Katie Moore, UK finalist

Katie is in the 3rd
year of her DPhil at the University of Oxford. Her research focuses on
the
localisation of important trace elements in cereal grains at high
resolution
using NanoSIMS and is in collaboration with Rothamsted Research. Prior
to this she obtained a MEng
degree in Materials Science at Oxford.

 

NanoSIMS
Analysis of Arsenic and Selenium in Cereal Grains

Trace elements are an important part
of our diet, both beneficially and detrimentally. Understanding where
they are
located in crops will help improve diets and avoid exposure to
potentially
poisonous contamination. Selenium deficiency is a major problem in the
UK with
the majority of the population  consuming about half their recommended
daily amount. Conversely the flooding of rice paddy fields in areas such
as
Bangladesh with arsenic contaminated water has resulted in rice
containing
significant amounts of this toxic and carcinogenic element.

The NanoSIMS is a
state-of-the-art microscope capable of high resolution chemical
imaging (down to 50nm) with the ability to detect low elemental
concentrations (ppm levels). This presentation will show how NanoSIMS
can be
used to investigate the location of two key trace elements, arsenic and
selenium, in rice and wheat grains, respectively, which is a serious
analytical
challenge for any other technique.

Watch the presentation on IOM3 TV

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