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  • On the potential of combining neutron activation analysis and particle induced X-ray emission (PIXE) for micro- and micro-distribution analysis of hard metals in human tissues

Abstract

Tungsten carbide and cobalt are the main components of hard metal alloy while other metals such as chromium, niobium, tantalum, titanium and vanadium are sometimes added in smaller amounts. Exposure to hard metal dusts can induce a lung fibrosis with cobalt playing a major role. In order to provide information on the role that each metal may have in causing this disease, determination of the total content and the distribution of inhaled metals in lung tissue of hard metal workers is of paramount importance. However, samples such as transbronchial biopsy and bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL), often used in the medical diagnosis of pneumoconiosis, allow for a small amount of material. This calls for sensitive and accurate analytical procedures for microdetermination and distribution of metals in pulmonary tissue and cellular material, such as macrophages. This work proposes a combination of sophisticated analytical techniques such as neutron activation analysis (NAA), currently applied to the determination of the total concentration of more than 30 elements in biological specimens, and PIXE analysis, particularly microPIXE, which has a great potential for microdistribution analysis in small biological samples. Principles and perspectives of the combined use of these techniques for the analysis of human tissue are outlined and discussed.

Additional information

Authors: PIETRA R, JRC Ispra (IT);SABBIONI E, JRC Ispra (IT);WÄTJEN U, JRC Geel (BE);GALLORINI M, CRAA, CNR, Pavia (IT);TARTAGLIA G P,
Bibliographic Reference: Paper presented: Cobalt and Hard Metal Diseases, Bergamo (IT), March 12-13, 1992
Availability: Text not available
Record Number: 199211379 / Last updated on: 1994-11-29
Category: PUBLICATION
Original language: en
Available languages: en