• Roland S. Young
Part of the Biochemistry of the Elements book series (BOTE, volume 3)


Studies on the biochemistry of cobalt can be said to have commenced around 1934, when the cause of serious disorders of cattle and sheep, in various parts of the world, was finally traced to a deficiency of this element in their diet. Farmers and ranchers had realized for a very long time that if cattle and sheep were grazed continuously on these areas, the animals would lose appetite and weight, become anaemic and weak, and finally die. Agricultural scientists endeavored for many years to find an explanation by seeking toxic elements in the soil and vegetation, parasitic infestation, or deficiencies of the major elements essential for animal nutrition. When investigations turned to minor elements such as iron, and conflicting results were obtained, it was eventually discovered that the small quantity of cobalt present in some iron compounds was actually the curative agent.


Cobalt Content Cobalt Chloride Hard Metal Endemic Goiter Cobalt Compound 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roland S. Young
    • 1
  1. 1.VictoriaCanada

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