QUANTIFYING POTENTIAL HUMAN EXPOSURE TO CYANOTOXINS FROM LETTUCE GROWN WITH CONTAMINATED WATER
The prevalence of harmful algae blooms and their associated cyanotoxins in lakes near urban centers is an increasing global issue that poses an environmental and human health hazard. Exposure to cyanotoxins via consumption can result in acute and chronic neuro- and hepatoxic effects. Microcystin, Nodularin, and B-methylamino-L-alanine are common cyanotoxins that pose a threat to humans who use contaminated water for crop and garden irrigation. Experimental data is lacking on the fate of these toxins in the environment, the capacity for bioaccumulation in food crops, and standard methods for cyanotoxin extraction from soil and plants. To fill these knowledge gaps, we will create an efficient extraction procedure from soil and vegetation and quantify uptake in lettuce crops irrigated with contaminated water. Three environmentally relevant concentrations of cyanotoxins will be applied to lettuce grown in a random block design in a greenhouse. Cyanotoxin concentrations in roots and shoots of lettuce and the accommodating soil medium will be quantified using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent analysis kit. Lettuce bioaccumulation of cyanotoxins exceeding human consumption limits will require advice on safe consumption and irrigation regimes.
Austin Bartos (Primary Presenter/Author), Utah State University, firstname.lastname@example.org;