zn). In addition, Cu and Fe showed affinity for liver, while Ba, Cr, Sr, and Zn were specific for gills. Also, Al, B, Fe, Ni, and Pb did not show significant differences in concentrations among different seasons in all investigated tissues.


ICP-OES European chub Metals Seasonal variation Freshwater Fish tissues 



This study represents a part of activities within the Project No. 173045, funded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia. Information regarding the quality of water based on chemical analyses was obtained from the Republic Hydrometeorological Service of Serbia. The authors would like to thank Luka Gačić who provided English language improvement.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that there is no conflict of interests regarding the publication of this paper.

Supplementary material

11356_2019_4274_MOESM1_ESM.doc (60 kb)
ESM 1 (DOC 60 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karolina Sunjog
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Stoimir Kolarević
    • 2
  • Margareta Kračun-Kolarević
    • 3
  • Željka Višnjić-Jeftić
    • 1
  • Zoran Gačić
    • 1
  • Mirjana Lenhardt
    • 1
    • 3
  • Branka Vuković-Gačić
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute for Multidisciplinary Research, Department of Biology and Inland Waters ProtectionUniversity of BelgradeBelgradeSerbia
  2. 2.Faculty of Biology, Chair of Microbiology, Center for Genotoxicology and EcogenotoxicologyUniversity of BelgradeBelgradeSerbia
  3. 3.Institute for Biological Research “Siniša Stanković”University of BelgradeBelgradeSerbia

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