Sampling selenium

Determination of trace metals and other micronutrients in the population is important for epidemiological studies of the health effects of diet and environmental pollutants. The presence of selenium, particularly in children is critical to numerous enzymes and other proteins. However, the element is toxic at elevated levels. Now, a team from the Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, in Kermanshah, Iran, have developed continuous sample drop flow microextraction coupled with iridium-modified tube graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry (GFAAS) as a sensitive method for analyzing selenium in blood plasma samples from children. The data they have obtained in their study offers a baseline for this particular population.