Biological Trace Element Research

, Volume 143, Issue 2, pp 815–824 | Cite as

Assessment of Trace Elements in Scalp Hair of a Young Urban Population in Brazil

  • Maria Fernanda Hornos Carneiro
  • Maurício Bianchini Moresco
  • Gabriela Ramos Chagas
  • Vanessa Cristina de Oliveira Souza
  • Claudia Ramos Rhoden
  • Fernando BarbosaJrEmail author


The aim of this study was to establish background values for toxic and essential elements in hair, interelement correlations and the differences in levels between genders in a healthy young population from Southern Brazil. Hair samples (n = 167) were collected from healthy students aged 12–18 years. Trace element concentrations in hair were determined by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. The study provided relatively low values for toxic elements and balanced concentrations for the essential elements in the adolescents' hair with reliable reference data. Interestingly, this study also demonstrated statistical correlations considered newfound between the elements in hair. Hair mercury levels were influenced by gender; with males presenting higher values. The overall findings of the present study, with respect to the estimated chemical elements, are of prime importance in the evaluation of reference values for determining environmental effects on children living in urban areas.


Hair Trace elements Reference values Children ICP-MS 



The study was supported by grants from the Secretaria de Saúde do Estado do Rio Grande do Sul (Convênio 020/05), the Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico-CNPq (MCT/CNPq 06/2008)0 and the Fundação de Amparo a Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (FAPESP). We also thank Alan Silveira Fleck and Bruno Lemos Batista for the technical support.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maria Fernanda Hornos Carneiro
    • 1
  • Maurício Bianchini Moresco
    • 2
  • Gabriela Ramos Chagas
    • 2
  • Vanessa Cristina de Oliveira Souza
    • 1
  • Claudia Ramos Rhoden
    • 2
  • Fernando BarbosaJr
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Laboratório de Toxicologia e Essencialidade de Metais, Depto. de Análises Clínicas, Toxicológicas e Bromatológicas, Faculdade de Ciências Farmacêuticas de Ribeirão PretoUniversidade de São PauloRibeirão PretoBrazil
  2. 2.Laboratório de Estresse Oxidativo e Poluição AtmosféricaUniversidade Federal de Ciências da Saúde de Porto AlegrePorto alegreBrazil

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