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Received April 08, 1991,Revised , Accepted , Available online

Volume 4,1992,Pages 32-38

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Metallothionein (MT) has a great capacity of binding heavy metals showing an interesting connection with metal toxicology, as a biochemical marker for environmental metal pollution. Anino-exchange high per formance liquid chromatography (HPLC) was used to isolate and quantitate MT in livers of minks which were contaminated with heavy metals. MT isoforms (MT-I and MT-II) were eluted at approximately 11.3 and 14.3 min respectively from a DEAE-5 PW anion-exchange column with a Tris-HCl buffer (0.01 -0.25 mol/L, pH 8.6) and detected by UV absorbance at 254 nm. The cadmium concentrations in mink liver MT elutkms were determined by graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry (GFAAS) . Obvious increase in liver MT-I concentration rather than liver MT-II was found when the minks were contaminated by feeding contaminated fish captured from the heavy metal-polluted river. The cadmium concentration in mink liver MT-I also increased to some extent as the contaminated level increased.

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