Cyanide fishing and cyanide detection in coral reef fish using chemical tests and biosensors.

Department of Chemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong, China.
Biosensors & Bioelectronics (Impact Factor: 6.45). 07/2005; 20(12):2581-93. DOI: 10.1016/j.bios.2004.09.015
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Sodium cyanide has been used in the Philippines to collect tropical marine fish for aquarium and food trades since the early 1960s. Cyanide fishing is a fast method to stun and collect fish. This practice is damaging the coral reefs irreversibly. In most countries cyanide fishing is illegal, but most of the exporting and importing countries do not have test and certificate systems. Many analytical methods are available for the detection of cyanide in environmental and biological samples. However, most of the techniques are time consuming, and some lack specificity or sensitivity. Besides, an ultra sensitive cyanide detection method is needed due to the rapid detoxification mechanisms in fish. The aim of this review is to give an overview of cyanide fishing problem in the south-east Asia and current strategies to combat this destructive practice, summarise some of the methods for cyanide detection in biological samples and their disadvantages. A novel approach to detect cyanide in marine fish tissues is briefly discussed.

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