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A systematic review and meta-analysis of lead and cadmium concentrations in cow milk in Iran and human health risk assessment

Abstract

The aim of the current research was to systematically review and summarize the studies that evaluated the concentration of lead (Pb) and cadmium (Cd) in cow milk in different regions of Iran and to perform a meta-analysis of the findings. Moreover, the non-carcinogenic and carcinogenic risks of Pb and Cd through milk consumption in adult and child consumers were assessed. As a result of a systematic search in the international and national databases between January 2008 and October 2018, 17 reports involving 1874 samples were incorporated in our study for meta-analysis. The pooled concentrations of Pb and Cd were estimated to be 13.95 μg mL−1 (95% CI 9.72–18.11 μg mL−1) and 3.55 μg mL−1 (95% CI − 2.38–9.48 μg mL−1), respectively, which were lower than the WHO/FAO and national standard limits. The estimated weekly intake (EWI) of Pb and Cd through consuming milk was 16.65 and 7 μg day−1 for adults of 70 kg and 45 and 34 μg day−1 for children of 26 kg, respectively, which was well below the risk values set by Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA). The maximum target hazard quotient values (THQs) of Pb and Cd were 5.55E−5 and 5.55E−5 for adults and 5.55E−5 and 5.55E−5 for children, respectively, which were lower than 1 value, suggesting that Iranian consumers are not exposed to non-carcinogenic risk through consuming milk. Moreover, the incremental lifetime cancer risk (ILCR) of Pb estimated to be 2.96E−04 in adults and 1.0E−03 in children, indicating that consumers in Iran are at threshold carcinogenic risk of Pb through consuming milk (ILCR > 10−4). Therefore, planning and policy making for the sustainable reduction of these toxic metals in milk, particularly in industrial regions of Iran, are crucial.

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Funding

The study is financially supported by student research committee, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences (code 1398/20816).

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Correspondence to Fatemeh Mohammadi-Nasrabadi or Hedayat Hoseini.

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Abedi, A., Nasseri, E., Esfarjani, F. et al. A systematic review and meta-analysis of lead and cadmium concentrations in cow milk in Iran and human health risk assessment. Environ Sci Pollut Res (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-07989-w

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Keywords

  • Cadmium
  • Carcinogenic risk
  • Cow’s milk
  • Iran
  • Lead
  • Non-carcinogenic risk