Preliminary results on the quantification of gold by LA-ICPMS in mouse bones

Fanny Claverie1, Julien Malherbe1, Paul E. Stutzman2 & Stephen E. Long1



Murine bone samples exposed to gold nanoparticles have been analyzed at NIST in support of collaborative projects whose goals are to develop analytical protocols for gold in biological tissues and thereby provide useful standards for the growing number of medicinal applications of gold-containing compounds.

Laser Ablation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICPMS) has been widely used for the analysis of biological samples. Thanks to its unique features, LA-ICPMS allows the determination of trace element concentrations at a micro-scale and is now employed for the mapping (imaging) of biological and geological samples. However, this technique still suffers of the occurrence of elemental fractionation, together with the lack of reference materials, which limits the capability for quantitative analysis.

In order to assess the concentration of gold in bones, pure hydroxyapatite (HAP) powder, bone ash and bone meal were used to prepare 3 different series of matrix-matched standards. Their crystalline lattices were analyzed by XRD and their concentrations in gold determined by liquid LA-ICPMS after dissolution. The suitability of these home-made standards was evaluated by 193 nm LA-ICPMS for the analysis of gold in bones (homogeneity, calibration curves...).