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Journal of the Brazilian Chemical Society

Print version ISSN 0103-5053

Abstract

BATISTA, Bruno L. et al. Reference concentrations for trace elements in urine for the Brazilian population based on q-ICP-MS with a simple dilute-and-shoot procedure. J. Braz. Chem. Soc. [online]. 2009, vol.20, n.8, pp. 1406-1413. ISSN 0103-5053.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0103-50532009000800004.

Biomonitoring of trace elements is of critical importance in human health assessment. However, trace element concentrations in biological fluids are affected by environmental and physiological parameters, and therefore considerable variations can occur between specific population subgroups. Brazil is a large country with large environmental diversity and with a limited knowledge of the reference values (baseline data) for trace elements in biological fluids. Atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS) and inductively coupled plasma emission spectrometry (ICP-OES) are still the dominant analytical techniques used for biomonitoring trace element analysis in clinical specimens. However, the use of ICP-MS is becoming more usual in clinical laboratory analysis. Then, we evaluated here a simple dilute-and-shoot method for sequential determination of Al, Ba, Be, Cd, Co, Cu, Cs, Mn, Ni, Pb, Pt, Sb, Se, Sn, Tl and U in urine by quadrupole inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (q-ICP-MS). Urine samples (500 µL) were accurately pipetted into conical tubes (15 mL) and diluted to 10 mL with a solution containing 0.5 % (v/v) HNO3 + 0.005% (v/v) Triton X-100. Diluted urine samples also contain rhodium, iridium and yttrium added as internal standards. After that, samples were directly analyzed by ICP-MS against matrix-matching calibration. Method detection limit (3s, n = 20) were in the ng L-1 range for all analytes. The method was applied to the analysis of 412 ordinary urine samples from Brazilian healthy and non-exposed subjects to establish reference values. Data validation was provided by the analysis of the standard reference material (SRM) 2670a toxic elements in urine (freeze-dried) (high and low levels) from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and reference urine samples from the trace elements intercomparison program operated by the Institut National de Sante' Publique du Quebec, Canada.

Keywords : ICP-MS; atomic spectrometry; clinical samples; trace elements; rapid treatment; reference ranges.

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