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Occurrence of Tetrodotoxin in Bivalves and Gastropods from Harvesting Areas and Other Natural Spaces in Spain

ANFACO-CECOPESCA, Campus University 16, 36310 Vigo PO, Spain
IRTA, Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology. Ctra. Poble Nou km 5.5, 43540 San Carles de la Ràpita, Tarragona, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Toxins 2019, 11(6), 331;
Received: 30 April 2019 / Revised: 5 June 2019 / Accepted: 7 June 2019 / Published: 11 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tetrodotoxins)
PDF [674 KB, uploaded 13 June 2019]


Tetrodotoxin (TTX) is a potent neurotoxin that is receiving increasing interest in the European Union because it has been found in different fishery products (fish, bivalves and gastropods) captured in European waters. Since available information is scarce, further analytical data regarding the incidence of this toxin in European fishery products is needed in order to perform an appropriate risk assessment devoted to protecting consumers’ health. Hence, samples of bivalves and gastropods were collected at different points of the Spanish coast and analyzed by high-performance hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (HILIC-MS/MS) to evaluate the presence of TTX. None of the analyzed samples showed TTX above an internal threshold of 10 µg/kg or even showed a peak under it. Our results on TTX occurrence obtained in bivalve molluscs and gastropods did not show, at least in the studied areas, a risk for public health. However, taking into account previous positive results obtained by other research groups, and since we did not detect TTX in our samples, a more completed study increasing sampling frequency is needed to ensure proper risk evaluation towards the food safety of these products. View Full-Text
Keywords: tetrodotoxin; bivalves; gastropods; risk evaluation; LC-MS/MS tetrodotoxin; bivalves; gastropods; risk evaluation; LC-MS/MS

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Blanco, L.; Lago, J.; González, V.; Paz, B.; Rambla-Alegre, M.; Cabado, A.G. Occurrence of Tetrodotoxin in Bivalves and Gastropods from Harvesting Areas and Other Natural Spaces in Spain. Toxins 2019, 11, 331.

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