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URMC / EHSC / Cores and Facilities / Elemental Analysis Facility


Elemental Analysis Facility

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Our Mission

The purpose of the Elemental Analysis Facility is to support the EHSC research community by meeting the growing need for high-sensitivity quantitative analysis of trace elements within biological, chemical and environmental samples that are a focal point of a number of Center projects. The objective of the Facility is to maintain and operate state-of-the-art instrumentation, and make these analytical capabilities readily accessible to investigators to achieve their research goals. The Facility is equipped with a suite of ICP-MS, OES and AAS instrumentation for trace level elemental analyses. The Elemental Analysis Facility is directed by Dr. Matthew Rand, a transdisciplinary investigator with expertise in metal toxicology research using both Drosophila and human models.

Analytical services are strongest for transition elements, with emphasis on toxic metals. 

Services include:

  • Consultation on experimental design and data analysis with experienced staff  in elemental analysis of essential and toxic elements.
  • Sample preparation and digestion for various tissues and biological matrices.
  • Surveying of elemental composition of biological samples.
  • High sensitivity element concentration determinations in biological samples.


  • Various protocols for biological and non-biological sample preparation for downstream elemental analyses (e.g. acid, base and microwave digestion). 
  • Element quantification spanning the ppm-ppt limits of detection (LOD).
  • Single element and simultaneous multi-element analyses (e.g. up to 10 elements routinely).
  • Multiple methodologies for Hg analyses with ppt limits of detection (LOD).
  • Chromatographic separation of complex mixtures and organo-metal speciation (e.g. GC and LC separations systems)