Sample preparation procedures for different tissues of rats, previously intoxicated with lead, will be studied. The total lead concentration in these tissues will be determined by GF AAS and the lead speciation will be carried out using the HPLC-ICP-MS technique. Wistar-Hannover rats will be employed as experimental animals that will receive successive lead acetate doses. After that, the presence of lead in the following tissues will be investigated: heart, liver, kidney and bones. For the different tissues appropriate sample treatments will be established for the two analysis type (total and lead speciation). Optimum instrument conditions will also be evaluated for both atomic absorption and mass spectrometers. The lead distribution among experimental animal tissues is not reported in the literature and this kind of information will be used to correlate the presence of lead with physiological effects that have being observed in rats. This study is a cooperative work between researches in analytical chemistry and medicine. The results of this project may contribute for the understanding of the lead intoxication mechanism and consequently to review the current procedures used for detoxification treatments, which is an important issue for public health.
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