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Trends and results in elucidating the topochemistry of lithium in the organism

, : Trends and results in elucidating the topochemistry of lithium in the organism. Bratislavske Lekarske Listy 74(5): 494-511

The histotopochemistry of Li, a psychotropic drug, has remained an untreated problem in world literature until 1979. The possibilities of elucidating the histotopography of lithium salts introduced experimentally into animal tissue were studied. Li cannot be demonstrated in these tissues by purely chemical procedures. The cation of Li cannot be demonstrated either as a carbonate, fluoride or phosphate due to the intricate chemical kinetics and the histologic technical impracticability of the given reactions. The same is true for the demonstration of ammonium stearate and (complex) periodates. Although lithium salts fluoresce with 8-hydroxyquinoline, this occurrence is of little specificity. The reaction of lithium salts with methenamine and potassium ferricyanide can serve for informative histotopochemical purposes, yet the method has its drawbacks. Of the physical methods, the most promising appears to be the technically demanding approach suggested by French authors, based on neutron irradiation of tissue sections from the organs of experimental animals which had been pretreated with the enriched isotope 6Li. The alpha particles yielded by this nuclear reaction indicate the occurrence sites of Li by their traces in a suitable detector.

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