Application of proton induced x ray emission pixe to the determination of trace elements in biological samples
Spieker, C.; Heck, D.; Zidek, W.; Stratmann, T.; Bassewitz, D.P.V.; Vetter, H.; Zumkley, H.
Trace Elements in Medicine 3(2): 87-89
Charged particle reactions are used in the Karlsruhe nuclear microprobe for the analysis of light elements in organic tissue. In this method (PIXE) a well-focussed ion beam is directed at the sample under investigation. The secondary radiation induced by the ion impact gives the information on the elemental composition of the target mass. In this study, samples from lumbar aorta, renal artery, rat heart muscle and human heart muscle were examined. The results demonstrate that PIXE yields a good insight into the spatial distribution of trace elements in tissue. The spatial resolution of this technique is limited to about 4 .mu.m. Further developments will be necessary to achieve a resolution sufficient for analysing subcellular components.