Measurement of Total Mercury in Whole Blood

Mercury in blood, mostly organic mercury, usually relates directly to our diet. It can also be from a recent exposure to a high level of elemental mercury vapor. Long-term exposure to high levels of methylmercury causes effects primarily on the human nervous system.

MA-3 Solo is designed to be as simple to use as possible. Unlike other systems that require purified oxygen gas, purified air is used as the combustion and carrier gas. This design concept makes the instrument perfect for field portable operation or for use in mobile laboratories. The ceramic sample boats are easily cleaned for reuse. No gas requirement and reusable boats keep operating costs low.

MA-3 Solo
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Analytical Method

Several methods were established in the past to analyze Mercury in environmental samples. Most methods, like the ICP-MS and the conventional AAS, require a sample pretreatment process before the analysis. However, the sample pretreatment is not only time consuming, but also generates hazardous waste.

EPA 7473 is one of the established reference methods of Thermal Decomposition Mercury Analysis.

Technique & Principle

NIC MA-Series, MA-3 Solo employs Direct Thermal Decomposition - Gold Amalgamation - CVAAS technique to determine total mercury in various types of samples. The NIC MA-3 Solo works on the principle of Cold Vapor Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy, where monochromatic light at a wavelength of 253.7 nanometers is attenuated by mercury vapor in a measurement cell.

The Direct Thermal Decomposition technique proves to be an efficient and accurate method to analyze for mercury in whole blood. As compared to the conventional wet-chemistry cold vapor technique, thermal decomposition does not require any use of wet-reagents and wet-chemical preparation, each analysis is easily completed in 7 to 8 minutes.


Excellent precisions on both blood specimens and ClinChek Whole Blood Control, recoveries achieved within the certified range. Consistent good recoveries on regular Check STD of 0.5ng from 0.01ppm Standard solution confirm the analyzer performance.

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