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Title: The predominance of inorganic arsenic species in plants from Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada

Elevated levels of arsenic in Yellowknife, NWT, Canada, from historic and recent gold mine operations, are of increasing concern to Yellowknife residents. The study of arsenic in Yellowknife plants is a part of ongoing bioavailability and food chain research. A variety of plants from Yellowknife were analyzed for total arsenic and water soluble arsenic species. The plants included vascular plants and bryophytes (mosses). Total amounts of arsenic were greatest in mosses and varied greatly within specimens of the same plant species from different locations. Mostly inorganic arsenic species were extracted from plants using methanol/water (1:1). This result is very important from a toxicological point of view, since inorganic species are relatively toxic arsenic species. Small amounts of methylated arsenic species, as well as arsenosugars, were present in some plants. On average, greater than 50% of arsenic in these plants was not extracted; the chemical and toxicological characteristics of this fraction remain a topic for further study.
Authors:
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Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
20014612
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Environmental Science and Technology; Journal Volume: 34; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: PBD: 1 Jan 2000
Research Org:
Royal Military Coll. of Canada, Kingston, Ontario (CA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; 56 BIOLOGY AND MEDICINE, APPLIED STUDIES; NORTHWEST TERRITORIES; ARSENIC; LAND POLLUTION; BIOLOGICAL AVAILABILITY; PLANTS; BIOLOGICAL INDICATORS; SOILS; ROOT ABSORPTION; BIOLOGICAL ACCUMULATION