The occurrence of tributyltin (TBT) is reported in the coastal waters of a few selected sites in Peninsular Malaysia. Water, bivalves and sediment samples collected were analysed specifically for TBT using sensitive analytical methods which involved a solvent extraction procedure with appropriate clean-up followed by graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometric measurements. The levels of TBT in the seawater in unexposed areas were found in the range from <3.4 to 20 ng litre(-1) as compared to coastal areas with high boat and ship activities where TBT levels in seawater were generally above 30 ng litre(-1), with the highest level found at 281.8 ng litre(-1). TBT levels in the tissues of random cockle and soft-shell clam samples from local markets were found in the range from <0.5 to 3.7 ng g(-1) wet weight. The levels of TBT found in green mussel samples both from the market (23.5 ng g(-1) wet weight) and those from a mussel farm (14.2 ng g(-1) wet weight) indicate slight accumulation of TBT. In sediments, TBT levels were found ranging from <0.7 ng g(-1) dry weight in unexposed coastal sites to as high as 216.5 ng g(-1) dry weight for a site within a port area.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.