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Trace elements in bone may be determined by Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis (INAA).  INAA may be defined as a chemical element analysis made by nuclear activation followed by the measurement of specific induced radioactivities without the use of radiochemical separations.  This type of analysis is performed on a SLOWPOKE (Safe LOW POwer Kritical Experiment) Reactor with a gamma-ray counting detector.  The SLOWPOKE Facility can analyze samples for a number of elements simultaneously, with a sensitivity at the ppm level. The analytical techniques used require minimal sample preparation and are non-destructive permitting retention of valuable samples or re-use of the same sample for further measurements.

For our studies, we are primarily interested in the following bone elements:

  • strontium (Sr)

  • magnesium (Mg)

  • sodium (Na)

  • phosphorus (P)

  • calcium (Ca)

  • fluoride (F)

back to "Chemical Analysis Techniques"